107-Year-Old Woman Says Secret to Her Longevity is 'I Never Got Married'

A Bronx woman celebrating her 107th birthday says the secret to her long life is staying single.

"I think the secret of 107 [is] I never got married," Louise Signore told CBS New York. "I think that's the secret. My sister says 'I wish I never got married.'"

Her sister is also alive and well—and 102.

Signore celebrated her special birthday at the JASA Bartow Senior Center in Co-op City, complete with balloons, cake, music and presents.

She was born in Harlem in 1912 but has lived in the Bronx since moving there at age 14. Signore still lives alone and independently, but stays active and is well-connected with the community, according to other partygoers.

"She's got no walking cane, no wheelchair. She does all her shopping. She's awesome," friend Deborah Whitaker told WLNY.

Signore says the only medicine she takes is a pill for high blood pressure. "That's all."

Louise Signore
Louise Signore says her 102-year-old sister tells her, "I wish I never got married." WLNY CBS 2

Asked what else has contributed to her longevity, Signore told WCBS: "Italian food. Italian food is very good for you."

Ironically, numerous studies have suggested single people actually die younger than their married counterparts: One report indicated bachelors die eight to 17 years earlier than married men—while single women pass away seven to 15 years earlier than married ones. Researchers believe lower incomes and less support networks could be responsible.

"If you're a couple, a spouse may be after you to eat better and go the doctor," sociologist David Roelfs told NBC News in 2011. "Sometimes it's just easier to be healthier and less of a risk taker when you're married."

People looking to prolong their lives often turn to diet and exercise, but many centenarians have attributed their longevity to pretty counterintuitive strategies: In September, 106-year-old Edith Wylie told Montana's Great Falls Tribune that, aside from good genes, her long life is due to "bourbon, water and Cheetos while watching 5 o'clock news."

Margaret Young of Sutton, England, turned 108 in October and told The Chad her secret was "to be happy and have plenty of cups of teas."

Emma Morano of Italy, the oldest verified person on Earth when she died at 117 in 2017, gave credit to a particular odd dietary habit: three eggs a day, two of which were eaten raw. She started the diet after being diagnosed with anemia as a young adult, according to the BBC.

Like Signore, Morano was also single for most of her life after separating from her husband back in 1938.

At 117, Japan's Kane Tanaka is the current verified oldest living person. She , has attributed her longevity to family, sleep and hope. But it's worth noting Tanaka reportedly drinks three cans of coffees a day and eats "plenty of candy."