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Old 09-17-2011, 09:48 PM
 
Location: Near a river
16,045 posts, read 16,838,570 times
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Boy we can't seem to get away from death can we.

Well, my two cents: one of the biggest factors in death in the 50s is having a belly (tire around the middle). If we don't exercise in our 40s, if we sit at a desk all day plus overtime and then go home and crash on the couch after eating, that is a recipe for a heart attack in and of itself. Add smoking, prescription drugs, a poor diet, and stress....you can see how easy it is to kick off at that age.
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Old 09-17-2011, 10:07 PM
 
Location: delaware
677 posts, read 755,477 times
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my husband died at 58, after having taught school for 30 years and only being retired for two years. he was an extremely conscientious teacher who took his responsibilities to the students vey seriously. he was a worrier and, in my view, over functioned in most aspects of his life. the last ten years of his career were very stressful and he felt, as do many teachers, that he was caught between an administration that wanted the school to look good at any cost, and unreasonable parents who wanted A's for their children regardless of knowledge or achievement. he had a rare cancer that killed him in nine months, and i feel, but do not know, that the stresses of the job and those he placed on himself, because of the job, contributed to an early death. i do know of other teachers who have taught under severe long term stress ( very common in this profession ) who have died not long after retirement.

his siblings over 60, all much more easy going, are still living. i personally do not have any close friends or former co-workers who died in their fifties.

the moral of this story- as my husband advised others, never under any circumstances become a teacher. we are who we are and it is difficult to change our basic temperaments. as for me, i will always wish we had had more years together, but i've always been grateful that i was not a perfectionist and knew when it was prudent to take shortcuts.
catsy girl
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Old 09-17-2011, 10:39 PM
 
Location: Georgia, USA
18,483 posts, read 22,786,193 times
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There are people called actuaries who crunch the numbers on life expectancy and give us Life Tables:

http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvsr/nvsr58/nvsr58_21.pdf

These numbers help determine things like the premiums for life insurance and the rules the government makes for withdrawals from our IRAs.

If you go to the link, look in the contents on the left side of the page, click on list of detailed tables, and choose the table for your gender and race. You can then see the average risk of death each year.

The risk of dying increases a little each year (obviously ) but there is no big leap in risk for people in their 50s. So, for the country as a whole, the 50s are not more dangerous than we would expect for the passage of time.

But these are averages and apply to a large group of people. It includes all deaths, even accidents and homicides.

Whether you beat the averages --- or not --- as an individual depends in some part on your genetics and in some part on the things you do to maximize whatever genetic potential you have. If your family genetics favor your becoming diabetic and you do not exercise, watch your diet, and maintain a healthy weight, your odds of beating the average go way down. If you choose to smoke, they go way down.

If your family history includes people who live into their 80s and 90s, the odds of beating the averages goes up --- especially if you choose a healthy lifestyle.
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Old 09-17-2011, 11:43 PM
 
12,673 posts, read 19,501,051 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Curmudgeon View Post
Elanor Mondale and Kara Kennedy both just died at age 51. While I was in my 50s, eight coworkers died, most of heart attacks, and all were in their early to late 50s. I decided that the best guarantee of a long life was to survive your 50s so my 60th birthday was cause for celebration and relief. So far, so good!

Anyone else ever notice this trend which most of us, thus far, have been able to avoid or live beyond. I have my theory as to why the 50s are so "dangerous," other than it being a corporate plot to avoid pension payments. What are yours, if any?
This depends on how you take care of your health. Diet, exercising and maintenence.
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Old 09-18-2011, 12:07 AM
 
Location: University City, Philadelphia
22,549 posts, read 10,722,230 times
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Until recently, according to my "sleep doctor," a lot of people - especially men - died of sudden heart attack or strokes in their 50's and early 60's due to undiagnosed Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) ... a disease much more common than previously thought. When the breathing pattern is interrupted during the sleep cycle the brain and the heart does not receive the oxygen it needs, which causes people to die suddenly of strokes and heart attacks. This is relatively new disease discover and we only became aware of it in the past 15 or 20 years.
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Old 09-18-2011, 12:42 AM
 
5,091 posts, read 12,553,377 times
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It all depends on avoidance of accidents, minimizing or eliminating environmental and job hazzards, self care and genetics.

You can avoid situations that are more accident prone. You could drive less or not at all. You can choose to not drive on highspeed roadways and you can avoid not driving on Saturday and Sunday night. You can avoid recreational activities that have more hazzards. Employment is hazzardous occupation may shorten your life.

