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Paul Mccartney performing for a live audience

Paul McCartney Still Making His Mark

Singer, songwriter, and musician Paul McCartney easily out-works and out-plays many performers half his age. For decades, he has practiced the top lifestyle habits associated with healthy longevity.

Scientifically reviewed by: Dr. Gary Gonzalez, MD, in July 2023. Written by: Laurie Mathena.

In June of 2023, Sir Paul McCartney turned 81 years old. But don’t expect the former Beatles singer, songwriter, and musician to retire anytime soon.

As he explained in an interview, “I’m not old, and I’m not retiring.”

Indeed, despite his advanced years, McCartney is working harder than ever.

He continues to produce new music, write books, appear on popular television shows like Saturday Night Live and Carpool Karaoke, and speak out for causes he believes in.

In 2022, McCartney did a 16-show tour in two months, in sold-out venues across the United States.

He easily out-works and out-plays many performers half his age.

These feats leave many people wondering: How does he do it?

It turns out he practices many of the top lifestyle habits known to be associated with healthy longevity.

A Lifelong Gift

McCartney’s good health and vitality are not a stroke of luck.

For more than 50 years, he has faithfully practiced many of the top lifestyle habits associated with healthy longevity.

At the top of the list is staying active.

In addition to performing 2.5-hour concerts, McCartney does regular cross-training workouts, he runs, and he practices yoga.

“I don’t have a trainer,” he explained in an interview on the SmartLess podcast. “It’s just me.”

He does leg stretches, spends time on an elliptical trainer, and ends with “a bit of running.” Overall, he says he spends about 5 to 10 minutes per exercise.

“It’s not a huge workout, but it’s good,” said McCartney. “I like it.”

And if he’s working out at a local gym, he says he likes to show off his headstands, which are part of his regular yoga practice.

McCartney has also been practicing transcendental meditation since his days with the Beatles in the 1960s, when he trained under the yoga guru, Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.

Transcendental meditation involves sitting with eyes closed for 20 minutes, twice a day, repeating a mantra.

“It was a great gift that Maharishi has given us,” said McCartney at a press conference. “It came during a period at the end of the 60s when we were looking for something that could bring us more stability, and it was a lifelong gift. It’s something you can call on at any time.”

Since then, studies have connected transcendental meditation to reductions in anxiety, depression, and negative emotions,1 and it has been shown to improve markers of learning and memory.2

Meat-Free Monday

McCartney is a vegetarian, which he credits as a reason why he’s so fit as an octogenarian.

But for McCartney, his meat-free lifestyle is about more than its health benefits. It is about ending animal cruelty, protecting the planet, and conserving natural resources.

“I have been a vegetarian for 40 years,” said McCartney on “I like the idea of saving animals, saving people’s health, and saving this beautiful planet of ours.”

In 2009, McCartney spoke before the European Parliament to discuss how meat contributes to the destruction of the planet. Today, that speech is recorded in a book entitled, Less Meat, Less Heat.

In it, he points out that, “The livestock industry produces more greenhouse gases than all of the transport sectors put together—cars, planes, trains and trucking.”

He also proposed a solution.

“What I’m here today to suggest is that the first step is a Meat-Free Monday, or a meat-free day. I urge you, each of you, to do your bit for your people, for their children, and for the planet they will inherit. Go meat-free, one day.”

To that end, McCartney founded a nonprofit campaign called the Meat-free Monday Initiative with his two daughters, Stella and Mary McCartney.

By having at least one plant-based day per week, the initiative claims, people can help slow climate change, conserve natural resources, and improve their health.

According to a recent study by Oxford University’s department of public health, eating meat no more than three times per week could prevent 31,000 deaths from heart disease, 9,000 deaths from cancer, and 5,000 deaths from stroke per year.3

But perhaps McCartney’s biggest secret weapon is his eternal optimism. This longevity factor has been proven to contribute to a 15% longer lifespan, and a greater likelihood of living beyond age 85.4

“I’ve always been an optimistic person because I don’t like the alternative,” said McCartney while answering questions on his official website, “I always try and see the good side—the silver lining—and if you’re lucky, it arrives.”

Got Back

Now into his eighth decade, McCartney continues to write new music and challenge himself creatively.

During COVID-19, he wrote and recorded his latest solo album, McCartney III, on his own. This collection of critically acclaimed work earned two Grammy nominations.

He wrote a book called The Lyrics: 1956 to Present, which hit #1 on the New York Times bestseller list.

He wrote a children’s book called Grandude’s Green Submarine, a sequel to the New York Time’s best-selling book, Hey Grandude.

He starred in the Hulu docuseries McCartney 3,2,1.

And he helped produce Peter Jackson’s Beatles documentary, Get Back.

These are impressive additions to an already illustrious resume that includes 18 Grammy Awards, an Academy Award, two spots in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and two Grammy Lifetime Achievement Awards (recognizing both his career with the Beatles and his accomplishments as a solo artist).

And in 1997, he was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II for his “service to music,” dubbing him with the title, Sir Paul McCartney.

His mark on music history is undeniable—and ongoing.

In 2022, McCartney performed a sold out 16-show U.S. tour in two months called Got Back.

But for McCartney, it’s safe to say that he never left. •

If you have any questions on the scientific content of this article, please call a Life Extension Wellness Specialist at 1-866-864-3027.


  1. Joshi SP, Wong AI, Brucker A, et al. Efficacy of Transcendental Meditation to Reduce Stress Among Health Care Workers: A Randomized Clinical Trial. JAMA Netw Open. 2022 Sep 1;5(9):e2231917.
  2. Waters L, Barsky A, Ridd A, et al. Contemplative Education: A Systematic, Evidence-Based Review of the effect of Meditation Interventions in Schools. Educational Psychology Review.2014 2015/03/01;27(1):103-34.
  3. Appleby PN, Thorogood M, Mann JI, et al. The Oxford Vegetarian Study: an overview.Am J Clin Nutr.1999 Sep;70(3 Suppl):525S-31S.
  4. Lee LO, James P, Zevon ES, et al. Optimism is associated with exceptional longevity in 2 epidemiologic cohorts of men and women. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2019 Sep 10;116(37):18357-62.