Thursday, May 26, 2011


The best current information we have on how to extend our life and our health is through calorie restriction.  Calorie restriction is a way of eating on vastly fewer calories than the majority of us eat.  The "typical" American diet is 2,000 calories.  This is the amount on which all nutritional food labels base themselves.  Calorie restriction is defined as somewhere around 1200 a day.  The average daily metabolic rate is the amount of energy we need just to perform basic life tasks - like sitting, thinking, and breathing.  It is about 1200 calories, so calorie restriction is like eating a minimal amount of food for existence.

Because the amount of food you are consuming is so close to the minimum needed, it is a diet that requires serious thought and a great deal of intentionality.  The 1200 calories cannot be junk food!  The limited calories do not allow room for "empty calories" of any kind.  They must be the most nutritionally dense foods you can get.  Nearly everything that goes into your mouth needs to count for something.  There needs to be a good balance of protein, carbohydrates, and fat, along with intake of adequate vitamins and minerals.  Eating this way will bring one's weight down to the low ranges of normal, but done well over a long period of time it will add years to your life.  It is not something to leap into.  In fact, getting yourself down to the 1200 calorie limit should take place over a long period of time involving months.  The first step most of us can take is to eliminate sugar and white/processed foods and start taking in lots more vegetables.  We're moving into summer, the best time of the year to enjoy the rich availability of fresh produce.  Start there.  Then check out the Calorie Restriction Society Website for more information: click here

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