It's not a stretch to say that by leading an active lifestyle you're likely to live longer. According to several studies highlighted by the folks at Psychology Today, those who mentally and physically exercise regularly are more likely to outlive those who just exercise.
Photo by Mukumbura.
No one should be surprised that regular physical exercise increases your life expectancy (though you may be a bit surprised, as the article points out, that the increase is akin to quitting smoking). But people who also engage in cognitively demanding activities (reading, writing, crossword puzzles and other activities) are least likely to develop memory loss — they're also more likely to outlive people who led active lifestyles but didn't engage in mental stimulation (though to some extent exercising your body can exercise your brain).
The takeaway: If you're looking for more reasons to get out there and exercise — your body or your mind — this seems like as good as any.
Mind games: Keeping your brain sharp through play [Psychology Today]