The 24-hour shutdown experiment

What if we could stop everything, for just 24 hours, to rest, reboot and refocus? Take a day away from the gadgets, gizmos, to-do lists and anything remotely connected to work. Could that be the elusive secret to a long and healthy life?

I first became interested in this possibility when I made a BBC documentary, Living Longer in Lovely Hill, in which I met the Seventh Day Adventists of Loma Linda, a quiet university town about 100km east of Los Angeles.

They are one of the longest-lived groups of people in the world and scientific studies have linked their lifestyle to increased longevity.

I was also surprised by how good I felt about my 24-hour shutdown. I had stepped out of my comfort zone, yet nothing calamitous had happened. I felt tranquil yet invigorated. Of course this will have all been in vain if I merely return to my old ways and I have committed to the reboot lifestyle for a year.

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