Scientists have known for decades that severely restricted food intake actually decreases the chance of getting cancer and can even reverse diabetes. Eating less can boost longevity by protecting the body’s cells from harmful deterioration. Evolutionary biologist Dr Margo Adler, as well as Dr. Eric Ravussin, director of the Nutrition Obesity Research Centre at Louisiana State University and many others, have stated that reducing food intake leads to increased rates of “cellular recycling” and cellular repair mechanisms in the body. The studies have shown that by cutting food intake by about 40 per cent we could live 20 to 30 per cent longer, which let’s face it, is a tremendous bonus if we have our health.
All living things require energy to survive. In animals, this energy is obtained from the food they eat. All animals, including humans, use this food energy to grow, develop and reproduce and repair. Through its metabolism, an organism maintains a balance between energy consumption and production.
People need three types of foods or macronutrients: carbohydrates, proteins and fats. Micronutrients in the form of minerals and vitamins are also essential. Macronutrients are broken down in the digestive system and transported into the bloodstream, where they are delivered to cells and usedby the cells to produce various forms of energy. Each of the different macronutrients produces different amounts of energy. Proteins and fats are essential to provide amino-acid building blocks for body proteins and to build, maintain and repair tissues. Carbohydrates are a necessary energy source found in vegetable and grain products. Nutritionists, dieticians and doctors agree that people must consume a variety of foods to fulfil their daily caloric requirements. Eating the same regular diet is boring and not as healthy as having a variety of different foodstuffs.
People who restrict calories or combine diets with exercise usually reduce their blood pressure, body fat and cholesterol levels, heart rate and weight. These factors cut the risk of chronic diseases. However the side effects of marked calorie restriction can include reduced bone density, memory loss, dizziness and depression.