Explains the physiological realities of aging and describes how they are compounded by ageism in the United States, affecting one's pride and self-worth, and guides readers to take positive steps for retaining health, dignity, and vitality through their later years.
The Rolling Stones (now in their 60s) have sung to us for years about what a drag it is getting old, but it doesn't have to be that way. Despite living in a youth-oriented society, many of the aged patients seen by Dr. Levine have kept their emotional zest, intellectual zeal, and empowering dignity. Levine points out well-known public figures who are clearly aging with dignity and vitality. The neurologist author shows steps we can take to age while retaining these qualities, defying a society that challenges this quest. Living longer is not enough for most of us: we don't want to just survive. The quality of our life as we age is most important, and much of that depends on our attitudes and approach. The text includes strategies to optimize self-esteem as well as health, including attention to nurtrition, exercise, health care, education and mind stimulation, sexuality, social activities, and cosmetics and cosmetic surgery.
Readers are shown the physiological facts of aging, from cellular to systemic changes. The most common diseases in old age are described, and actions are suggested to avoid many of the diseases. Levine also explores how the disorders change abilities and self-perception.