Longevity Experts Agree
Written by Dr. Fuhrman’s colleague Jeff Novick, M.S., R. D. for the January 2003 edition of Healthy Times:
The most powerful anti-aging tools available are diet and exercise. It is fair to say that just about everyone is looking for the fountain of youth—the secret to longevity. But most of us are not just looking for a long life, we want a long healthy life. After all, what’s the purpose of living long if you can’t enjoy it?
These days, we are bombarded with product after product promising to be the fountain of youth. There are even claims that aging is a disease that can be “cured.” Advertisers say that aging is caused by a decline in certain hormones (such as melatonin, testosterone, human growth hormone, DHEA, and a host of others).They say that if you just take these hormones (which are very expensive), you can stop the aging process. People are running to them in droves and spending huge amounts of money on them.
But is aging caused by a decline in these hormones? Or is the decline in hormones a normal part of the normal aging process? Here is what a few experts on longevity had to say about the subject. The PBS television show, “Closer to Truth,” is a series of discussions by leading scientists on the fundamental issues of science. Segment 108 dealt with the question, “Can you really extend your life?” The host of the show was Robert Lawrence Kuhn, Ph.D., and the panel of experts featured Roy Walford, M.D., professor at UCLA Medical School and author of The 120-Year Diet and The Anti-Aging Plan; W. French Anderson, M.D., Director of the USC Gene Therapy Laboratories and known as the “Father of Gene Therapy”; Arthur S. De Vany, Ph.D., professor of economics at University of California at Irvine and the author of Evolutionary Fitness; Sherwin Nuland, M.D., clinical professor of surgery at Yale University, where he also teaches medical history and bioethics, and author of the bestselling books, How We Die and How We Live; and Gregory Stock, Ph.D., Director of UCLA’s Program on Medicine, Technology, and Society, where he focuses on genetic engineering.
Drawing on all of the expertise and experience of this panel, it would be reasonable to expect that they would reveal a multitude of chemical, biological, and technological advances that might enhance longevity. But their recommendations were entirely physiological. They did not recommend any new products or technologies, but stated, in essence, that our longevity is entirely up to us. Here is what they recommended:
Eat a plant-based diet that is low in calories but high in nutrients; take low-dose supplements; exercise vigorously and regularly; and stay mentally and physically active.
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