When I watched global health and development expert Alanna Shaikh‘s TED Talk I was very moved. Alana spoke about her very real fear of getting Alziehmer’s, as she watched her father deteriorate from this illness. So Alanna, while taking preventive measures, has decided that she will prepare herself for it by changing what she does for fun, improving her physical strength and trying to become a better person.
This particular line in her talk struck me deeply:
“I need a heart so pure that if it’s stripped bare by dementia, it will survive.” — Alanna Shaikh
Thankfully, Alziehmer’s doesn’t run in my family. But living long does. So I too would like to focus on improving the quality of my life, so that I can live a fruitful life. But most importantly, I too want a heart so pure that it will survive anything!
What about you?
Alanna’s bio on TED : TED Fellow Alanna Shaikh is a global health and development specialist with a vendetta against jargon. On her blog, Blood and Milk, she aims to make global development issues both accessible and understandable. In her TED Book, What’s Killing Us, she explains the biggest challenges in global wellness — from HIV/AIDS to the diminishing effectiveness of antibiotics – in a way that anyone can understand. Earlier this year, she co-founded AidSource, a social network for aid workers. She is also the co-founder of the group SMART Aid, which educates donors and start-up projects about international aid.
Alanna Shaikh is especially interested in Alzheimer’s, as she has watched her father deteriorate from the disease over the past 12 years. But she says the experience has not sent her into denial—she plans to be prepared for the genetically transmitted disease, should it ever arrive.