Kevin Dewalt is an American technology professional, presently working at a VC. Kevin is a strong life extension supporter. We’ve met online at Baris Karadogan’s blog. I specially liked his “happy argument” for maximum life extension on the psychological level, see answer 3.
1. What is the story of your life extension commitment?
When I was 23 I discovered a book called “Optimum Sports Nutrition” by Dr. Michael Colgan. In it he presents arguments for lifestyle and nutrition changes that athletes could make to improve performance. The idea that changing my exercise, eating, or lifestyle habits could change my physical well being, health and longevity thrilled me and I began my quest. I began researching and learning about dietary supplements. At age 25 I became a vegetarian. At 26 I joined the Life Extension Foundation and have followed their recommended supplement scheme since. At 33 I began started a mild Calorie Restrition diet, lost 10 pounds and have remained on the diet. At that time I also began following the writing of Aubrey de Grey (blogterview here), Roy Walford, and others and realized that the only way I was going to be Father Time forever would be through significant advances in science.
2. Is it a commitment for moderate or maximum life extension?
If you ask most healthy people on the planet this question, regardless of age, they will probably answer with “moderate” life extension. Ask these same people if they are ready to die tomorrow. The end comes too soon for everyone, and therefore the only logical answer is “maximum”. I want to live forever.
3. What is your favourite argument supporting human life extension?
As my wife puts it, I was born with the “happy gene”. I am the happiest person I have ever met. If the rest of you felt the way I do and couldn’t wait to get out of bed in the morning, you would want to live forever as well.
This level of happiness has persisted within me even as I underwent traumatic life situations that seem to land other people in years of therapy. My only conclusion is that my happiness is the result of genes/chemistry. Science will eventually figure out what it is and other people will have the option of feeling like I do. When you have this option, by all means take it. Trust me, you’ll want to live forever as well.
Some folks say that life is just a veil of tears Not me man I can't pack enough into these years --Crash Test Dummies, Here on Earth
4. What kind of moderate life extension technologies have the chance to become successful, and when?
I’m a layman, so you’re probably asking the wrong guy. But from what I’ve read Calorie Restriction with Optimal Nutrition (CRON) is the best option currently available for most of us. What is bizarre is that people who no nothing about it or who have never tried it decry it as an austere lifestyle. Mild CRON is at best a minor inconvenience.
5. What is the most probable technological draft of maximum life extension, which technology or discipline has the biggest chance to reach it earliest? When?
I haven’t the slightest idea.
6. What can blogs and other websites do for LE?
Tons. Bring together people who think like we do. Make “anti-aging” a credible topic of discussion instead of one about face creams and snake oil potions as the public normally sees.
7. What can/will You do for life extension?
I think my biggest contribution will be to provide an example of a regular non-scientist guy who embraces the goals of life-extension and who follows a lifestyle that gives him the best chance of living forever while still having healthy personal relationships, a decent golf game, and a successful career. Beyond that I plan to join the mprize 300 this year.