Environmental hazards are everywhere and some you can never aware that they exist. Some workplaces, by their very nature, expose you to industrial hazards--so avoid them. However, some may be very subtle and you will never know they have effected you until you suffer from a cancer that can be related to that exposure. It could be your office computer or air conditioning; it could be paper, ink or pencil shavings; it could be your hand soap, your rejuvenating cream, your carpet or it could be something that people eat everyday without a thought--it could be pepper.

When I was a child, in grade school, we cleaned the blackboard eraser by pounding them together. I bet many of us can never forget the smell of chalk and the dust from the blackboard erasers. Was that a hazard that has or will cause us problems?? I think of asthma and lung cancer but perhaps the headlines will read:

Dementia has been linked to Childhood Exposure to Chalk.

I often wonder if the people who often buy new cars and new houses put themselves at risk. The new smell that you may find enjoyable is outgasing of chemicals from plastics, paints, varnishes and finishes of all types of products and fabrics. If you can smell it--it is there. And if it is there, it can be a hazard. It may not effect you today but many years hence, it may kill you.

The advocates of healthy living advocate good nutrition and exercise and observations have proved that correct. Yet, again I wonder about people who buy organic expensive products and do recommended exercises but go home to well furnished new homes surrounded by pristine yards that are maintained by pesiticides, herbicides, fungicides and chemical fertilizers. They then sit in their homes with an automatic misted scents and deodorizers. Does that negate their efforts of healthy living?

Genes play and big part in how long we live. Can we control that factor. We cannot control our ancestry, after the fact. However, we can partially control our future progeny genes by defining mating only to those who do not have recognized defective genes. It is controversial to some today but in the future, with the advancements of science, it may become the norm of a Brave New World.

Livecontent

Last edited by livecontent; 09-18-2011 at 12:54 AM..
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Old 09-18-2011, 08:22 AM
 
Location: Near a river
16,045 posts, read 16,838,570 times
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LC, you are so right about environmental hazards. The Post-WWII kids (us) were exposed to all kinds of chemicals and toxins that previous generations weren't. When I was a kid living in the "old neighborhoods," it was a common household practice for "dad" to take out the DDT spray (absolutely deadly carcinogen) and spray the you know what out of the basement and attic, around the house foundation, to keep away bats, mice, rats, etc. How common was it to spray for ants and roaches within the house? If the stuff could kill an indestructible roach, what was it doing to our developing young lungs? And the pesticide crap on the lawns, the spray paints and deoderants, on and on all through our childhood and for many of us our adulthood too. Add to that the toxins and chemicals raining down on us from factories, etc (what about the street spraying every other week in the summer for mosquitoes )...I mean seriously, I'm surprised I'm still alive.

Workplace toxicity from asbestos, plastics, solvents, etc wreak havoc with our immune systems. My DIL's father was a firefighter, his office was in a building that stored the chemicals for fighting fires. He has stage IV liver cancer in retirement.

Working the wrong job can cause the bad kind of stress. Stress added to toxic overload is deadly.
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Old 09-18-2011, 01:21 PM
 
Location: Finally escaped The People's Republic of California
11,103 posts, read 6,982,528 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Curmudgeon View Post
While I was in my 50s, eight coworkers died, most of heart attacks, and all were in their early to late 50s
Anyone else ever notice this trend which most of us, thus far, have been able to avoid or live beyond. ?
Umm gee thanks Buddy, I just turned 51............
OK guess I better go jogging or something....
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Old 09-18-2011, 01:27 PM
 
Location: SW Missouri
14,864 posts, read 27,391,542 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Curmudgeon View Post
Elanor Mondale and Kara Kennedy both just died at age 51. While I was in my 50s, eight coworkers died, most of heart attacks, and all were in their early to late 50s. I decided that the best guarantee of a long life was to survive your 50s so my 60th birthday was cause for celebration and relief. So far, so good!

Anyone else ever notice this trend which most of us, thus far, have been able to avoid or live beyond. I have my theory as to why the 50s are so "dangerous," other than it being a corporate plot to avoid pension payments. What are yours, if any?
A fitting legacy to fast food, chemical additives, processed food, etc. The mortality rate is going to start getting younger and younger. This is just the beginning.

20yrsinBranson
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Old 09-18-2011, 06:17 PM
 
Location: Lakewood OH
19,282 posts, read 20,159,036 times
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My best friend died of Cancer at age 56. She always ate healthy, rode her bike, hiked and neither smoked nor drank. She was the poster child for healthy living. But Cancer ran in her family. Her mother and brother died of this disease. She had hoped that by living healthy she would be able to avoid getting sick but it was not meant to be.

Sometimes things happen and although we may try, we just cannot change them.
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