My Copy: 9780471327943 (image from bn.com)
This is a health book I’m glad I picked up to read over and think about, largely because with really short chapters and the number of topics covered, there’s something to learn for anyone. The Longevity Strategy may seem miraculous, but honestly, it’s a lot of research and science used to back up the stuff we’ve been told we should do our whole lives. BUT, it does have some tips and science to back them up.
How can you live a long life, even up to 100? Good sleep, proper eating, exercise… among other things. It’s not a terribly exciting book, but I had to remind myself that this book was published in 1998, over 20 years ago now. Brain science has come a long way since then and still has a long way to go. I did think it was a good time-capsule, putting together what was figured out in 1998 and dispensed to the masses with minimal scientific lingo. Reading it today, though, if you’d been keeping up with medical stories and science on the brain and body, this might seem quaint.
There’s a lot about habits, mindset, your surroundings, and how these things affect your brain. It’s not a fad diet book or anything like that, or some self-help guide. It approaches life and longevity very broadly, which is why the chapters are short. There is no simple answer to longevity: it takes a lot of little things that make up our lives. Some things we take for granted, others we’ve never really considered, let alone how to deal with them.
It’s not an exciting text, and definitely a little outdated (which can’t be helped, the bane of science-related books, I’m afraid), but is a good start to finding your own way to a longer life if you want it, and to see the things that make living beyond a century more possible.
I think, because it’s a bit outdated, it’s a good resource to give some ideas as to what to look for and do some more study on your own. I can imagine the brain-body connection books that have come out since which probably reference this one, so it’s worth a look.
5 thoughts on “The Longevity Strategy: How to live to 100 using the brain-body connection, by David Mahoney & Richard Restak, M.D.”
I’m not sure I would like to live to 100 or more years. But I guess it all depends on my health. To be incapacitated and old would not be life for me. I guess one would have to define life and living.
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Definitely so true. Wouldn’t be worth it if you didn’t have the mental capacity to be able to enjoy it or still be yourself.
But that’s also what it was going for, not just a long life, but with a long active streak (hopefully). Few things scare me more than getting dementia or Alzheimers. Scarier than cancer to me.
My dad died of lung cancer long ago. He was a heavy smoker. My mom died recently due to her dementia. She lived mostly by herself on the East Coast, and I live on the West Coast. In the last several years of her life it seems her neighbors and “friends” see the change in her and at times took advantage of that. It wasn’t until I was getting her affairs in order that I found out about things like that.
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That’s the scariest part–being at the mercy of others and hoping they won’t screw you over, or being so out of touch you don’t know if you’re okay or not financially, physically, anything.