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Book Review :: Outlive by Peter Attia

Guest Post by Kevin Brown

In Outlive: The Science & Art of Longevity, unlike many books about longevity, Peter Attia’s goal isn’t to provide the reader with life hacks or technology that will help readers live until they’re one hundred and fifty. Instead, he lays out what he calls the Four Horsemen—“cardiovascular and cerebrovascular disease, cancer, Alzheimer’s disease and related neurodegenerative conditions, and type 2 diabetes and related metabolic dysfunction”—with a clear-eyed approach of just how awful they are, as well as what causes them, as far as we know.

He then explores tactics that can help readers try to stave off those Horsemen, though he argues that we should start decades, not just years, earlier to do so (Medicine 3.0, as opposed to the current healthcare system, which he calls Medicine 2.0). He delves into the research on exercise, nutrition, stability, and emotional health to show how they can all work to help prevent suffering and decline.

In fact, the most important part of his book is that he wants people to have a longer healthspan (the amount of time we’re healthy and functional), not just lifespan. He wants people to be able to live full lives in their seventies and eighties, not just live longer
Readers looking for a how-to manual might be disappointed, but Attia clearly explains the realities facing people as they age and gives them strategies and tactics for how to live a long and functional life.

Outlive: The Science & Art of Longevity by Peter Attia with Bill Gifford. Harmony Books, 2023.

Reviewer bio: Kevin Brown has published three books of poetry: Liturgical Calendar: Poems (Wipf and Stock); A Lexicon of Lost Words (winner of the Violet Reed Haas Prize for Poetry, Snake Nation Press); and Exit Lines (Plain View Press). He also has a memoir, Another Way: Finding Faith, Then Finding It Again, and a book of scholarship, They Love to Tell the Stories: Five Contemporary Novelists Take on the Gospels. Twitter @kevinbrownwrite

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