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A rousing call to rethink the aging process

Over a decade ago, a landmark ten-year study by the MacArthur Foundation shattered the stereotypes of aging as a process of slow, genetically determined decline. Researchers found that that 70 percent of physical aging, and about 50 percent of mental aging, is determined by lifestyle, the choices we make every day. That means that if we optimize our lifestyles, we can live longer and ''die shorter''--compress the decline period into the very end of a fulfilling, active old age.