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One Rule to Live Longer, Look Younger and Be Healthier
My starting point for this article is this: there are no right models but some models are useful. In other words, nothing is hard and fast in science. Our understanding evolves continuously and with it the world around us evolves as well. And I’m not necessarily saying that the evolution of our understanding means that we understand more. Sometimes we just get to a point where we realize we don’t understand anything. And these can be pivotal points as they make us go back to basics and start all over again.
So getting older, lengthening life and improving health (and appearance!) in later life… It seems science has gone back to basics on this one. And there’s one simple principle that emerges over and over again with every longevity study: Eat less.
Now, there are two main ways to eat less. Suppose you decide to reduce your calorie intake by up to X calories per day. (NB: I don’t know how many X that should be for you – it will depend on your body weight, physical exertion, etc.) One way to eat those X calories a day would be to spread them out throughout the day in frequent meals but small meal portions. Conversely, you can eat the same amount of calories during an 8-hour window (i.e. eat fewer but larger meals) and fast for 16 hours. The latter strategy is called intermittent fasting, and the scientific literature currently says this is the way to go if you want to live longer, look better, and feel healthier.
Therefore, researchers at the University of Alabama conducted a study with a small group of obese men with prediabetes. They compared a form of intermittent fasting called “time-restricted early eating,” in which all meals were either placed into an early eight-hour period of the day (7am to 3pm) or spread over 12 hours (7am to 3pm). :00 to 15:00). 7:00 pm). After five weeks, the eight-hour group had markedly lower insulin levels and significantly improved insulin sensitivity, as well as significantly lower blood pressure. And the best part: The eight-hour group also had significantly reduced appetites.
Another study compared the effect of eating one afternoon meal a day for 8 weeks and reported a 4.1% weight loss compared to an isocaloric diet eaten as three meals a day. One meal a day was also associated with reductions in fasting blood sugar and improvements in LDL and HDL cholesterol.
I can go on quoting other studies. Many of them are on rats, where intermittent fasting definitely extends lifespan and health by at least 10 percent (which, by the way, in the rat world means many years). But I want to bring this discussion back to its origins, which was my starting premise. Let us remember that in every religion some form of fasting is an important practice. Do you think it is for religious purposes per se? And do you think it’s a coincidence that all religions recommend incorporating a fasting regimen? I would think not. My guess is that people have always intuitively known what is best for them. And this intuitive knowledge is reflected in religious texts that act as handbooks for healthy living. In fact, if you follow the spiritual teachings (e.g. love unconditionally, forgive, be compassionate, let go and surrender, don’t overeat, etc.), you may live longer and healthier (provided you of course throw away the institutional “religious” crap that has been excessively enforced to serve the purposes of the upper class ego). Now science comes along and says the same thing that religions have been preaching for centuries: Intermittent fasting appears to trigger repair processes in the body which, in turn, boost health, improve appearance, and extend life. It’s not interesting!
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