The message of the founder of the tourist service "Ostrovok" Sergei Fage about how he is trying to increase his longevity and increase his productivity, using, including methods with unconfirmed clinical effectiveness, caused a flurry of indignation on the part of supporters of evidence-based medicine. However, this topic has another side - how to take care of one's health, to live a long and happy life.
Sergei Fage's report that he spent $ 200,000 on drugs that seem to extend his life, provoked in the social networks fights of supporters and opponents of this approach, and the creator and president of the Foundation for the Support of Scientific Research "The Science for Life Extension" tried with a scientific point of view to understand how much the medications taken by Fage will help. But it's not just a case, there are enough ways to take care of your longevity.
First let's look at the numbers. In Russia, which, by the way, is 110th in life expectancy according to WHO statistics (after the DPRK and Bolivia), live 13 years less than in the leading countries (Japan, Switzerland and Germany), Russian men also live on 12 years less than women.
The main success of the leading countries is not only the volume of health care costs, but the high degree of personal responsibility of people for their health and the focus of government programs on disease prevention.
For example, an average Japanese doctor visits the doctor 15 times a year, at 40 years passes a mandatory and free examination of all the basic functions of the body and an analysis of the prerequisites for the occurrence of cancer and other diseases. In Germany, medical insurance includes almost annual surveys, for example, women are taught to monitor the risk of breast cancer from 30 years of age. Switzerland has the maximum coverage in the world of voluntary health insurance. The Swiss are leaders in terms of personal responsibility for their health, and are better than others with the prescriptions of doctors.
First a bit of theory. Most of the skeptics who attacked Sergei Fage, argue their position by saying that "they are 50, and they know the doctor only on injuries." This is, of course, a well-known position to all, but we should not forget that the average age of detection of cancer in Russia in women is 64 years (the cancer of the neck of a T-shirt is 52 years), the average age of diagnosis of type 2 diabetes is 51 years. At the same time, 9.6% of Russians suffer from diabetes mellitus in Russia. Cumulative risk (the percentage of newborns that die or develop cancer before reaching 75 years of age) in Russia - 13.69%. This is the highest figure in the world. If simplified: the mortality from cancer, cardiovascular diseases and diabetes grows about 10 times for every decade after 30 years. This means that all those who happily discuss the lack of a need for a doctor visit are likely to have a tendency to develop these diseases, but do nothing to detect these trends.
Both diabetes and cancer are now called "diseases of aging". Many studies of aging itself are considered a disease and reveal daily a lot of factors that either accompany or condition it. So numerous studies show that cancer is preceded by a multi-year latent inflammation, which is easily revealed by analyzes that almost no one does, and diabetes - insulin resistance. But the early signals of the body in Russia are largely ignored.
Another argument, which the opponents of "eat tablets with handfuls", is that their heredity is strong as a rock. Yes, perhaps their mothers, grandmothers, grandfathers have lived a long and happy life, but there is one big "but".
Until the middle of the twentieth century, the main mission to ensure the maximum life expectancy of humans was borne out by evolving, weeding out weak organisms in infancy and childhood by mass epidemics. The strongest survived. The average life expectancy fell from this, which was about 35 years before the beginning of the 19th century, but the maximum life expectancy from that moment grew insignificantly (by 10 to 20 years). In other words, viruses and bacteria killed weak organisms that were deprived of the chance to become great musicians, scientists, and simply good people.
The achievements of medicine of the last century removed this mechanism, infant and infant mortality fell, but this led to the fact that the genetics of modern man, that is, the body's ability to cope with stress and aging, became worse in the population. In other words, the population began to evolve, rather, socially, rather than biologically. The deterioration of the gene pool is countered by the improvement of medicine.
Another important point is that a modern urban resident (and in Russia an urbanized society) does not breathe air at all 50-70 years ago, walks 5-10 times less and has much less routine daily exercise. Therefore, all the numerous studies confirming the direct influence of regular moderate physical activity on longevity is simply a recognition of the fact that it is vitally important for a person to get out of the mass and harmful hypodynamia to the level of the average for his kind of physical exertion.
In the end, even if you can boast of a good genome, this does not mean that you will live as long as your ancestors without making an effort. In a country where the population believes that "they have to provide health to the state" (which, incidentally, is spelled out in the Constitution), this is sad news: the state takes few steps to prevent aging. Therefore, it's only your personal business, seriously you will react to the prevention of aging or you will have fun reporting on social networks how successfully you avoided the doctor.
