TN50#99, Wealth in Your 50’s, Greatest Predictor of Health in Your 80’s (NOT) 28 November 2022

Hi Team,

Happy Monday and welcome to The Next 50 #99.  Wealth in your 50’s is not a great predictor of long-term health, but you had to know that – right?  In 1938 Harvard initiated the, Harvard Study of Adult Development, also known as the Grant Study.  The Grant Study, which is now focused on the 2nd Generation, followed the lives of more than 700 men and their families for more than 80 years.

Some factors indicating positive end states focused on the following buckets:

  • Regular physical activity, (move baby move)
  • Absence of alcohol abuse, (don’t drink calories)
  • Absence of smoking, (yes, this use to be a thing)
  • Having mature mechanisms to cope with life’s ups and downs, (mindset skills)
  • A healthy weight, (when, what and how much you eat)
  • A stable marriage, (good relationships)
  • Education, (life-long learner)

Additional objective information was tracked, like blood panels, material and/or career success, etc.

Here’s a quote from the current Study Director, Dr. Robert Waldinger:

“When we gathered together everything we knew about them about at age 50, it wasn’t their middle-age cholesterol levels that predicted how they were going to grow old,” said Waldinger in a popular TED Talk. “It was how satisfied they were in their relationships. The people who were the most satisfied in their relationships at age 50 were the healthiest at age 80.” (

The bottom line for me is: If you make it to 80, QUALITY RELATIONSHIPS THROUGHOUT YOUR LIFE is the number one factor for enjoying that 9th Decade.  What else needs to be said!

Check out the summary article here, and Dr. Waldinger’s TED Talk, from 2015 (less than 13 minutes and viewed over 43 million times)here.

As always share the post with your team or anyone who might find it useful and let me know what you think!

Have a good one, Alex