Extreme Calorie Restriction as the Path to the Fountain of Youth?

Well, possibly the key to longevity.

The study of the effects of a calorie restricted diet on mice and now rhesus monkeys have led some to conclude that the reduction of  one’s caloric intake by 30% will lead to a longer life.

But the jury is still out.

The argument is that all the data is not in and has not been accounted for. That may be the case but I have seen other stories where people have bought into this theory and live their lives accordingly.

And what about the studies that conclude a little bit of chub is actually beneficial?

Who is right?

I don’t know if the studies will ultimately prove or disprove this theory but I don’t know if I could do it.

You may (or may not) live longer but how satisfying could it possibly be to live each day of your life in denial? According to BMI tables (Body Mass Index for the uninitiated), I am just a shade on the right side of obese- so I could stand to lose a chunk of weight. By my calculation, I would need to lose 25lbs to get myself on the right side of normal. Doable- and also a great excuse to shop if when I reach my goal.

By my estimation, if I were to cut my caloric intake by 30% and get my BMI to the lower end of normal (which is what some sites seem to recommend) I would have to drop 55lbs!!!  There is no bloody way I could function at that weight. I know my body type, and I would look skeletal. Rachel Zoe-esque- not something I aspire to. (Who wants to look like a Q-tip?) My absolute max would be a 45lb drop which would take my BMI to a hair under 21- but even that would be a stretch.

By why would I even want to go to this extreme? One may live longer but would you enjoy your extra years?

I love food. I may even be slightly obsessed with food but I am not advocating a Bacchanalian life of excess. Ultimately it is all about balance. Either end of the spectrum is a little scary. I choose to walk a middle (though perhaps slightly lighter) path.

We’ll see what happens the next time someone suggests all-you-can gorge eat sushi.

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~ by angryegg on July 10, 2009.

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