If you're going to live to be over 100-years-old, you may as well do the things you enjoy. Theresa Rowley of Grand Rapids, Michigan just celebrated her 104th birthday on January 1, 2018 and now she's sharing the secret to her long life, and it's not what you think.
Theresa moved into the Sentinel Retirement Community 15 years ago when she was 89-years-old. It was here that she celebrated her 104th birthday last week.
"I'm surprised that I'm 104," she said. "It just doesn't seem like I should be that old."
"When I was 100, I thought I'd never be 104; I thought I'd pass away by that time but it just didn't happen," Theresa said. "Then I turn 101, and nothing happens."
"Here I am 104, and still nothing happens."
It could be her daily consumption of her favorite drink that is the reason why nothing has happened.
Theresa admits that she drinks at least one can of Diet Coke each day.
"I drink it because I like it," Theresa said. "I'm going shopping Wednesday, and I need more Diet Coke. I have a bag full of empty Diet Coke cans that I need to return to buy more Diet Coke."
Born in Illinois in 1914, 68 years before the soda hit the market, Theresa moved to North Dakota before settling in Michigan.
Theresa celebrated her 104th birthday with cake and the support of the members of her retirement community.
While consuming Diet Coke won't hurt you, nutritionists don't recommend starting a diet soda habit if you don't already drink it. Like everything else, moderation is key.
"Scientific consensus has yet to find a direct, indisputable link between diet beverages and harmful health effects," says Jaclyn London, MS, RD, CDN Nutrition Directory at the Good Housekeeping Institute. "On the flip side, calories from added sugars — especially those found in sugary beverages like regular soda, juice, and even coffee drinks — are linked to a slew of chronic diseases as well as obesity. Bottom line: If your current eating pattern works for you — and helps you get to 104 years on the planet — keep it up!"