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Health Secrets of Celebrity Centenarians

Jan 31, 2016, 6:37 p.m.
(l-r) George Burns, Queen Mother Elizabeth, Bob Hope

George Burns 1896-1996

He stretched, he walked and had a diet high in prunes, but “if you ask what is the single most important key to longevity I would have to say it is avoiding worry, stress and tension. And if you didn’t ask me, I’d still have to say it,” he wrote in his autobiography.

Gloria Stuart 1910-2010

She kept pretty busy as an actress during the 1930s and 40s, but she never really broke through as a star until 1997 when at age 87, she gave an Oscar-winning performance as “Old Rose” in Titanic. The secret to her long life may be found in the title of her memoir: I Just Kept Hoping. Research published in Psychological Science found that people who report having a strong purpose in life tend to outlive their peers.

Grandma Moses 1860-1961

The renowned painter didn’t begin to paint professionally until she was 78. “The important thing is keeping busy.” She also believed in the importance of keeping company with younger people and to always “keep laughing.”

Abbie” Hoffman 1906-2008

The Swiss chemist who discovered the psychedelic drug LSD, and used it himself, lived to the ripe old age of 102. He said his secret to long life was eating two raw eggs with his muesli for breakfast every morning.

Luise Rainer, 1910-2014

The legendary actress is mostly remembered winning back-to-back Oscars (The Great Ziegfeld and The Good Earth). In an interview just two months before her 100th birthday, the actress said it all came down to being curious.

Bob Hope 1903-2003

“The secret of eternal youth is to lie about your age,” he’d joke. But he said his

secret was in staying busy and “I walk two miles every night, no matter what city I’m in.”

Run Run Shaw 1907-2014

Run Run Shaw was the legendary film producer of kung-fu cinema and cult classics like Blade Runner. One of Shaw’s secrets to a long life was his daily habit of rotating his feet 64 times before he went to bed.

Jeanne Calment 1875-1997

She stayed active well into old age, took up fencing at age 86 and rode her bicycle every day until she was 100. Her biographer said Calment “was someone who, constitutionally and biologically speaking, was immune to stress.”

The Queen Mother 1900-2002

In her biography, Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, she said live your life, as if tomorrow you’ll be run over by a big red bus.

This list is from an article in Men’s Health by Brian VanHooker. Take the magazine’s four-step longevity predictor to assess whether you will live to be 100: www.menshealth.com/health/will-you-live-100

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