Inside This Billionaire's Quest for His 125th Birthday

David Murdock spending more than $500 million to unlock health secrets
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 6, 2011 6:48 AM CST
David Murdock (pictured here between Dr. Siu Albert and Martha Stewart) plans on living to 125, thanks to an uber-healthy diet of fruits and vegetables.    (AP Photo/Andy Kropa)

(Newser) – The 87-year-old billionaire David Murdock is putting his money where his mouth is—literally, investing more than $500 million to construct the North Carolina Research Campus, a cutting edge food research center that he says will help him live to 125. Murdock, who also owns Dole, the world’s largest producer of fruits and vegetables, eats up to 20 servings of fruits and vegetables a day, with plenty of seafood, eggs, and nuts, but no red meat, sugar, or salt. “Take the death off the table," he says in restaurants that offer a butter dish.

Spurred by the death of his wife to cancer in 1985, Murdock grew obsessed with the links between diet and health. "If I had known what I know today,” he says, “I could have saved my wife’s life." Doctors say Murdock is healthy for a man his age, but doubt he will reach 125. There’s been no documented intervention that has been shown to radically extend duration of life—ever,” said one doctor, who added, “He’ll be disappointed when he doesn’t reach 125.” Read the lengthy profile at the New York Times.

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