The Longevity Project
Howard Friedman & Leslie Martin
Penguin, 2011 (2011)
Reviewed by Kelly Thunstrom
ountless studies have been done which end with the keys to a long life. We could probably all recite them in our sleep ... eat your fruit and vegetables, get a lot of exercise, get a lot of sleep. But is all of this really true? Drs. Friedman and Martin provide an in-depth and thorough analysis of the conceptions and
conceptions of a long-lasting life.
n the early 1900s, Dr. Terman pulled kids out of class to ask them some questions. He also had their parents and teachers answer the same questions about them (happiness level, sensitivity level, worry level, etc.). These children would be studied for the rest of their lives, making this the first study from childhood to death. How long did each of them live? What did they eventually die from? Most importantly, what were their most prevalent personality traits and behaviors, and did they, in some way, cause their inevitable death? How does a loving childhood and divorce fit into all of this? Drs. Friedman and Martin provide some shocks here, especially in the area of stress.
hile I enjoyed the general basis of the book, I found it dry and not as reader-friendly as I had hoped. Read this a few chapters at a time, take in the information, and then put it down for a while. Drs. Friedman and Martin should be commended for taking on and eventually finishing the Terman study.
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