According to scientists, any one of us homo sapiens living today could be the next to live to the ripe age of 200. Does this prediction excite you or scare you?
Scientist Dr Aubrey De Greyand futurist inventor Ray Kurzweil both hypothesise about the new potential of human longevity. Therapies that undo and repair the molecular and cellular changes of aging are currently being developed. Artificial intelligence abounds and efforts to defy nature in order to create a purely man-made, robotics driven future is at the helm of our existence. Stem cell and tissue engineering technology treatments focus on reversing the things the body has done to itself rather than correcting the effects of infections and diseases contracted externally.
We may no longer need to worry about living naturally and steering away from chemical and free radical damage from products consumed, and over exposure to polluted environments. Staying healthy by living naturally, exercising and eating predominantly healthy foods doesn’t come up in these future centric conversations between scientists. Perhaps there won’t be a need to spend time designing our lives around what may become ‘old school’ methods of healthy habits for preserving longevity. Advancements in food technology could mean that we’ll have the option to nourish ourselves intravenously, meaning less excuses to meet over meals socially. Bookings for meet ups at intravenous therapy ‘bars’ are already becoming a trend - infusing vitamins, minerals and antioxidants directly into the bloodstream no longer means a visit to the hospital. The new restaurants might serve us pellets that stimulate the brain and senses in a way that make it seem as though we are consuming a gourmet meal, while still infusing our cells with nutrition.
In relation to other healthy habits, there could be the potential to create a lazy society who don’t feel they need to go to the gym if the answer to beating diseases like obesity means simply reversing what the body has done to itself on a cellular level, through medical advancements.
The upside is that there may be less impact on natural resources if we can find man made replacements for them. But it would take years of test group analysis to figure out what effects these modern technologies could have on both the human body and the planet.
With an increased life expectancy comes an overlap in generations meaning our social interactions with family members will change dramatically. We might get to meet our great grandparents and the opportunity to receive more detailed information regarding our family histories. Families will be even bigger - what impact could this have on our relationships with loved ones?
Cosmetic and anti-aging beauty solutions, together with biological advancements, might mean the average 30 year old could be attracted to a 70 year old. As a couple they would continue to lead an active lifestyle together for another 50 years, shifting societal behaviour patterns and family dynamics even further from what they are today.
We say keep an eye on these medical and technological advancements but don’t forget to be where you are right now, enjoying all that both nature, man-made inventions and human connection have to offer, because at the end of the day, longevity isn’t the same as immortality.
Date Published: 31 May 2019
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