Owning an iPhone, watching reality television and beating younger relatives at games are just some of the secrets to keeping young, research has shown. Keeping up with technology by surfing the web, spending time with the grandchildren and catching the eye of someone younger were also amongst the list of things that made the more mature of us feel young again.
The study of 1,000 over 50′s unveiled the secrets of youth the older generation rely on- with having regular sex, fancying a younger celebrity and being on Facebook all likely to shave off a few years.
While anyone feeling a bit stale could benefit from knowing what Twitter is, sporting a leather jacket and trying yoga.
The research, which was commissioned by leading health and wellbeing mutual organisation Benenden Healthcare, found one in five places faith in a particular food, with broccoli, oats and blueberries offering the health boosts most swear by.
And apparently age is just a number, with the average person claiming their youth secrets lead them to feeling 18 years younger than they actually are.
Paul Keenan, External Affairs Manager for Benenden Healthcare said:
“The top 40 reasons we were given for staying young are certainly varied and provide a broad approach to living a full and vibrant life.
“While a lot of staying young is down to individual attitude, it seems there are many common experiences people turn to reconnect with their youth or feel invigorated day to day.
“Time spent with our younger friends and family members of course gives us a new perspective, while keeping up with technology and social trends clearly has a bearing on how in-touch a person considers themselves.
“And it’s certainly true that things like trying new food, reading challenging books and even playing practical jokes are big contributors to feeling youthful.”
Many of the “older” generation thought staying up past midnight led the rebellious charge towards youthfulness, while eating spicy food and keeping in touch with the local gossip are guaranteed to keep a person fresh.
Using smartphone apps, eating chocolate and having a younger partner all appeared to keep many an over fifty in good nick.
Living a little dangerously is always sure to keep a person young – flirting with a stranger, reading an erotic novel and driving a little fast were all also named in the top 40 secrets.
Nine in ten people thought that how old you feel as a person mostly depends on your outlook and attitude to life – 70% also feel it’s crucial to laugh regularly.
The average respondent was aged 59 – but the age people actually felt was 18 years younger at 41.
Sometimes feeling young means not always playing by the rules- four in ten describe themselves as rebellious, with more than a quarter saying they’ve received ‘a telling off’ while in their fifties.
In fact, it seems 40% of over fifties have trespassed somewhere and a quarter admit they’ve broken the law since hitting half a century.
Playing practical jokes is also deemed important in the battle against old age – while 30% described themselves as risk takers overall.
Three quarters don’t let their age stop them from making an effort to stay up to date by embracing new technology.
Paul Keenan, representative of Benenden Healthcare, continued:
“Of course, it’s not so much about feeling young as it is about feeling content in life and making time to do the things that make you happy.
“It can be a serious world and sometimes we can get wrapped up in it too much so it’s important not to lose sight of what keeps you feeling good about yourself.
“Whether that’s dancing, keeping tabs with what’s deemed ‘trendy’ or simply enjoying games with younger relatives, taking time to remember what you enjoy about life is crucial to approaching it in the right way.”
TOP 40 SECRETS TO FEELING YOUTHFUL
1. Trying new food
2. Surfing the web
3. Reading books that challenge me
4. Having sex
5. Dancing around to music
6. Having a Facebook account
7. Going out/ socialising with grown up kids/ grandchildren
8. Knowing what Twitter is
9. Eating chocolate
10. Staying up past midnight
11. Eating spicy food
12. Beating younger relatives at games
13. Keeping up to date with the gossip of people I know
14. Getting tipsy
15. Go swimming
16. Catching the eye of someone younger
17. Using phone apps
18. Having a younger partner
19. Watching the latest cinema releases
20. Watching the latest television
21. Eating sweets
22. Watching stand-up comedy
23. Going cycling
24. Having an iPhone
25. Dancing on a dance floor
26. Flirting with a stranger
27. Reading an erotic novel
28. Watching reality television
29. Playing practical jokes
30. Fancying a younger celebrity
31. Reading magazines that are aimed at younger readers
32. Driving a car fast
33. Staying in touch with what celebrities are doing
34. Yoga class
35. Zumba class
36. Wearing a leather jacket
37. Salsa dancing
38. Going to a nightclub
39. Wearing a short skirt
40. Drink lots of water