Quiz: How Long Will I Live?
A simple way to estimate your lifespan
The following quiz, based on behaviors of the long-lived Seventh Day Adventists, is adapted from one created by Thomas Perls, a geriatrics specialist at Boston University. It’s good, not perfect.
“People will write to me and say, ‘I love the calculator, but it says I should be dead,’” Perls says. “I say, ‘This probably means you had some pretty bad behaviors in the past, but the good news is you have fantastic genes that protected you from them.’”
For the following test, start at 86 if you’re male and 89 if you’re female. (Sorry, fellas: Women typically live longer than men.)
Do you have a Zen-like attitude that makes it easy to shake stress? If yes, add five years. If no, subtract five.
Do you have family members who’ve lived to 95 or older? If yes, add 10 years. If no, don’t add or subtract anything.
Do you exercise five days a week for at least 30 minutes? If yes, add five years. If no, subtract five.
Are you regularly presenting your brain with interesting or challenging tasks, such as word or math puzzles or active learning? If yes, add five years. If no, don’t add or subtract anything.
Does your diet help you maintain a healthy weight so you don’t feel slowed down or unwell? If yes, don’t add anything. If no, subtract five years.
Do you smoke? If yes, take off 15 years. If no, don’t add or subtract anything.
What’s your final tally? Share it with us on Twitter or Facebook.
Average global life expectancy at birth:
This article was originally published in the March/April 2016 issue of Popular Science, as part of our “How To Live Forever” feature.