Life Expectancy

Reporter: Sophie Hull

Imagine knowing how long you'll live. What would it be... 60s 70s 80s 90s? Even 100? Dr John Lang from Good Health Solutions has devised a life expectancy test to tell you how long is left on the clock, and how you can live longer and better. We recruited 3 volunteers - in their 30s 40s and 50s. Simon Wheeler - 37. Beverly Nerden - 49 and Ivan Glover, 56. How do their lifestyles affect how many more years are ahead?

First up - Simon. A self employed business man. Simon describes his lifestyle: “I've got a dog. I take him out everyday. I play football - I train for football as well and I love getting out there in the fresh air. I don't have regular meal breaks. Kids definitely when they're younger and most probably when they're older will cost you a few years off your life.”

Dr John Lang comments: “Where it has impacted on him is the sleep side of things as you can imagine a self employed business man with a newborn baby on the block that probably cuts down his quality sleep time a bit - he has confessed to being a bit tired. Lack of sleep suppresses immune function and there's a lot of ramifications for future health”

What about Beverly? A life coach and mum of two. She describes her lifestyle: “Being diabetic I was overweight cause I felt I had to eat carbohydrates so over the last 5 yrs I've reduced my weight so I'm really careful about what I eat. I don't drink, I eat healthily, I exercise. There was a risk factor that my father had heart disease”

Dr John Lang comments: “We do often see this with people that have had a health scare earlier in life that they address a lot of the issues often in their 20's and 30's that other people don't address til they're 60 or 70.”

Last but not least - Ivan. Fruit grower and grandfather of 12. He says: “my worst habit is probably sitting down of a nighttime with a can of coke and a block of chocolate and not stopping until it's all gone. I don't do any formalised exercise because the work that I do is equivalent to doing that work. Stress hits everybody but you just look at the orange trees look at the nice green grass and the open air here and it just goes away fades away immediately.”

Despite the obvious risk factors, Ivan's happiness adds years to his life. Dr John Lang comments: “he's not showing signs of anxiety depression and i guess his self perceived quality of life all of that keeps him in good stead”

So ... what's their life expectancy? Simon - 84. Beverly - the ripe old age of 88. And Ivan - 83. All above the national average - which for men is 78 and women 83. But that might not be quite the achievement it seems.

Dr John Lang: “Most people in this country are overweight and unfit and have a cholesterol problem. So to be average in that context is nothing to write home about.” Staying fit and healthy in old age – is the main priority for Beverly. Though the guys have another plan in mind Says Ivan: “I think it'd be great to be a hundred”. Simon agrees: “100 would be good, get the century in!”

CONTACTS

Dr John Lang, Good Health Solutions

Tel: (02) 9356 0800

Website: www.goodhealthsolutions.com

Ivan Glover. Penrith Valley Oranges

Tel: (02) 4776 2332

Website: www.penrithvalleyoranges.com.au

Simon Wheeler, Hens Party

Tel: (02) 9904 9340

Website: www.hensparty.com.au

Beverly Nerden, Life Coach

Tel: (02) 9880 8373

Website: www.lifeis4living.com.au