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Eternity Soup: Inside the Quest to End Aging Hardcover – January 26, 2010
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From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. Bringing his signature wit and insight to the field of biogerentology, Critser (Fat Land, Generation Rx) produces a vigorous report of frontier science, charlatanry, and hope for a new, much longer, way of life. Beginning with a discussion with his septuagenarian parents, who receive "compounded hormone" treatment from a "longevity doctor," Critser travels the U.S. to investigate the enterprises "forging onward into a brave new pro-longevist world." (Crister's own horse in the race-besides finding the natural aging process "cruel, capricious and unrelenting"-is a "form of accelerated brain aging" he suffers as a result of a concussion.) Crister's first stop is a gathering of the Caloric Restriction Society, which advocates minimal caloric intake as a way of slowing cell damage; a conference breakfast consists of five blueberries and three potato chips. More trendy, and pricey, is hormone treatment, which claims to "add thirty years to maximum life span," backed up by promising trials on mice (though more recent studies have called the science into question). Critser's own course of treatment turns out ambiguously, but sends him to an intriguing third line of research, bio-engineering replacement body parts and other tissues from a patient's own cells. A light and critical eye makes this excursion into front-end science an entertaining, enlightening trek.
“A lively look at the world of gerontology from the veteran medical reporter who lives in Pasadena.”
—Los Angeles Magazine
“Critser shoots straight from the hip about the antiaging industry with a grounded knowledge of the current science, informed insight and a soupcon of sharp-edged humor.”
“Yes, the subject is of personal interest. Yes, the information is presented by someone with a lot of common sense and a healthy sense of humor. Yes, there are unforgettable characters in the book and yes, the author has made it a delight to read. Long live Greg Critser -- provided he keeps writing. Otherwise, an average lifespan should suffice.”
—Mark Salzman, author of Iron and Silk, The Soloist, and True Notebooks
"Whenever Greg Critser tackles a topic, he writes the definitive book on the subject. He's done it again with aging. This is his most profound and entertaining book yet."
—Michael Balter, senior writer, Science Magazine
“Greg Critser has a unique understanding of biogerontology in the social, political, and business climate of today’s science. Besides insightfully covering the frontiers of longevity with due diligence to scientific details, the Soup is spiced by anecdotes with the leading researchers. I also admired the clear discussion of the complexities of human aging in the real world outside of the ivory tower of laboratory animal models.”
—Caleb E. Finch, Ph.D., ARCO-Kieschnick Professor of Gerontology, Adj. Professor of Anthropology, Molecular Biology, Neurobiology, and Psychology, Percy Andrus Gerontology Center
“Greg Critser's Eternity Soup takes the reader on a fantastic journey through the world of anti-aging medicine and science. The scientists and physicians he vividly portrays are trying to enable us to live longer, in good shape, and stave off cancer and other diseases associated with aging. His explanations of what they are doing and thinking are lively and as good as you can get.”
—Robert H. Binstock, Professor of Aging, Health, and Society, School of Medicine, Case Western Reserve University, and former President of the Gerontological Society of America
Top Customer Reviews
At the end of one of his chapters, while pointing out how quirky (sic) Aubry de Grey might seem to a bunch of British fellows, he quotes someone as saying "those baby-boomers should just accept limits". If we indeed accept limits, we would still be hunter gatherers, many of us dying from infectious disease around a paleolithic firelight. Could you imagine suggesting to someone 100 years ago that you would be able to whip out a small piece of plastic from your pocket and talk to someone with it living 3000 miles away? WE SHOULD NEVER ACCEPT LIMITS (and in fact history has proven that we don't).Read more ›
And, oh yeah, one more thing: the book pretty much starts with an italian, and it ends with an italian. There's just something fundamentally right about that. A cent'ann' figlioli!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I will begin by giving you 10 reasons not to read my review of ETERNITY SOUP, by excellent science writer Greg Critser.
No, on second thought, I will not. Read more
I am a scientist working in the biotech industry. This book, written by a talented journalist, gives a lot of technical information from a neutral stand. I like it.Published on December 14, 2010 by Jian Bao
I really enjoy Greg Critser's work and I am also someone who has practiced `longevity medicine' in its mildest form for many years. Read morePublished on August 31, 2010 by Jane D
I recommend this book to those of us who see our society as obsessed with the aging. Greg was beyond thorough in his research giving us a full accounting of some segments of our... Read morePublished on August 25, 2010 by Nancy LoDolce
The scientific field of aging has experienced an explosion of knowledge that many people are unaware of. Read morePublished on August 25, 2010 by Davensandra
A warning to review readers: Put your cursor over the reviewers names. You will note almost all of the 5 star reviewers have only reviewed this book. Read morePublished on August 20, 2010 by Bruce Waugh
Greg Critser's review of the current status of the anti-aging medicine in Eternity Soup is outstanding. Read morePublished on August 14, 2010 by Arlan Richardson
Greg Critser has to be one of the best reporters and writers on medical issues around: he knows how to explain the science, bring characters to life, and engage readers in riveting... Read morePublished on August 14, 2010 by KC Cole
Critser's follow up to "Generation Rx: How Prescription Drugs Are Altering American Lives, Minds, and Bodies" is a terrific look at an industry that keeps growing in America, and... Read morePublished on August 12, 2010 by Paul Harris