Mark Twain said, “Age is a question of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.”

That’s pretty much the same conclusion researchers Andrew Steptoe and Isla Rippon came to after conducting a long-term study of close to 6,500 men and women. The researchers’ goal was to determine whether perceived-age had any effect on health, physical limitations or wellbeing later in life.

The study participants were all asked, “How old do you feel you are?”  Two-thirds said they felt younger than they actually were.  It turned out these respondents had a lower death rate over the course of eight years than the participants who said they felt their full age or a little older.

Tango Couple

The study didn’t prove that a youthful mindset actually prolongs life, but it does suggests that an optimistic attitude can have an affect on mortality rates.

You can access the study published in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine here: Feeling Old vs Being Old

But a free recap of the study is available here: Study Recap

And if you just want to have some fun and take a quiz to see you old you feel, go here: How Old Are You?

On the other hand, if you’re feeling old and need a pick-me-up, check out the fabulous Happy Birthday to Norman Lear video below. The man who gave us All in the Family, The Jeffersons and many other great shows just turned 93.  Happy Birthday, Mr. Lear!