Excerpt: "You: Staying Young"

Dr. Mehmet Oz, who is known to millions as Oprah's go-to guy on all things medical, has a new book aimed at keeping you younger, longer.

"You: Staying Young: The Owner's Manual for Extending Your Warranty" is the latest installment in his and Dr. Michael Roizen's "You" book series. It tackles the dreaded topic of aging and how to keep your body from turning on you.

While aging seems to just creep upon us, Oz and Roizen say it actually begins occurring early and there are things you can do you prevent it.

Read and excerpt of the book below.

To find out more about "YOU: Staying Young" on the Discovery Health channel, and more on how Dr. Oz helped Frank Ficello and Elaine Barrett turn around their lifestyles and get healthy visit www.discoveryhealth.com.

Introduction

Most of us think aging happens like this: We go on our way, living happily through life, until one day we start to feel old, and the symptoms domino right before our cataract-clouded eyes. Our bones creak, our backs hurt, we space on the names of our neighbors, we hate driving at night, we can't play golf anymore, we can't hear what our spouses are saying, and our sex lives pretty much come down to brushing up against the washing machine. Soon we're eating dinner at three-thirty and our primary goal of the day is staying up long enough to catch Wheel of Fortune.

To us, that approach means you're drowning in life?not bathing in the beauty of it. We're here to challenge that perception of aging and create a new way of thinking about "antiaging medicine." The traditional focus of the medical community has been on treating chronic diseases and reversing acute illnesses associated with aging?cancer, heart disease, stroke. The assumption was clear: Since heart disease and cancer alone account for over 50 percent of all deaths, you could live maybe 50 percent longer if you could avoid the big killers. As it turns out, this isn't what would happen. As devastating as these diseases are, wiping them out as your killer increases your average life expectancy by only about nine and a half years?not the thirty to forty years that you would expect. Why? Because something else takes their place.

To add serious years to your life -- and life to your years -- you have to lower your risk for all diseases. And the only way to do that is to slow your rate of aging on the cellular level. Curing cancer or any other disease does not necessarily do anything to change the nature or speed of your bodily aging process. That's because aging and disease?although they interact with each other -- aren't the same thing. As we grow older, all of our systems slowly deteriorate, which makes us more vulnerable to disease. By slowing the aging of our cells while simultaneously preventing disease, we can enjoy not only a higher quality of life but a much longer one as well. This is where we're taking YOU.

Of course, the reason why aging is so intimidating isn't because it appears to sneak up on you like a first-rate mugger. In reality, aging is more like a savvy bank robber who's spent months casing the joint. Why the discrepancy? Because there are huge delays between the cause of the problem and the effects you actually see in your life. And that means you have to start building defenses in your thirties, forties, and fifties against attacks that may not occur until your sixties, seventies, and eighties.

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