While humans may not have the answer to eternal life just yet (we’ll have to wait until after we storm Area 51 for that), one woman has shared her secret to a long and happy life.
Centenarian Louise Signore celebrated her 107th birthday this week, and though you may think her longevity is definitely down to a mixture of good genes, good health, good diet and perhaps a bit of good luck too, Louise puts it down to something much simpler.
Her advice – never get married.
Born in 1912 in Harlem, New York, Louise moved to the Bronx when she was 14 and has lived there ever since. The 107-year-old celebrated her birthday with more than 100 people at a party at her local community centre. However, she did tell WCBS she’d ‘had enough parties’.
I think the secret of 107: I never got married. I think that’s the secret. My sister says ‘I wish I never got married’.
Louise’s sister is also a centenarian, having recently turned 102 herself.
Speaking about her active lifestyle, Louise added:
If they have exercise, I do the exercise. If they have dancing, I dance. I still a do a little dancing. After my lunch, I will play bingo, so I had a full day.
The good health runs in their family, too, revealing her sister ‘doesn’t take any medicine’, while Louise herself just takes ‘a high blood pressure pill, that’s all!’
Of course, getting to 107 years old isn’t always plain sailing. Louise is legally blind, recently fought off pneumonia, and a few years ago, aged 103, survived an assault and robbery in her apartment building.
Louise’s friend, Deborah Whitaker said:
She’s got no walking cane, no wheelchair. She does all her shopping. She’s awesome.
God bless this amazing woman who is 107 years old today! Big party with her friends and family in the Bronx. Lots of keys to living so long — including eating Italian food, dancing, and she emphasized never getting married 😂💕 pic.twitter.com/YJUD9iD5s2
— Jessica Layton (@JLaytonTV) July 31, 2019
While Aisha Parillon, senior director of JASA, which runs senior centres throughout New York City, said:
I think that her connection with her neighbors in the community and also her friends here at the senior center help to keep her going.
Louise cites her Italian upbringing as helping her get to such a ripe old age, saying: ‘Italian food. Italian food is very good for you. I was brought up with very good food. No soda, no cake.’
America’s oldest woman is Alelia Murphy, who is 114 years old, according to CNN. She too lives in Harlem, where Louise originated, so they must be doing something right in the Big Apple!
If you have a story you want to tell send it to UNILAD via [email protected]
Charlie Cocksedge is a journalist at UNILAD. He graduated from the University of Manchester with an MA in Creative Writing, where he learnt how to write in the third person, before getting his NCTJ. His work has also appeared in such places as The Guardian, PN Review and the bin.