Can Restricting Calories Help You Live Longer? Life Expectancy Diet

Research shows that a calorie restriction diet may provide the benefit of increasing your overall lifespan.

According to research, a calorie restriction (CR) diet may provide the benefit of living a longer life. However, it should be best recommended by a doctor or nutritionist.

Calorie restriction has been studied for more than 70 years as a strategy to improve health and increase lifespan, but the precise processes through which restriction exerts these beneficial effects remain unknown.

  • Studies have shown that people who reduce calorie intake may have a lower risk of developing blood pressure, diabetes, and cancer than those who ate their normal diets. Caloric restriction may, hence, lower their risk factors for heart attack, stroke, and diabetes, which may indirectly extend lifespan.
  • However, not all calories are created equal, and it is best not to sacrifice nutritional sufficiency for the sake of calorie restriction.
  • Cutting calories below that threshold, however, can result in fatigue, hunger, and death.
  • It is not known if the benefits of calorie restrictions are permanent, or they tend to last only for a short time.

For overall health and well-being, the best strategy is to limit your intake of excess calories from nutrient-deficient foods.

Is a calorie restriction diet a safe diet?

Calorie restriction is not a quick-fix diet. Rather, it is a matter of routinely eating fewer calories (a 25 to 40 percent reduction) while still getting all the necessary protein, vitamins, minerals, and other elements.

  • Calorie restriction demands the consumption of nutrient-dense foods and monitoring of vital nutrient intake.
  • If you are thinking about calorie restriction, consult a nutritionist to make sure you are getting all the nutrients.
  • Make every calorie count because a calorie-reduced diet low in amino acids, fatty acids, and micronutrients will not provide health and longevity benefits.
  • Simply reducing calories without concentrating on good nutrition might result in vitamin shortages that impact bone health, immunological function, concentration, and memory.
  • Avoid sugary drinks, added sugars, fast meals, and alcoholic beverages, which include empty calories.
  • Replace refined flour with whole grains, such as brown rice, quinoa, oats, and whole-grain pasta.
  • If the doctor recommends it, take nutritional supplements, such as a multivitamin. Consult the doctor about getting blood work done so that you can track your progress.

It is safe for most people to be on a calorie restriction diet if the diet plan is recommended by the doctor and people do not have any side effects.


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What type of diet is usually recommended to increase life expectancy?

Structures called telomeres to keep chromosomes from fraying and changing their genetically coded instructions. Genetic materials within cells shorten with age but much more slowly in people who eat a nutritious diet.

Studies suggest that individuals who ate fruits, vegetables, fruits, legumes, seeds, nuts, and healthy fats had the highest increase in telomere growth, whereas those who ate the least of these items had shorter telomeres and impaired growth.

A Mediterranean diet, according to studies, could be the key to living a longer life.

  • The diet consists of eating vegetables, fruits, nuts, beans and peas, unrefined grains, olive oil, and fish.
  • It is low in dairy, meat, and saturated fats. You can enjoy a glass of red wine with supper without feeling that you are cheating.
  • The diet has been regularly linked to health benefits, such as weight management, and lowering the risk of health conditions, such as cardiovascular disease.
  • A diet high in whole grains, vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, legumes, and beans increases the longevity of telomeres, which are connected to chromosomes in cells.
  • The Mediterranean diet focuses primarily on full, plant-based foods (not processed foods that may be vegan).

Eating a fresh, organically grown diet could be the key to a longer life.

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What foods may increase life expectancy?

According to studies, the following are common foods that may increase life expectancy:

  • Fennel
  • Bitter melon or gourd
  • Turmeric
  • Sweet potato
  • Shiitake mushroom
  • Burdock
  • Tofu
  • Seaweed
  • Beans
  • Nuts
  • Whole grains
  • Red chili peppers

According to studies, people who ate five servings of fruits and vegetables every day lived longer.

Including fruits and vegetables in the diet has numerous health benefits, including cancer-fighting, free radical-destroying, and tumor-suppressing characteristics, as well as immune-boosting elements. However, avoid expecting immediate effects because losing weight and being fit takes time.

Start small, set reasonable goals, and make concrete, long-term adjustments to your lifestyle that you can live with. Take tiny steps, include cheat days, exercise a few days per week, and don’t give up. Slowly but steadily, you will notice a difference, and your lifestyle will have altered to allow you to get and stay fit.


Weight loss occurs in the belly before anywhere else.
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Medically Reviewed on 3/8/2022


Image Source: iStock Images

Grabski I. Can Calorie Restriction Extend Your Lifespan? Harvard University.

National Institutes of Health. Calorie Restriction and Fasting Diets: What Do We Know?

Donovan J. Foods for a Strong Heart, Brain, and Bones. WebMD.

Denver Health Medical Plan. The 10 Best Foods for Longevity.


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