The Golden Girls star Betty White turned 99 on Jan. 17, and before her big day, she revealed four secrets about how to live a long and happy life.
She’s always moving.
When asked what she believes her good health is related to, White said genetics might have something to do with it. “My dad passed away at 83 and my mom at 85,” she said to Parade magazine. “They kept moving right up until the very last day.”
White says she has found creative tricks to keep moving over the years. “My two-story house and bad memory has turned out to be a good thing, I’m up and down my stairs all day,” she reported to Parade. “That’s my daily exercise.”
She doesn’t starve herself of good things.
White has not dealt with salads for decades. In fact, she has said on The Late Show with David Letterman, that she likes to “mix wheatgrass, carob and soy paste, put in the garbage and cook herself a big-a** piece of pork,” White joked. Bottom line: She always remembers to treat herself. The comedian also admitted to Parade magazine that her top foods are vodka and hot dogs, “in that order.”
She keeps working.
White credits her full and happy life to “having a good agent who keeps me working,” she recently said to People magazine. She also believes in the idea of pursuing your passions. “Don’t put all your focus on you—that wears out real fast,” White said during a 2017 interview. “It’s not difficult to find things you enjoy and indulge in them.”
Her laughter keeps her young.
White’s best tip for a long life has nothing to do with exercise or diet. Have a good sense of humor. “Don’t be too serious about yourself,” she said to People magazine. “You can’t lie to yourself.”
She said last year that the optimism is worth it. “It might sound corny, but I try to see the humorous side, not the downside,” she stated. “I get bored with those who complain a lot. It’s a big waste of time.”
“Enjoy life,” she said. “Focus on the positive, not the negative. A lot of people focus on anything they can complain about, rather than saying, ‘Hey, that was wonderful!’”