April's CR Diary

A diary of a 30 year old woman following CRON, or Caloric Restriction with Optimal Nutrition, for health and life extension.

Wednesday, November 10, 2004

The Prevention of Paraplegia Through The Non-Jumping Off of Cliffs

is not a victory for neurosurgery.

Thus, I attempt to introduce you, my darling bloggiefriends to the concept that preventing the diesease of aging (heart disease, cancer, diabetes, stroke, etc.) is not the same thing as actually preventing aging.

Don't get me wrong. I am all for Preventing What Will Kill You (see Walford, _Beyond 120 Year Diet_ Ignore his lowfat recommendations.) As everyone who knows me knows, I used to fantasize about teaching former heart disease sufferers how to cook lowfat food. I used to envision a lowfat vegan universe, in which meat eaters would pay more for their health insurance. I was all about preventing disease.

Until I read The List, of course. I had always had an intuitive understanding of the fact that CR slows down all the processes of aging, but I didn't realize just how different that is in terms of the actual number of years to be gained. Just playing dodgeball with disease won't add too many years to your life. But actually slowing, or reversing, or stopping aging, that's a different game all together.

That's why I was a bit frustrated at some of the scientists' presentations where they talked lots about preventing cancer and heart disease, but they scooted this issue of actually slowing aging. I understand that we have no certain biomarkers for it (and that we have a lot of dead rats to show for the effort to find them) and that scientists are sometimes reluctant to speculate when they just don't know based on the data at hand. But I think it's important that we recognize the difference in the two concepts: disease prevention vs. aging prevention.

I wasn't in a high risk group for diseases of aging as a lowfat, fit, healthy vegan. But I wasn't doing anything about aging. So I choose to do CR, and do anything I can to help with the search for the immortality pill, instead of hopping along my merry Ornish way.

I'm gradually introducing the topic, in an effort to prepare you for a discussion of one of the most fascinating conversations I've ever had, or witnessed, or been in a room with.

But you'll have to remain in suspense... I have to make dinner and memorize Aubrey de Grey's website. Seems like it would be a shortcut to just make dinner for Aubrey de Grey and have him explain it all to me, and he seems like the kind of fellow you would enjoy having over for dinner, but since he's in Cambridge that might be impractical. And I don't know what he eats. One thing about the CR brothers... at least you know what to cook for them.


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