Once we overcame our diets, did a series of exercises, saunas and cold spells, doused ourselves with NMN and resveratrol and metformin and benign viruses, quit smoking and restricted our drinking and thought of it To wear seat belts, there is a major obstacle to a particularly long and healthy life: our guilt.
Whether hardwired or due to social expectations, we believe that old farts should not exceed their reception. Let some space for future generations, we murmur softly, out of earshot of older relatives. They are already using too much living space, so millennials can hardly buy houses anymore. You also want to make Social Security and Medicare bankrupt?
Just last month, Ezekiel Emanuel, chairman of the University of Pennsylvania's Medical Ethics Department (and Chief Architect of Obamacare), acknowledged that he stuck to his controversial paper of 201
Let's put aside the fact that it's a pretty weird metric to judge the value of a life – sorry, grandma, time to go, you do not do meaningful work, or write new books! Emanuel's argument ignores what biologists like Sinclair tell us, the older we are in good health, the more useful we become.
Sinclair ko could not be expected to contradict Emanuel. First, he says, we assume that all of us have died tomorrow for age-related reasons – and they will not, even under the most extreme anti-aging conditions. But if it does, that's just 100,000 additional people per day. (Approximately 150,000 people die each day, about two-thirds of them age-related.)
Compare that to the current growth rate in the world. Every 24 hours more than 350,000 babies arrive. The Earth's population is growing because of the size of the average family in the developing world, not because more people live longer. The main way to prevent this is to train more women and move more families to the cities – where, by the way, we should not blame Baby Boomers for the lack of housing. We just have to build more.
The total population should settle at around 11 billion people by the time their century begins, regardless of whether the ancestors continue to die or not. As for the threat of climate change, maybe the older generation will attract more attention if they actually live with the effects themselves. Or when they have to look their big-eared grubs in the eye and explain their inaction.
Second, a healthy longevity boom would put a huge strain on the healthcare system. Reducing just one major cause of death, such as heart disease, by 10 percent could save billions of dollars, money that can then be reinvested in medical research or simply returned to patients in the form of lower costs. And that's the whole point in treating aging as the ultimate disease that effectively breeds all others. (For example, writes Sinclair, smoking makes lung cancer five times more likely, but if you're only 20 to 70 years old, the likelihood that the disease will occur a thousand times, even if you've never had a cancer pin.)
" Aging is by far the biggest risk factor for a disease, on an order of magnitude, "says Sinclair. After volunteering with his wife in nursing homes, he knows what he's talking about. "Do not fool yourself: Getting old and getting sick does not make fun for you or your family, so I believe we are committed to keeping our health as long as possible."