Seeking the Low-Calorie Fountain of Youth

While the nation has been supersizing their portions, a small group of Americans such as Francesca Skelton have been cutting back on their food intake, not to get into shape, but rather to slow down the hands of time. Skelton strongly adheres to "caloric restriction" and firmly believes this is the way to delay the aging process, by altering basic metabolic functions that slow down the decaying process of the body. A study showed that people like Skelton were protecting their bodies from leading causes of death such as heart disease. Skelton's diet consisted of 1,200 to 1,600 calories a day and included mainly fruit, vegetables and nuts. Scientists said that while obesity has become an epidemic in the United States, portion sizes have gotten increasing out of control. Evidence suggested that a person could begin to receive benefits from restricting their calories even in their middle age. Scientists claimed this diet might be proving to be successful due to the chronic state of mild stress that is created from the diet.

I do believe that eating less is likely to be healthier for us in the long run. This is largely related to reductions in insulin levels, the major accelerant of aging. In a past article, I wrote about the benefits of restricting calories to prolonging the life span. Controlled energy restriction is the only regimen that has been shown in the laboratory to increase lifespan, and therefore may be the foundational requirement for proper diet. This is one of the reasons why following a juicing program works so well. It provides a relatively low calorie, dense nutrition that does not raise insulin levels. Another great whole food option and low-calorie approach is Living Fuel, which provides dense nutrition with low calories and a minimal insulin response, and is very convenient for those who are often on the go.

Washington Post May 4, 2004

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