Cenegenics: Scam Or Scientific Age Management?Given the chance, who wouldn’t like to cheat death and live a longer life than the cards traditionally have in store for the average human being? Plastic surgery has long allowed the wealthier among us to shave a few years (or, in some cases, decades) off of their appearance, but this isn’t quite the same as life extension. Without being a vampire, a MacLeod from the clan MacLeod, Turritopsis nutricula, Dorian Gray, a Cylon, a Bristlecone Pine, A Time Lord, or any other variety of Methuselah from the legends of the wishful and wistful, growing old is just something we write off as a necessity of life — closely tied to dying and paying taxes (the former, the end result of growing old; the latter, an unfortunate condition that contributes greatly to the former).

Visionaries like Ray Kurzweil and Aubrey de Grey have their own ideas about how human beings might someday achieve greatly extended lifespans — even, they boldly proclaim, immortality — and we’re told that “someday” is soon. But without hinging all hopes on the speculation put forth by such fellows (as dangerously clever as such fellows may be), those of us who want to live longer lives have to make do with maintaining our bodies the old-fashioned (and, admittedly, tedious) ways: proper diet and exercise figuring chiefly into the equation.

The Cenegenics Medical Institute declares that “there is such a thing as healthy aging,” as if this is a novel, new-found discovery that it holds before us like a flashlight of hope in the darkness ushering us toward an invigorating life in our autumn years. So is Cenegenics a scam, or does it really guard the precious secret of turning the Golden Girls into the Spice Girls? (That was a reference designed to display a hint at my own age and, therefore, authority to write about this sort of thing.) Does it work like the magical alien pool water that blessed oatmeal aficionado Wilford Brimley and friends with youthful oomph in the movie Cocoon? The Cenegenics website claims that “The Cenegenics age management program is not a pill, a fad diet, or even radical surgery. It’s a unique, customized health program created for youthful aging.” Beyond that, there’s not much in the way of specific information as to what the Cenegenics age management program is (and the price tag is equally elusive). But you can write to the Cenegenics Medical Institute for free information!

With 14 locations throughout the US, Cenegenics seems to be doing pretty well for itself. With Cenegenics Atlanta, Cenegenics Beverly Hills, Cenegenics Boca Raton, Cenegenics Carolinas, Cenegenics Chicago, Cenegenics Dallas/Fort Worth ( two locations), Cenegenics Jacksonville, Cenegenics Las Vegas (two locations), Cenegenics New York City, Cenegenics Philadelphia, Cenegenics Tulsa, and Cenegenics Washington DC, it’s likely there’s one near you.

There’s probably nothing wrong with the Cenegenics system of “scientific age management” (and I doubt one could technically call Cenegenics a scam if it gets the job done), but is it a cost effective way of aging gracefully? Someone on a physician-prescribed health regimen who goes on a daily walk around the neighborhood and makes sure to take his or her fair share of recommended vitamin supplements and anti-oxidants could likely make the same claim. Maybe Penn and Teller will perform one of their famous exposes on Cenegenics (or declare it surprisingly adherent to its claims and worth every penny), but for now I’ll remain politely dubious about the program. If you’ve had experience with Cenegenics and can either confirm its efficacy or decry its assertions as anything but shyster scam fodder, please leave a comment!

CC licensed Flickr photo shared by AlphaTangoBravo/Adam Baker