Diving into the World of Longevity and Health Span Research has Flipped My Perspective Multiple Times, Here Are My Top Three
I adore perspective shifts, and the world of longevity have provided me with some top-quality ones.
Perspective shifts occur when your existing beliefs are flipped around.
For this post, I’m setting aside new knowledge of cellular biology and the myriad interactions. Gene expression (epigenics) was brand new to me until recently, as was the NAD system, autophagy, and senescence.
The three flips in perspective I enjoyed most are ‘meta.’ They cover worldviews, not specifics.
Before you read them, pause for a moment to consider your own perspective shifts so far.
Longevity Perspective Shifts #1 – You Eat Carbs Because You Feel Hungry
My battles with sugar are well documented here.
However, this flip involves the direction of causation when it comes to carbs and hunger.
I believed I was eating simple carbs like bread*, potatoes and white rice because I was hungry. After a year of being low carb, I now know that I was hungry all day because I was eating simple carbs.
*a quick aside, celiac disease means I only eat fake bread (which is also simple carbs like rice flower, corn flower and maize).
A friend here at my co-working office expressed real shock that I only eat between 12pm and 6pm. She asked how could I not be starving hungry?
My reply of ‘I’m not hungry because I don’t eat many simple carbs’ did not compute with her. Back to the drawing board on my messaging.
Flipping the Health Span Perspectives #2 – Ageing and Frailty are Natural and Inevitable
Even after reading Lifespan for the first time, I still had the assumption that the best I could do is to freeze my current age.
After diving into DNA methylation tests, functional measures of ageing and understanding what triggers deterioration in cellular signalling, I found I was wrong.
The knowledge that I could age backwards hit me hard – in a positive way.
Sure, that damage that the crazy younger me did will not disappear. And it is not as if I can return to my 20’s or early 30’s.
Having a biological age 10 years younger than my chronological age was a wonderful perspective flip. It also helps with motivation to get stacking those longevity habits.
This is more nuanced than simply ageing backwards of course. I’ll happily take a reduction in my chances of chronic diseases and frailty while we wait for the science to catch up though.
Longevity Perspective Flip #3 – You Need to Become a Half-Starved Fitness Guru to Live a Healthy Life
After reading Sinclair’s Lifespan, I hit Google to find out more.
What I found was bickering scientists, half-starved fitness gurus, and snake oil salespeople.
Because of this, I backed off. It was another year before I returned, finding the gems among the clowns.
It’s natural enough, those half-starved fitness gurus are doggedly in-group. Step outside their tribe and you are the enemy, an idiot and worthy of only derision to their followers.
This is also a bad look for anyone genuinely interested in a less frail future.
Surprisingly, it turns out that you don’t need to be starved, take experimental drugs, or follow some convoluted regimen to live longer.
In fact, the first steps are simple.
This longevity perspective shift is what led to the Age Well Times.
Recent Blog Posts:
- The Day that Fear and Denial Almost Killed Me
- A Meeting with my Future Self
- Introduction to Longevity Ethics (in the Lifestyle section)