Centenarian Sisters Celebrated in Prince George's County

Samantha Kemp-Jackson

100-year-old twins reveal the secret to a long life

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Twin sisters Elaine Foster and Evelyn Lowe have celebrated their 100th birthdaysDarvell Green via The Today Show

Imagine living for a century. Now, imagine this incredible feat times two!

Twin sisters in Prince George's County were regaled with a drive-by birthday party in celebration of the twins' birthdays that had passed in March of this year.

Miss Elaine Foster and Miss Evelyn Lowe, both lifelong residents of Prince George's County, received gift certificates to their favorite restaurant: Bob's Big Boy, in addition to bouquets of flowers, balloons an gift baskets from well-wishers.

There was much cause for celebration - after all, many people don't get to boast about a century of life and living. The drive-by celebration was part of the the official launch of the county's Office of Community Relations’ 100 Events of Summer initiative. This first event heralds a planned series of events that will occur throughout the summer with the goal of connecting residents across Prince George's County. 

"Listen to your parents." - Advice from 100-year-old twin sisters

VIDEO: Twins in Maryland Celebrate Their 100th Birthday

List of the Oldest Living People in the United States

The Key to a Long and Successful Life is Revealed

When asked about how to achieve a "successful life" and if they had any advice that they would give to young people, the answer given was simple: " Listen to your parents."

When asked what they would be purchasing with their gift certificates, the twins responded that they will be using the gift certificates to buy sangria.

The secret to their long lives is simple, according to the sisters. They both attributed their advanced age and health to consistently taking care of themselves and by also getting yearly check-ups from their doctors.

Prince George's County Executive Angela Alsobrooks was on hand to celebrate the ladies' special birthday celebration, and shared pictures from the event on her Twitter feed.

"Their spirit is really unbelievable, just amazing," Alsobrooks said. "We're just really lucky to have them here."

"They have been through so much and to be such powerful women to have come out of that in such a strong way, it's admirable," said Karla Maiden-Vazquez Foster, the great-granddaughter of Elaine. "I truly hope that one day I can be as amazing as they are."

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Senior woman blowing out birthday candlesPexels

Is 100 the new 80? Centenarians are becoming more common

STATISTICS: Number of people worldwide who are 100 years or older

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The Ingredients For a Longer Life

VIDEO: 100 and Counting: Secrets to a Long Life

According to Statista,16.5 percent of the American population was 65 years old or over in 2019, a figure which is expected to reach 22 percent by 2050. With a rapidly aging population in the United States, new factors come into consideration for citizens and the government alike. These include but are not limited to the nature of work and retirement, the economy and the birth rate, which has been falling over the last 20 years. This fact means that there are not as many younger people available to replace the seniors who are leaving the workforce.

In relation to the global population, it is projected that there will be over three million people worldwide aged 100 years and over by 2050.

The Okinawa

Okinawa, a group of islands known as the "land of the immortals," is just south of mainland Japan. The residents here are famous for their stellar health and the fact that they have the longest life spans and the islands have the highest rates of centenarians in the world. By the most recent counts, 3,000 villagers are 100 years old or older. One hundred and seventy-one are in their 90s. Japan itself has 70,000 people aged 100 or over, which is significant in comparison to the rest of the world's population. Okinawans are not only unique in the number of centegenarians that live in this region but they have also been found to have low rates of heart disease, stroke, cancer and diabetes.

“At 80, you are merely a youth. At 90, if your ancestors invite you into heaven, ask them to wait until you are 100—then, you might consider it.” - A small stone marker in the village of Ogimi, located in the rural north of Okinawa’s main island

How long can we realistically expect to live?

According to the Center for Disease Control, life expectancy at birth in 2018 was 78.7 years for the total U.S. population—an increase of 0.1 year from 78.6 years in 2017. For males, life expectancy changed from 76.1 in 2017 to 76.2 in 2018—an increase of 0.1 year. For females, life expectancy increased 0.1 year from 81.1 years in 2017 to 81.2 in 2018.

5 Lifestyle Factors That Can Contribute to a Longer Life

One study from the American Heart Association (AHA) has found that there are five key lifestyle factors that can contribute to a longer life. They include the following:

  1. Never smoke
  2. Maintain a healthy body-mass index (BMI)
  3. Keep up moderate to vigorous exercise
  4. Abstain from excess consumption of alcohol
  5. Maintain a healthy diet

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I write about Lifestyle content with a focus on Parenting, Society and Trends. I also talk about how things have changed on my podcast, "Parenting Then and Now."

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