Why pretending you’re younger is the healthiest lie

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Forget about the bad ‘mutton-dressed-as-lamb’ association, because a study has found that feeling younger than your age has its benefits!

Do you keep your age a secret?

Now you don’t have to feel guilty about pretending that you’re a few years younger than you are, because, as it turns out, feeling younger than your actual age could be good for you.

Research has found that older people who felt three or more years younger than their actual age had a lower death rate compared with those who felt their age or who felt more than one year older.

Feel young to live long

The researchers from the University College London examined data from a study on ageing involving 6 489 individuals whose average age was 65,8 years but whose average self-perceived age was 56,8 years.

Most of the adults (69,6 percent) felt three or more years younger than their actual age, while 25,6 percent had a self-perceived age close to their real age and 4,8 percent felt more than a year older than their chronological age.

Mortality rates during an average follow-up of 99 months were 14,3 percent in adults who felt younger, 18,5 percent in those who felt about their actual age and 24,6 percent in those adults who felt older, according to the study results. The relationship between self-perceived age and cardiovascular death was strong but there was no association between self-perceived age and cancer death.

In other words, even though your younger self-perceived age is not factual, feeling it is spot on for your health!

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