Can you change the day you die? According to the findings of a study investigating the diet, environment, lifestyle and health of over half a million people from across Europe, you can.

The European Prospective Investigation of Cancer (EPIC) study examined the impact of all four areas on life expectancy. It revealed that by exercising more, improving your diet and stopping smoking, you could potentially add an extra 11 years to your time on earth.

The basics of good health might be straightforward but far too many people are getting them wrong. Consequently far too many people are dying younger than they should be.

By choosing to drive to the newsagent, remain at your desk during your lunchbreak or spend your evenings in front of the television, you could be cutting your life short by three years. Similarly by skipping your five portions of fruit and vegetables you will be taking off another three years and if you smoke, a further five years. Bad news then for those guilty of all three offences who are dramatically downsizing their life expectancy.

It’s not all doom and gloom. Reassuringly the study also revealed how simple it is to turn things around. When it comes to adding years to your life it’s the little things that count.