5 Links For A Longer, Healthier Life

Daily supplements? Check. Walking 3 miles a day? Check. Aversion to physical risk? Definitely. Signing up for cryonics? In process.

Yes, I think it’s fair to say I think a lot about life extension.

Maybe it’s because I think life is so interesting that I don’t want to die. Maybe it’s because it seems likely that in my lifetime people will have the option to live indefinitely. Or maybe I am captured by the words of Edward Young, British poet:

“Still seems it strange, that thou shouldst live forever?

Is it less strange, that thou shouldst live at all?

This is a miracle; and that no more.”

You may disagree about the feasibility or desirability of indefinite life extension. But you probably still want to live the healthiest possible life you can, right? Optimizing our “healthspans” – how long we can healthfully live – was one of the forecasts at IFTF’s Health Horizons conference in June.

Here are 5 things I’ve come across that seem like promising avenues to learn about for living healthier longer, from most mainstream to most unconventional.

1. Transcend – An interactive questionnaire and book by Ray Kurzweil and Terry Grossman that breaks down healthy life into 9 detailed steps: Talk with your doctor, Relaxation, Assessment, Nutrition, Supplements, Calorie reduction, Exercise, New technologies, and Detoxification. It’s thoroughly researched and one of the best sets of guidelines I’ve seen.

2. Life Extension Conference – The first in a series of health conferences is being held this October 9-10 in the Bay Area, titled Personalized Life Extension 2010. IFTF blog readers get $100 off the registration price when you register with the code IFTF. Topics to be covered include blood testing, supplements, self-experimentation, inflammation, sleep, and caloric restriction, among many others.

3. New Organ Prize and Network – A prize and community started by the Methuselah Foundation that challenges scientists to “duplicate and successfully transplant a fully functioning new organ made from a patient’s own cells by 2020.” This is regenerative medicine at its best, and offers hope to tens of thousands of people waiting for transplants.

4. Seth Roberts’ Blog – Seth is a pioneer in self-experimentation, and demonstrated his findings on eating half a stick of butter a day at the most recent Quantified Self Show&Tell meetup. His blog is a fascinating mix of theories, discoveries, and questions on the path of personal science.

5. Alcor – Any life extension list wouldn’t be complete without cryonics. Alcor is the world leader of cryonics – basically freezing people as soon as possible after death. Bodies are cooled to temperatures below -120°C to preserve them for thawing when nanomedical technology becomes available to repair whatever the person died from. This is not science fiction, it’s real science, with some of the smartest scientists in the world working on it. It probably deserves a whole post on its own, so I’ll leave it at that for now.

Now it’s time to walk home, pop my supplements, and tuck myself in for a good night’s rest. Here’s wishing you a long and healthy life!

Original post at http://iftf.org/node/3568