Oprah’s 50-year-old man with a heart of a 20 year old.


Recently on Oprah, a 50-year-old man was interviewed. Using diet alone, he transformed his heart into that of a 20 year old. Is this something you should be doing? Or is this just another gimmick that is arriving on the horizon?

Calorie restriction diets diets have been shown to slow aging. Diets that are calorie–restricted slow down your metabolism, as the calorie consumption is reduced 30 to 50 percent below your BMR (basal metabolic requirements). Reducing calorie intake slows other systems as well (example: digestive enzyme production) which is believed to prolong our lifespan. Individuals who follow a calorie restriction diet consume less then 1000 calories per day.

It’s a no brainer that optimal nutrition is required to maintain good health. But as calories are reduced, every bite counts even more and each calorie needs to be very thoughtfully considered when you’re taking 80 percent versus 100 percent. You do not give any room for “off -track” behavior as this might can cause malnutrition. And in today’s environment, optimal nutrition means only organic foods and not conventional.

Keep in mind that you might lose more then you gain. When you exercise daily, you burn additional calories. Depending on intensity, duration and your choice of activity, you can burn between 300 and 600 calories per hour. Your body develops lean muscle tissue that needs to be fed and maintained with additional calories. The benefit of strength training and cardiovascular training is that it not only improves your digestive , immune, skeletal and circulatory systems, it has also been shown to improve mental outlook and help in managing depression.

In order to maintain an active lifestyle, you have to eat. If you want to gain lean muscle tissue and maintain your build muscle tissue it requires exercise and calories. Large framed and very active individuals need more calories then 1000 calories per day. A healthy active 6 foot tall male needs approximately 1800 calories and a female, approximately 1300 calories. Your frame adapts to your calorie intake. Hence, when you reduce your calories below 1000 calories, your body becomes slender. Yet when your goal is to strengthen, build muscle and improve physical performance, calorie restriction is not beneficial and it will works counter to your goal of building lean, fat-burning muscle tissue.

The benefits that you gain from an active lifestyle are more then just a few additional years. One of the benefits of regular exercise is that you can eat and enjoy meals that have more calories as you burn them off again. Discovering new worlds of strength, movement and activity improves your overall life experience and perspective. We are designed to move, not to be inactive. Our life-maintaining systems are strengthened through activity and challenged through external stress factors.

If you are planning to go on a calorie restriction diet, you need to weigh the benefit of maintaining an active lifestyle that includes regular exercise such as weightlifting, playing sports and outdoors activities such as hiking and swimming.

From my professional view, a calorie reduction diet below your BMR can be implemented at the right time with the right goal objective and time frame. But it may not be in your best interests when your goal objective is to build up lean muscle, increase performance and to tone and shape your body.

Stefan Aschan

Stefan Aschan is a leading expert on lifestyle, health and fitness who has helped more than 30,000 people get fit through advice on nutrition, fitness and lifestyle changes. For your free “How to live 100 years in perfect health” report and the must read “updates and solution” newsletter on how to have 10 times more success, stay on top of your goals, and accomplish the change of body and appearance,” click here.

Categories : Motivation, Nutrition



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