Jayney's Blog

How practicing kindness towards others can help to reduce your biological age

As I have discussed previously, there is strong evidence to support the concept of practicing love, kindness and compassion towards yourself and others (including animals!) is intrinsically linked to staying healthy and as a direct result, increasing your longevity!

As such, kindness is a daily mantra I practice and with World Kindness Day taking place this week on Saturday 13th November, I wanted to let you know about a story from some time back. Whilst ‘old news’, this warms my heart every single time I think about it! I hope it makes you smile as much as it does me!

One Green Planet originally ran this story in which they described how one man’s kind and caring disposition more than likely contributed towards his longevity…

During the 1930s, Alfred ‘Alfie’ Date dedicated his time to learning how to knit so he could go on to create a jumper for his young nephew. Over the following 80 years, Alfie continued to knit enthusiastically and extensively not just for friends and family or even other human beings but for the wildlife of his home country! Alfie stopped his hands from ‘becoming idle’ by creating the sweetest little knitted tops for Penguins!

Alfie first became aware of the penguins need for human help when he moved into an elderly-care village in March 2014. He heard through the grapevine that the Phillip Island’s Penguin Foundation was in urgent need of knitters as there had been a huge oil spill that was directly impacting the health of the penguins. The knitters were being asked to create knitwear for these vulnerable creatures to stop them from eating the oil off their feathers before it can be washed off. This method, used by conservationists, also helps to keep penguins warm and dry promoting feather regrowth.

With the efforts of Alfie and many others, 96% of the 438 penguins affected by this disaster were saved and fully recovered. They were released back into the wild until such a time there was sadly yet another, devastating spill! Once again Alfie and the countless other volunteers from around the globe assisted in a secondary effort to save this group!

It is common knowledge that helping others, whoever it may be gives us a feel-good factor which in turn helps to relieve stress and when we are less stressed we start to see the positive impacts upon our overall health and of course a reduction in our biological age! As such, I would feel confident in suggesting that Alfie’s kind and giving nature, where he focused selflessly on the welfare of others (no matter how small) really did assist in contributing to his living to be Australia’s second oldest Super-Centurian! Sadly Alfie died in May 2016 but lived to a glorious age of 109!

So to bring some additional happy, healthy years to your life, look no further than practicing some random acts of kindness either towards yourself, your nearest and dearest, strangers or even animals!

Here are some suggestions to get you started:

1) Send a pick my up message to someone you haven’t spoken to for a while 

2) Take in your neighbour’s bin if you know they’ll be in late 

3) Bake a cake and deliver it to people you may not have spoken to before in your street 

4) Phone a family member you haven’t spoken to for some time 

5) Buy a hot drink for the homeless person you saw outside the shop 

6) Offer to run an errand for a friend 

7) Smile at everyone you see today! 

All my love,

Jayney x

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