Would you like to live forever? Sounds good right? However, not everyone is fascinated by this possibility, because doubt is always the same: would be great to live forever, but under what conditions? Faced with old age, the desire is to live well, without diseases and without being a burden on one’s family. So living longer is a desire of many, as long as they live healthy.
And, what if they told you that you could live forever, without getting old? What if you could live forever without suffering illness and physical or brain damage? This situation would completely change our perspective and could make us commit more to achieve the result.
Well, some scientists study this possibility, and work on theories and therapies that can keep our body and mind fully efficient to gain 20 – 30 years or more.
If we think of the average age of the last century, we know that people lived up to 60 years in industrialized countries. This limit is 80 years old today. The ultra centenarians are now more and more and reach an age of 110 years, sometimes up to 120. The lengthening of human life has often put researchers in a position to ask themselves: how long can the human body live?
Analyzing the average life span of the inhabitants of the United States, the United Kingdom, France and Japan from 1968 to the present, the biologists Bryan G. Hughes and Siegfried Hekimi have discovered that, indeed, there is no real limit to human life or, if it exists, we cannot calculate or reach it today. We cannot say what the age limit will be. In fact, by calculating the trends of past years, it is clear that the maximum duration or in any case the average of human life is destined to grow.
Aubrey de Gray’s SENS project
The English bioenterologist Aubrey de Gray developed the SENS – Strategies for Engineered Negligible Senescence project. The project aims to cure aging. So not only to lengthen the life and age well, but to eliminate aging.
Kurzweil and the Bridge to Immortality
Raymond Kurzweil, computer science and artificial intelligence expert, has another approach that is based on a mix between lifestyle and technology.
The point is to keep body and mind healthy for as long as possible with a healthy and balanced diet, avoiding all harmful activities such as smoking or alcohol. So far nothing new, we all know that virtuous behavior protects us from disease.
But we also know that this is not enough. Think of one of the longest-lived women in the world Jeanne Calment who smoked all her life and died at 122 years. Many centenarians, having been born at the beginning of the 1900s, had no particular regime, they use to eat meat, smoke and drink alcohol. Longevity therefore lies not only in our behavior, but also in genetics.
Kurzweil believes that technology progress will find a method to reverse the aging process, to cure any disease and to remedy currently irreparable injuries. Kurzweil has therefore focused on a lifestyle, which is not the final solution, but aims to increase his chances of living enough until the scientist will find a way to make him immortal.
Kurzweil describes his theory as a bridge. His lifestyle is a bridge that allows him to arrive at a second bridge made of biotechnology and nanotechnology that will allow human beings to live longer, so the second bridge leads to the third bridge that is, at last, immortality.
Several elements of Kurzweil’s method are easy to understand: he exercises regularly, does not eat in excess and does not use drugs. On the contrary, many others are arguable and are not easy to follow for ordinary people. Every day Kurzweil takes 150 supplements, drinks 8 to 10 glasses of alkaline water and ten cups of green tea. In addition he drinks many glasses of red wine. He believes his lifestyle is a good way to reprogram his biochemistry.
Although this is not confirmed scientifically, Kurzweil and others believe that taking large amounts of water is necessary to remove toxins from the body and that alkaline water allows the body to store important enzymes used to neutralize metabolic acid waste. For this reason, Kurzweil avoids soft drinks and coffee, both acids. Kurzweil believes that acidic drinks deprive the reserves of detoxifying enzymes.
Moreover, Kurzweil undergoes intravenous transfusions of chemical cocktails that he believes will reprogram his biochemistry. It regularly measures the chemical composition of its body fluids, undergoes preventive examinations for numerous diseases and disorders and records in detail all the foods it takes.
Finally, Kurzweil consumes only organic foods with a low fat load and has eliminated all types of sugar for years. Instead it consumes vegetables, lean meats, tofu and carbohydrates with low glycemic content, and uses only extra virgin olive oil. Finally, consume foods rich in Omega-3 fatty acids.
He considers very important to allow himself a sufficient amount of sleep for physical and psychological health and maintains low levels of stress through meditation and receiving weekly massages. He does daily exercise walking, cycling and using gym equipment, but he does not recommend high impact training.
Waiting for the Future: the Cryotechnology
The research on cryonics is based on the following hypotheses, which have not yet been confirmed or denied by science:
If one of these hypotheses is not true, the goal of restoring cryopreserved individuals cannot be achieved.