National Geographic : 2002 Nov
a day, eat salmon, which is high in omega-3 fatty acid, a powerful antioxidant. After three days I'm not sure how much more salmon I can eat, and I understand why some people tell Perricone that they'd rather smear the salmon on their face than continue with his program. But I feel great, and my face looks firmer and more alive, with better color. Having seen the effects of aging arrested by diet, injection, and surgery, I decide that my next stop will be a nursing home, where I can investigate the results of aging allowed to take its natural course. I'm thinking mostly about wrinkles, but a phone call from my sister brings me back to where the life cycle of skin begins-the sense of touch. Our mother, who is 86 years old and in poor health, has collapsed. When I walk into her hospital room, I lay my cheek on hers and lift her fingers into the palm of my hand. Although one of her eyes is partly open, the doctor says that she may not be able to see or hear me. I try to comfort her by talking, singing songs from my childhood, or just sitting quietly. I'm not sure what she can sense, but her skin feels warm and normal. I keep my fingers on her arm or cheek, anything to let her know that she is not alone and that she is loved. I realize that our only unbroken connection now is through touch. We are skin to skin, warmth to warmth. According to the textbooks, transduc tion within the skin is transforming physical energy to neural energy. But something far more important is occurring. Love and mem ory are flowing through my skin and into her dreams. Americans spend over 300 million dollars annually on injection of botulinum toxin-produced during World War IIby the U.S. biological weapons program.