Life Extension Update

July 18, 2008 at 3:08 pm | Posted in Medical, Personal | Leave a comment

As some of you may know, my long term goal in life is to not die. It’s a very long term goal. Even though achieving immortality still sounds like science fiction, it becomes more science and less fiction every year. At this point, nobody that I know of is promising an escape from aging, but there are techniques that may slow down an individual’s aging to the point where the progress of anti-aging technology catches up and surpasses it.

Before I go any further let my say that I welcome responses to this post, but I’m not particularly interested in discussing the ethics or morality of immortality and you are unlikely to sway me with any argument that it is better to biologically age after all. And also, if you’ll forgive my bluntness, if you suggest that I will be bored during my extended life span I will think of you as being very short sighted.

So …. one rather unsurprising strategy for life extension is to be as healthy as possible for as long as possible. Towards that end, I have adopted a caloric restricted diet. I have been practicing it for about three months now.

For breakfast, I eat fruit. My lunch is raw vegetables and hazelnuts. My usual dinner is lightly fried tofu and mushrooms with coleslaw and cherry tomatoes. I sometimes substitute in other meals such as vegetarian meatballs or chicken breasts. Don’t worry about my protein intake. I get plenty.

I am not a vegetarian, but I have sworn off livestock, dairy, and eggs; not so much for health reasons but because of the environmental aspect of the livestock industry. I still eat fish and would eat game if somebody offered me some.

My diet is not easy for me, although the difficulty isn’t what you might expect. I don’t really have much trouble resisting offers of sweets or steaks. The challenge comes from not wanting to eat all of my regular meals. Once I start eating I am satisfied with them, but before I start eating I often put off eating until I am quite hungry. When I am quite hungry I crave fattier foods. I eat too many peanut butter sandwiches.

I am currently taking resveratrol, which hypothetically may mimic the effects of caloric restriction.

I am also trying to be more active, with limited success. I am still rollerblading and I now attend an aikido class once a week. My yoga practice has stalled. I hope to start yoga again soon.

I have put quite a lot of work into improving my mental health as well. I am taking medication to combat dystimea, I am reading books about Buddhism and anger management, and I also do some meditation. There have been remarkable changes to my thoughts and feelings over the past few months.

Signing up for cryogenic storage is on my list of medium term goals. I must admit that I have been a bit lax about this. My excuse is that I am waiting for my financial situation to stabilize. The last bit of research that I did on the subject was encouraging. You don’t have to be a millionaire. You can fund you storage by making the cryogenic company a beneficiary of a life insurance policy.

Of course medical technology continues to advance. I am frustrated that all I can really do in that area is to sit back and wait. A while back I was excited to find a facebook group called the Vancouver Immortalists Association. I thought that perhaps I could make some contacts and find out how to be in the right place at the right time to take advantage of new technological developments. Unfortunately, nothing ever happened with that group. My search for new information and opportunities has stalled.

Perhaps you can tell that a large challenge in progressing towards this goal is keeping the momentum up. This is really the first time in a month that I’ve thought about it for more than five minutes.

So, that’s where I’m at in terms of living forever. I’ve made some good progress towards improving my chances of becoming immortal, but also have a long way to go. I think that right now, the best thing that I can do towards increasing my chances further is stabilize my life in terms of money, scheduling, and my living situation.

Live long and prosper.

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