This is an important new book that anyone with a serious interest in longevity should read, Breaking the Age Code: How your beliefs about aging determine how long and well you live, by Becca Levy, PhD. She is a Professor of Epidemiology at the Yale School of Public Health and a Professor of Psychology at Yale University. She has devoted her life to study of the psychology of aging. Modern Western culture is generally very negative about old age. We live in a society with rampant ageism. Professor Levy talks about the inherent bias, often unconscious bias, against seniors, and how these “wrong beliefs” and prejudices are internalized in everyone, including seniors. To instantly explore these prejudices, see her 60 second Image of Aging Quiz.
Among Professor Levy’s most important research findings is that age beliefs can extend, or shorten, your life span by eight years. That is a sixteen year swing. Research shows that attitude matters. If we wish to live long healthy lives, we need to free ourselves from negative thinking. If we can escape the ageism and prejudices of our society about old age, and instead have positive beliefs, we can extended our lives by eight years. All by just a shift in attitude and beliefs. All by escaping the lies and prejudices built into our modern youth worshiping culture.
In this book Becca Levy shows how to do this in a book written for the general public. You don’t have to have a PhD to understand it. Heck, even young people can probably follow it! By changing your mind set, and making the other changes we talk about here in Super Fit Seniors, including the fitness exercises, diet and community, you can meet our common goal of kick-ass 100. You can live a long, healthy, vital life and disprove all the negative stereotypes. The world needs the wisdom that only seniors can provide right now. You owe it to your family and society to stay fit while you age, hopefully even kick-ass super fit!