The ABC of immortality by the author of the Nestarenie Service Dmitry Veremeenko

Published: 2024-02-26

Throughout all times and epochs, people have unsuccessfully attempted to unravel the secret of prolonging life. Titled individuals and their favorites have desired immortality, while great dictators and ordinary people have dreamed of eternal youth.

Is immortality attainable? The Global Technology reached out to Dmitry Veremeenko, Founder of a project studying therapies aimed at increasing human lifespan, Founder of the Nestarenie Camp life extension forum, and Co-author of the book “Bonus Years”.

— Dmitry, tell us about the motivations of someone who dedicates their entire life to studying immortality.

— It’s difficult for me to provide a single portrait of researchers studying such a question. Among them, there are philosophers who believe in futuristic concepts of personality and even in soul migration. Surely, among the researchers, there are those driven solely by curiosity. However, I prefer a scientific approach to the question of extending human life, which is based on the idea that humans are mortal, but it’s still possible to prolong their healthy period of life.

— You mentioned that humans are mortal. So, does immortality, as such, not exist at all?

— If we’re talking about a specific individual existing in a specific body, then no, immortality doesn’t exist. There are always certain risk factors that we cannot control, such as accidental death due to an overwhelming force. Humans are mortal beings, and bodies inevitably age. Even in the absence of aging, according to probability theory, the average expected lifespan of a human would be around 1000 years. Although this is a significant period, it’s not equivalent to immortality. The reason is that even young people are susceptible to death from cancer, cardiovascular diseases, and even common colds, albeit at a much lower frequency. But in the long term, over a 1000-year span, these factors lead to a significant level of mortality. Our task is to teach people to extend their active period of life in order to postpone the onset of old age as much as possible on all levels – both mental and physical. The word “immortality” exists, but such a concept does not exist in evidence-based medicine.

— Where does the concept of “immortality” come from and why do people actively use it?

— Its origins trace back to scientific fiction and truly immortal things. The works of classics are immortal, the creations of geniuses we use in everyday life are immortal, great stories passed down through generations are also immortal. And, notice, what I just listed was typically said or done by mortal individuals. “Those who cursed may be forgotten, but those who were cursed remember” — these are also immortal words of an immortal classic. When it comes to science, we talk about extending life, but not about immortality. At least not now.

— If we look at history, for example, at the beginning of the 20th century, we can conclude that in previous times there were many more long-livers. Have people lost the ability to live more than a hundred years over time?

– People lost the ability to write down the desired age in documents. Practically behind every story of an elder lies an incorrect record of the birth date. As soon as people around the world were obliged to register children with the civil registry offices immediately after their birth, the number of long-livers sharply decreased.

— Now, in times of insufficient quality of life for people, is it ethical to develop programs to extend life?

— What an interesting and right question! Times really change, and sometimes it’s truly difficult to think about the future; one needs to focus on what’s here and now. But I don’t see anything wrong with providing people with technology that allows them to stay in a healthy, active, productive period of life for as long as possible. What’s wrong if people change habits that shorten life to habits that extend it? We’re always talking about health anyway, and it has been and will be relevant in all times.

— Dmitry, let’s imagine a world where everyone, though not becoming immortal, lives much longer, say, up to two hundred years. What will this world be like? And will it be easy for people to integrate themselves into new living conditions commensurate with scientific and creative progress?

— It’s hard to imagine a person who, after birth, used a horse-drawn carriage for transportation and now, if desired, can engage in space tourism. Of course, living for several centuries at once is not easy. But we’re considering a case where the human brain finds it difficult to adapt to life changes due to insufficient neuroplasticity. We’re also studying neural connections in the brain’s cortex and their relation to aging issues. Even now, when we’ve transitioned from paper money to electronic and moved to online banking, some still use paper money. What’s the reason? Is it age or personal preferences? In the world, there will be many more healthy people who remain active at a time when statistically old age should already be setting in.

— Who benefits more from investing resources into life extension issues the state or private corporations?

— Private corporations benefit from sharing resources because there is a commercial interest in delaying aging. It’s also beneficial for the state. For instance, with certain decisions, it can rely on a person’s actual biological age. For example, if a person’s retirement age was 65, at 65 their biological age could be younger or older. And, one would like to believe that healthy people will always be beneficial to everyone.

— Dmitry, let’s give our readers the technology for life extension. What should they do, what should they not do, or what does this technology entail?

— The system that will help extend the years of your life, prevent and slow down the progression of age-related diseases, is in the final stages of development. But I can already say that the main goal of the IT system is to provide information about methods for extending life expectancy based on an individual approach, analyzing users’ medical data and lifestyle.

And as for a general recommendation for extending life, I’ll leave it as follows — don’t shorten your own life! Immortality doesn’t exist! Stop deceiving yourself! Stop visiting dubious websites and consuming “anti-aging” products that haven’t undergone any clinical trials and aren’t even medicinal products in essence. Consult only with specialists. Stop reading authors who claim that to extend your life, you need to stop eating fried chicken. Stop believing in studies of products and methods that have been tested on animals. Take care of your cardiovascular system, as it plays a crucial role in extending your life. Pay attention to what your doctor prescribes.

And, of course, take care of yourself!

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