Review of Lifespan: Why We Age- and Why We Don't Have To


So it's January 2022 when I am writing this and this is my first real post on the blog. This book is a fitting start to this blog as it marks the start of a large re-ignition of my passion for learning I had lost after highschool. A friend, who will probably come up a lot in the context of recommending books- so I'll call him Jake,  recommended this book to me greatly when I expressed some interest in reading non-fiction back right before the pandemic in 2020. I was 260 pounds (I am a little over 6'2") and not a very happy person. Lifepsan is not a book about dieting or living better strictly speaking but strangely in some odd way it is one of the best self help books I have ever read. The book is split into about 3 different sections- the beginning is a strong use of pathos to hook you. I do not know if David Sinclair used a ghost writer or not for this section of the book but it is extremely well written and conveys a genuine emotional hook to him- which is odd in a science book. The next section gets into the science and different methods of the aging process and methods Sinclair and his team have found to slow it down- as well as hints into what we could find in the future help this act greater. It also serves as a great biochemistry crash coarse. This is where I loved the book. I was absolutely hooked Every new chapter and page is just packed full of the most gripping science and cleverness. In this part of the book placed the seeds in me of wanting to learn more. It recommended fasting as well as some supplements- which is what made me trust the book as Sinclair really wasn't selling anything. The third part I initially didin't like much. However as the years have gone by I have come to appreciate it more and more. Essentially the purpose of the third section of the book is to arm the reader for when they inevitably encounter moral arguments against life expansion. For some reason- everyone seems to be against this when I bring it up. They have this idea in their heads of some Tuck Everlasting curse that is to be immortal. Or maybe we just live frailer and poorer lives. Life extension as it currently stands seems to have some pretty hard limits. We don't understand everything yet- not even close. But what we do have perfectly helps the argument- it lets us live healthier, for longer. The point of life extension isn't to desperately cling to life hooked up to a thousand tubes in some hospital bed to get a few more days marked off on the calendar. If I offered anyone the chance to choose: "would you rather have the mind or the body of a thirty year old for the rest of your life?" It would be a hard gosh darn choice. What life extension does is not only make that offer real- but you don't even have to choose! Any extra days in my life- whether its 50 or 10000 that I feel just as healthy mentally and physically as I currently am, is objectively better than the days where I live less physically and mentally healthy than right now. So my argument is thus: unless you currently want to die- you want to live forever. Its a rather brutal and absolutist thought, and I usually always argue in favor of spectrums but this is pretty black and white for once. After reading this book I chose to start intermittent fasting. I don't eat until after 7 pm. As well as I am vegetarian and a bad vegan. I do break these rules when with family on holiday or on vacation as they're rules of convenience- but ultimately for the last 2 years I have been following these rules rather well for 90% of my days. I am a CNA and wasn't a student back then so I was just picking up every day during the pandemic (as it started just as i finished this book- i still remember how difficult it was to not break my fast during nursing week and all these donuts and delicious treats were being gifted to "healthcare heroes" on our floor) and it works well for my 7a-7p shifts. I am currently 185 pounds after these 2 years. More importantly- since I had graduated highschool online in the spring of 2018 I was not a very happy person and reading very little when I used to love to read. This books wonderful presentation of its science to be understanding is just what I needed. My passion had been re-lit and in the fall of that same year- I signed up to take my first college semester (of course, being the first year of the pandemic it was all online). 


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