One way to get your name in your local newspaper is to reach age 100. It is an age that should be acknowledged.

Recently, two Fontana lady centenarians were featured in the Herald News. One was 100, the other 105. They were both members of the Fontana Community Senior Center, where they were having lunch when their photo was taken. For their age they looked very good.

This past week, another senior in the Inland Empire celebrated her 107th birthday with appropriate cake and candles. Her story appeared in the Sun newspaper. She looked great for her age. She lives in a senior care facility. I must mention that the majority of 100-year-olds are women.

It appears that longevity today is inching upward in spite of various handicaps people face on their journey.

What are the lifestyles that persons must follow to achieve a healthy life, a long life, and then reach the now attainable 100 years?

Many studies have been made by medical and nutritional groups to determine and then recommend wise living styles which may lead to the century mark.

Millions who follow the suggestions appear to lead healthier lives than they would have otherwise. The whole country is alerted. Examples are constantly on television. Reaching 100 is not their basic intention; it?s just living a healthy, happy life in a most adequate and satisfying manner that is OK. But often, 100 arrives regardless.

Reaching 100 means bypassing the main causes of earlier deaths.

Identifying and then avoiding high risk foods, and watching your step, are keys to a longer life.

In a study of Seventh Day Adventists of nearby Loma Linda, it noted that their group outlived their fellow humans by about eight years. They accomplished this by following a prescribed list of rules: Get regular exercise of at least 30 minutes a day. Walking was recommended. Drinking six to eight glasses of liquid every day is important to the body. Their diet is very important as they shun beef and other meats and consume a more vegetarian style diet. Snacking on nuts and avoiding egg yolks are two more recommendations. Also, no smoking or consuming alcoholic beverages.

Several years ago, I joined an adult class which was offered to help those with heart problems or diabetes. I followed faithfully the dietary and exercise requirements for the one month prescribed. At the end of the course, the doctor in charge, Dr. Hans Diehl, sent me a report stating that I had met the requirements properly, and that I no longer had diabetes. What a satisfying result!

Studies have been made in different parts of the world where it is known that 100-year-old persons have lived there for a long time and to try to determine why. They led a simple life, worked in the fields, ate sparingly, led a simple social life, and were philosophical about their future.

The Mediterranean diet has been highly recommended to people who want an excellent and proven method of eating and living. This diet has been practiced for many years, and is now being spread to other parts of the world, especially the U.S. Appealing to the consumers of this diet is the fact that they may drink a portion of red wine with food. Past studies have concluded that the consumption of red wine is actually beneficial to the heart. After all, these are grape growing lands, and drinking its product is a natural act.

Good eating habits contribute to a longer life. According to the U.S. Census of 2010, there are more than 371,000 persons aged 95 or more in our country, while those in the 85-94 age bracket number five million. I have 5 1/2 years to reach the hundred mark. Fingers crossed. I have never smoked.

A healthful diet includes liquids, cholesterol in moderate amounts, fruits and vegetables, some fish, some meat, small sugar amounts (desserts) and small amounts of salt. Even that favorite dessert ? ice cream ? has fewer calories, less sugar and fat. A dietary life with good characteristics contributes to a longer and more enjoyable life.

A list of characteristics found in the lives of centenarians includes low cholesterol, low blood pressure, no smoking, low alcohol, regular exercise, a good weight, having a purpose in life, a relaxed personality, a wise diet, and other good characteristics.

The child of today is scheduled to live 78.2 years.

The Fontana Community Senior Center may not have age 100 as one of its declared services, but considering its excellent nutrition program, exercise classes with walking as the popular activity, and social activities, including dancing, it is apparent that senior members attending activities at the Senior Center are most fortunate in having their health, their diet, medical checkups, their social life, in the hands of the staff of the Center, because everything they do for their clientele is done for the well-being of its members.

This is a practical philosophy which should contribute to the well-being of their future centenarians. They already have several. (FONTANAHERALD) 

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