The key to a long life: Avoid men?

So said Jessie Gallan, a woman living in Scotland who died at 109 years of age in March 2015.

She said the secret to her longevity was eating porridge, getting exercise, and not getting married. She said men are more trouble than they're worth.

I don't think it was fair for Gallan to make such a blanket statement. Sure, some men are a pain in the neck (as are some women), but not all of them are that way. I'm not sure if she may have experienced something in her life -- say, with an ex lover -- that left a bitter taste in her mouth about men.

A national survey of centenarians in 2014 found that the secrets to a long time include ample time with friends and family and a commitment to fitness. This sounds feasible, but cutting off contact with the opposite sex? I seriously doubt that can prolong your life, let alone for over 100 years!

In addition, I don't know what jobs she held throughout her life, but I'm willing to bet they weren't overly stressful. If there's something that shortens one's life, it's most certainly stress. What's more, poor sleeping and eating habits, I'm sure, do nothing to help one's cause.

I would argue that, as the survey I noted above suggests, social relationships with people of both genders mostly enhance a person's life. At the end of the day, we all ache to be loved and accepted.

It doesn't mean we should depend on others to be happy. But having a close circle of friends and family means we have someone to chat and have a drink with, whether times are good or bad. That alone is worth its weight in gold.

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