For as long as humans have sought ways to control their environment, treat disease, and improve their lives, they have also searched for ways to extend life and postpone death. This human tendency persists even today. A longevity revolution is emerging that will involve new biotechnological advances in both traditional and natural medicine. New life-science tools are rapidly developing and traditional natural therapies are evolving – both finding scientific validation that will support the longevity revolution in human bio-enhancement and life extension.
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Anti-Aging and Life Extension
A very important realization in the practice of medicine in the last 10 years has been the far-reaching acceptance of the fact that important facets of our health are directly under our personal control. For example, physicians currently know that a person’s probabilities of development of heart disease and some strains of cancer are powerfully determined by our dieting and behaviour. Scientific findings reported in the last few years have given us methods of slowing the manifestations of the senescence process and preventing many degenerative diseases. Our future health and our personal life expectancy are potentially under our individual control to a far larger level than is usually realized.
During the last one hundred years, life expectancy increased by greater than 50%. Most of this increase has been as a result of discoveries of remedies for previously fatal diseases and information on how to halt the spread of transmissible diseases. (Tuberculosis was the principal reason for death in the U.S.A. in the 19th century.)
For the most part, taking advantage of this great increase in life expectancy has not required any exceptional action on the part of the individual person. Medical treatment has been something a person receives After the beginning of illness.
The previously used methods of enhancing our health and longevity are reaching their limits, though. Most medical researchers believe that we cannot increase average life expectancy beyond about age 85 by using the present-day methods of “curative” medicine.
The significance of preventive medicine is becoming more and more apparent. The methods that are most likely to increase health and life expectancy without limit are methods that must be used by the individual person. The total body of human knowledge in medicine, especially in aging and anti-aging research, is now doubling about every 4 years. The remarkable breakthroughs of the past few years have given us the ability to be individually in control of our own health and longevity to an extent never before possible.
Two things are of primary significance to anyone undertaking a serious life extension program: self-education and medical oversight.
Each individual must take complete responsibility for their health. The medical professionals that one confers with should be regarded as contracted leaders in their fields — experts who need to be discharged if they do their job badly. Their opinions and opinions should always be taken seriously, but the final responsibility for actions taken with respect to an person’s health must always stay with that individual. Whether one’s doctor is an expert in preventive medicine, or an authoritarian who considers life extension to be false medicine, the individual person is responsible for self-education on health topics and for making final decisions.
This is particularly true in anti-aging and life extension and sophisticated techniques of preventive medical science. Medical professionals just can’t be expected to know about these topics. each week, more than eight thousand studies on medical research are published in the scientific literature. When these studies are published, there is no mechanism in place for getting this information into the hands of medical practitioners. In addition, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) actively bars much of the flow of information from the scientific literature to medical practicioners and the public at large. FDA obstruction of the free flow of data is a principal reason why individuals who actively keep themselves informed in health and medicine will be far ahead of the average person in health and lifespan.
A document such as this cannot begin to be an all-around guide to the field of study. It is designed as a guide to other knowledge references and as a source of data not readily available from other sources. It gives little coverage to basics, such as antioxidant vitamins, that have been reported about extensively elsewhere.
This report likewise does not review the topic of calorie restriction, which is the most well-documented and accepted form of anti-aging and life extension. The vast majority of people assume calorie restriction to be a much too difficult and demanding way of life. Calorie restriction (CR) is the only method currently proven to decelerate the aging process at its fundamental level. Other present day methods may have some minor effects on retarding the basic aging rate, but they are mainly targeted at greatly retarding the manifestations of aging. There is ample reason to believe that, by staying alive and healthy using the non-CR methods, one can remain alive long enough to be able to use future non-CR life extension techniques that will arrest the underlying processes of ageing completely.
Stated another way, only calorie restriction is currently able to push the maximum lifespan significantly beyond its current limitations (about 120 years in humans). It is likely, nonetheless, that full application of the current non-CR techniques of life extension can increase the average life expectancy well past the (currently-average) mid-70s by extending the healthy middle years by almost thirty years.
Anybody seriously engaging in a regimen of life extension or advanced preventative medicine needs to study how to utilize a medical library. This might seem like a great deal of work, but the most common mistake made in this area is to spend great sums of money on nutritional supplements while paying attention to only 1 or two “experts” in this field. It is important that anybody who plans to spend the remainder of a lengthened lifespan on a life extension program makes sure that the time and money that such an effort requires is spent with wisdom. Self-education and reading about these subjects with a questioning mindset is the only way to do this. Nobody needs to entrust their health to any one source of information.
Anyone attempting a serious life extension regimen needs to be under medical supervision and should have complete blood chemistry tests at least once a year. A physician specializing in comprehensive life extension programs may be hard to find, but your physician doesn’t have to approve of everything you do. You will at least need a physician who can order blood tests and supervise over your general state of wellness. You ought to get and hold on to copies of blood chemistry and other tests for your own records.
An additional important reason for regular blood chemistry testing is motivation. Some benefits of a comprehensive life extension plan take place quickly, but numerous benefits will not become manifest for ten or twenty years. The results of your blood chemistry tests can give you motivation to continue to do those things that will provide profound long term advantages. Many people are surprised at the extent of control they have over the chemical makeup of their blood.
Tests of blood chemistry give you a good indication of your heart disease risk. They can also detect numerous serious diseases long before they might be detected otherwise. Regular blood chemistry testing, on its own, can significantly extend the healthy years of your life.
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