Now let's move from theory to strategy. As a rule, many people think about old age for about 50 years. At this age, everyone starts to dream of a magic pill that will push away old age. However, such a panacea, most likely, not and never will be. Too complex is the human body, too many systems and mechanisms in it that are beginning to age, and the discord between them intensifies aging.
At the cellular level, the aging of cells leads to a decrease in their sensitivity to the base molecules (for example, insulin). Removal of old cells from the body occurs more slowly with time, they accumulate, provoking a latent inflammation of the organs. Fundamental systems of the body change with age, and all this is linked to changes in the psyche, cognitive functions and behavior. Even a super effective medicine can fix only one mechanism, but it will not keep the aging of the rest. Aging is the most complex and diverse disease of the body, it requires full respect for itself.
Recently, a lot of scientifically proven facts of influence on the average and maximum life expectancy of these or other drugs and methods have appeared. The revolution in this area is going on before our eyes. Literally weekly there are new studies that bring new facts. The breakthrough is made both by new methods and by the completion of long-term population studies on dozens and hundreds of people who started long ago.
All this leads to an explosive flow of information. More than 600 thousand articles on medicine are published annually. In each article, examples, models and statistics. Many articles contain revolutionary results. However, it is impossible to physically even view all relevant articles, except perhaps the brightest in the most authoritative publications or within the framework of a narrow topic. And aging is a broad topic.
Now, when any doctor with any regalia starts talking about aging, if he does not start with a disclaimer about limiting his idea of the subject, then, unfortunately, he deceives you. After all, it is physically impossible to keep all the variety of topics. Therefore, the modern struggle against old age begins to form completely different forms of organization of medicine.
Firstly, the problem of aging began to be taken seriously. Secondly, the first data are accumulated, which confidently connect these or other factors with aging. Scientifically, the greatest misconception about "fatty food", which allegedly provokes the growth of cholesterol, was routed. In fact, the true "provoker" of negative metabolic processes is sugar and other "fast" carbohydrates. Effective diets, methods and intensity of sports activities (regular moderate load) and so on are revealed.
Third, scientific research has begun to bring concrete breakthroughs in relation to certain preparations, minerals and vitamins. For example, the drug metformin, which is used for diabetics, showed a lot of geroprotective properties, this drug prevents cancer and other diseases. This was revealed in the analysis of the average life expectancy of diabetics taking metformin: it was higher than in the control group of "healthy". However, this does not mean that it's time to include everyone in the daily diet.
Fourthly, there are doctors who are beginning to carefully study all materials and apply certain approaches and methods.
Initially, this area concerned very narrow applications for the sharp increase in individual abilities (the first story, for example, was about "night vision"). However, at the present time it is interpreted broadly as a way to withstand the "biologically programmed" aging and the strengthening of cognitive and other functions at any age. The attitude towards this direction is contradictory: from enthusiasm to categorical rejection.
Why is biohacking? Many now regard aging as a programmed process. Like wear and tear in a car, to stimulate sales. According to this version, the human body is needed only for reproductive functions, and therefore, by fulfilling them, it is destroyed. But even those who believe that the program does not, agree that the programs of self-maintenance of health and efficiency in the human body are active only in the reproductive age, and after 30 years begin to weaken. A healthy person, after an active reproductive phase, needs society, not nature, and therefore the health issues are not his body, but the person himself - this is the "hacking" of the natural state of affairs.
Tips for a long life
If we analyze the most investigated questions of longevity, then we can single out several topics. But remember that these are only tips based on personal experience, perhaps you have personal characteristics, so the actions of the medical plan need to be coordinated with the doctor.
- Fight with old age you need in advance - in 30 years, when the body switches from growth to aging. At this moment, the first systemic changes occur, which gain strength by 40 - 50 - 60. At this time, at least you need to learn how to regulate sleep and exercise. To sleep it is necessary not less than 7-8 hours, it is necessary to be engaged in sports not less than 2 times a week. Quite simply.
At this time, or better even earlier, you need to radically part with the sugar and learn how to regulate the intake of carbohydrates (it is desirable to reduce their number, especially fast, such as, for example, contained in French fries).
In this period, you need to make the first check-up on vitamins and miners - at this age, their deficit is not critical yet, but it is already leading to systemic shifts. However, vitamin supplements are better coordinated with the doctor, since there is individual sensitivity and intolerance.
