Quest for Longevity: How a 45-year-old American tech entrepreneur 'reversed' his age

Bryan Johnson, a US-based ultra-rich software mogul, is spending millions to reverse his age. By following a stringent regime that includes hourlong workouts, he has reportedly been able to reduce his biological age by at least five years

FP Explainers January 30, 2023 14:04:05 IST
Quest for Longevity: How a 45-year-old American tech entrepreneur 'reversed' his age

Bryan Johnson has reportedly been able to reduce his age by five years. Image Courtesy: Blueprint website

While it is not uncommon for tech giants to be fascinated with anti-ageing research, one uberwealthy software entrepreneur stands apart.

45-year-old Bryan Johnson has reportedly been able to achieve age reversal and has turned back the clock on his biological age by at least five years.

Who is Bryan Johnson and what is he doing to become young? Let’s take a closer look.

Who is Bryan Johnson?

Based in Venice, California, Johnson sold Braintree Payment Solutions LLC, a payment processing firm, to EBay Inc in 2013 for $800 million, as per a Bloomberg report.

He told Bloomberg that though the company was a “massive success”, the long hours left him overweight and mentally exhausted.

Johnson then went on to find OS Fund, a biotech venture firm. In 2016, he launched Kernel, a startup that makes helmets to analyse brain activity to study the organ’s workings.

Bryan Johnson’s strict regime

To attain his aim of having the brain, heart, lungs, and other organs including the penis and rectum of an 18-year-old, Johnson has hired a team of 30 doctors and health experts who keep a check on his every bodily function, says Bloomberg.

The team led by Oliver Zolman, a 29-year-old “regenerative medicine physician”, has pledged to back-pedal ageing in all of the entrepreneur’s organs, in what they call ‘Project Blueprint’, says Bloomberg.

For this, Johnson follows a stringent regime every day.

At five in the morning, the Kernel founder takes two dozen medicines and supplements for various parts of his body.

He works out daily for an hour which consists of 25 different exercises.

Quest for Longevity How a 45yearold American tech entrepreneur reversed his age

Bryan Johnson adheres to a strict regimen every day. Image Courtesy: Blueprint website

His diet must have 1,977 vegan calories a day, and he sleeps at the same time every night after “two hours wearing glasses that block blue light”, according to the Bloomberg report.

Johnson regularly monitors his vital signs and each month he has to undergo a variety of tests – some of which are painful and invasive.

He has also taken injections to create “fat scaffolding” in his face, a procedure to build “genuine, young-person fat cells”, says the report.

“I treat athletes and Hollywood celebrities, and no one is pushing the envelope as much as Bryan,” Jeff Toll, an internist who is a part of Project Blueprint, told Bloomberg.

This year alone, Johnson will be spending at least $2 million to pursue his fountain of youth dream.

ALSO READ: Will humans be able to grow young again after study makes reverse ageing possible in mice?

What success has Johnson achieved so far

According to Bloomberg, Johnson is much healthier than others his age. His body fat ranges between five and six per cent.

His doctors claim Johnson has the heart of a 37-year-old, the skin of a 28-year-old and the lung capacity and fitness of an 18-year-old, the report stated.

The doctors also say that he has gum inflammation of someone aged 17.

Johnson wrote on his website that Blueprint has slowed the pace of his ageing by 24 per cent.

Zolman, a medical graduate from King’s College London, said his work with the businessman has just started and they have a tonne of procedures left, including gene therapies.

“We have not achieved any remarkable results,” he told Bloomberg. “In Bryan, we have achieved small, reasonable results, and it’s to be expected.”

Zolman said his goal is to “prove through biostatistics a reduction of ageing of 25 per cent across all 78 organs by 2030”.

Speaking to Bloomberg, Johnson said, “What I do may sound extreme, but I’m trying to prove that self-harm and decay are not inevitable”.

The Silicon Valley tech mogul has also launched Rejuvenation Olympics, a website that encourages people to join him.

The site asks users to upload “your epigenetic data to the platform and your results will be analysed and included on the leaderboard.”

“If you say that you want to live forever or defeat ageing, that’s bad —it’s a rich person thing,” Johnson told Bloomberg. “If it’s more akin to a professional sport, it’s entertainment. It has the virtues of establishing standards and protocols. It benefits everyone in a systemic way.”

ALSO READ: Turn back time? Study hints at cause, possible solution to halt decline due to ageing, Alzheimer’s

Reaction to Johnson’s quest

Since reports about his extreme measures made headlines, Johnson has received a lot of criticism online.

Taking to Twitter, the wealthy businessman shared a bunch of responses critiquing his lifestyle choices and his quest for longevity.

“Should we tell him he does not look 18?” a user commented.

“How about while he’s at it, get a face transplant?” another added, saying: “He looks 91!”

“Eat right, exercise, die anyway,” a user tweeted. “This is narcissism gone wild.”

However, Johnson has not let the backlash get the best of him.

“Responses today were surprisingly tame,” he said in a tweet last Thursday (26 January).

“Haters, I know you are hard at work creating zingers, take-downs, and insults. I’m looking forward to them!”

With inputs from agencies

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