According to the study by UC San Francisco, the participants who exercised, slept well and ate well had less telomere shortening than the ones who didn't maintain healthy lifestyles, even when they had similar levels of stress.
Eli Puterman said that it's very important that we promote healthy living, especially under circumstances of typical experiences of life stressors like death, caregiving and job loss.
The researchers found that women who engaged in lower levels of healthy behaviors, there was a significantly greater decline in telomere length in their immune cells for every major life stressor that occurred during the year.
Yet women who maintained active lifestyles, healthy diets, and good quality sleep appeared protected when exposed to stress – accumulated life stressors did not appear to lead to greater shortening.
The study was published in Molecular Psychiatry.