Nearly everyone wants to live a long, happy and healthy life, but most people aren’t willing or able to develop the discipline necessary to achieve dynamic longevity. Dr. Frank Comstock has successfully addressed this elusive dilemma in his extremely well-written and researched book, Antiaging 101: Course Manual*. Offering page after page of sound science coupled with practical suggestions, this stellar book has the potential to finally compel John and Jane Q. Public to get up from the couch and throw away the donuts.
Writing a fairly complicated health book for the general public, in the style (loosely) of a college course, is a marvelous idea. At the end of every chapter there are entertaining and provocative questions and answers phrased as a precocious college student would ask. Comstock, like a typical college professor, is not shy about expressing his opinions on controversial subjects, such as a high-protein diet and the destructive side of distance running.
There are eight tangible health goals Antiaging 101* seeks to achieve: optimizing cell function and metabolism, while controlling insulin, glucose, cortisol, free radicals, hormones, and inflammation.
Though they sound intimidating, Comstock cleverly presents each goal with a short and readable introduction, then revisits them later as integral components of five lifestyle objectives.
A diet of high quality protein, fats, fruits, vegetables, and unprocessed foods is the first objective. Nutraceuticals are next, and Comstock cuts through the hype and myths about supplementation with refreshing honesty. His suggestions, from a balanced, high-quality multivitamin to pharmaceutical-grade omega-3s, are straightforward and practical.
Moderate exercise and reducing stress are obvious additions to the list of objectives, and they’re competently explored, with several surprising omissions. Nothing is said, for example, about practicing yoga or Pilates for improving flexibility and stress reduction. Also, the manifest benefits of a spiritual practice, herbal remedies, massage therapy, energy work and other bodywork modalities are not mentioned. Twenty years ago, leaving them out of a book like this would have been understandable, but from ayurveda to reiki, tens of millions of Americans are now exploring alternative medicines and health practices.
A passionate endorsement of bioidentical hormone replacement therapy rounds out the objectives, and this fascinating chapter is the highlight of the book. Comstock confronts and expertly discards every objection to the mainstream use of natural hormones for maintaining optimal health and vitality. The scientific and anecdotal evidence appear infallible, and one suspects the therapeutic and cosmetic use of natural estrogen, testosterone, human growth hormone, DHEA, and others will soon be commonplace.
Antiaging 101: Course Manua*l would make a wonderful gift for anyone over forty who wants to improve their health, stay youthful looking, lose weight, enhance sexual vitality, and otherwise thrive for decades to come. In fact, it could be a transformative gift for a parent or grandparent in their seventies or eighties.