In the modern population, an allergy to gluten is growing. However, in Russia it is not really possible to diagnose this problem, more precisely, they do not think about this problem. And the consequences are often very diverse, it is impossible to say whether there is a simple symptom. However, since gluten-containing foods (for example, all of wheat) have the highest glycemic index at the same time, it is useful for everyone to simply reduce the share of wheat in the diet. There is another reason: over the past 50 years, the amount of gluten in wheat, thanks to breeding, has increased. Therefore, in the diet of a modern man the dose of this unsafe protein is exceeded tremendously.
The hardest part is to part with sugar. Without it, the organism rebels, the person experiences almost breaking. But like any habit - it's difficult only the first month, but it's worth it. A complete rejection of sugar leads to the most rapid results in the form of an improvement in the state. Therefore, giving up sugar is a "first step". If this step is taken, then everything else will turn out. And the result is so obvious that other steps are easier to make.
2. A key indicator of the approaching aging is sleep and mood. Insomnia, anxiety, lack of vivacity in the morning, fatigue, weakening of concentration, irritability - all these are signs of system failures. And in no case need to compensate these problems with psychostimulants and other drugs. And even more so (as is often the case in Russia) - pour problems with alcohol. The fact is that these tendencies, as a rule, are a consequence of problems in fundamental systems - immune, endocrine and inability to relieve stress.
Here it is important to make a reservation - the body is damaged by stress. But a healthy body can overcome stress. So, the problem is either that the body starts to systematically give up, and the stresses begin to "pierce" the defense, or you have too many stresses and you can not block them and hold a stroke, and these stresses begin to systematically undermine your body.
Therefore, in 30 (and preferably earlier) you need to learn to work with your psyche. Meditation, simple tricks of calming the nerves, courses and books on a good way of understanding the world. In general, it's time to get used to the fact that everything in life is not at all random, and your excellent mood and good communication with people is your responsibility for your health.
At the moment when you enter into a tailspin (insomnia, irritability, conflicts with others) do two things. Do a complete analysis of the body (mainly on hormonal failures) and go to a therapist. Learn to overcome these emotional storms.
3. After 40 years, direct effects of early aging factors begin to form. In particular, sleep deteriorates, insulin resistance occurs and the hormonal background changes more strongly. These processes are slower, if you started at 30, but then start the unit. Therefore, it's time to undergo a complete examination and go to controlled diets. However, there are two reservations. First, "hard diet" associated with severe hunger, as a rule, counterproductive. A moderate and controlled reduction in caloric intake is required. Secondly, do not pursue fashion, it is better to consult a doctor and choose the diet that suits you.
We recommend to read the book of the Russian gerontologist Alexei Moskalev "The Long-Liver".
4. There are promising results for geroprotective medicines, but so far we can not advise these medications. In any case, use these medications should be under the supervision of a doctor.
Since the age of 40, annual prophylaxis and analysis of the main system markers is mandatory. It is difficult to sound an exact nomenclature, for example, you can take the list of Mikhail Batin and his group Open Longevity, but at least you should control thyroid hormones, testosterone / estrogen and blood sugar level, cholesterol level, C-reactive protein and glucose tolerance level. If any indicator is out of the norm, we should discuss with the doctor what to do. In most cases, nutritional supplements and vitamins will help. But not poly / multivitamin complexes on the advice of a pharmacist from a pharmacy, but specific minerals / vitamins, the deficiency of which is diagnosed.
Is it worth $ 200 thousand, which was spent by the founder of the "Island"? Of course not. But you have to spend money. However, it's up to you whether this is a good price for a healthy life.
A few words in conclusion
"Diets" of biohackers are often advised to use psycho-stimulating substances. Immediately stipulate that we do not support this, since the tide of vigor from the above points is enough. The rest - only if the doctor prescribes for specific indications.
And the second point: fashionable sport of overcoming (marathon, triathlon), alas, can also be attributed to the formation of dependence on neurotransmitters rather than to reasonable efforts to maintain life expectancy. Just think, why in the known myth a young warrior ran 42 kilometers and died, and a modern office clerk after 3 years of training - no. After 30 - 40 years, any stimulation of growth in the body enhances the processes that lead to the accumulation of errors in the body. Current research shows that, after 40 years, insulin-like growth factor should be restrained, not boosted, so moderate exercise is a pleasure - what the doctor prescribed, and grueling sports does not.
And how it became fashionable to say: you hang out there, good health and mood to you.