Getting older is inevitable but, the quality of life and living is optional. We are in control of the outcome. Many people are happy if they are comfortable. Maintaining comfort and avoiding pain is their focus which results in a limited life. Others are desirous of a life in which they remain active, experience new challenges and continue to make contributions to their families and communities. The ability to experience optimal health depends on the maintenance of flexibility and resilience at a physical, physiologic, metabolic and cognitive/emotional levels.
Diagnosing and treating disease is a process which has evolved over many generations. One crucial step is to identify the metrics that define optimal health and then provide support for one to achieve their goals in this regard.
The principal therapies and support mechanisms offered by Integrative Medicine at Crossroads include diet, nutritional supplementation, herbal treatments, exercise, physical therapies, energetic therapies, and self-regulation therapies.
Diet is one of the most important ways to optimize flexibility and resilience on the physical, physiologic, metabolic and cognitive/emotional levels.
Calorie Restriction and Fasting have emerged as important dietary practices to optimize Life Span and Health Span.
Variations on Calorie Restriction include:
Time Limited Eating: restricting food intake to 10-12 hours per day. You may have a snack at 7 pm and not eat again until 7 am.
Total calorie avoidance as in water fasting, (zero calories), for one or more days periodically.
Moderate calorie restriction, (500-700 calories per day), once or twice per week is a popular plan. The 5/2 Diet is an example.
The Fasting Mimicking Diet is a plan where one restricts calories for 5 days. Pre-packaged meals are provided which literally mimics the effects of total fasting without the discomfort and exhaustion. The proportions and quality of Protein, Carbohydrate and Fats are carefully designed to produce an optimal result.
The Fasting Mimicking Diet provides the best evidence for ease of use and optimal health outcomes. This is a 5-day program; however, the beneficial effects last long beyond the five days.
It is recommended to be under the supervision of a medical provider while doing this diet. I suggest that it be done monthly until your visceral fat is reduced to the desired level and then be done every 2 to three months to continue to optimize the healthy aging benefits.
Future articles will address:
The metrics for optimal aging applied to the individual
Implementation of different types of calorie restriction.
What to eat when you are not ‘fasting.’
Applying Integrative Medicine principles to optimize general health and aging with the best health possible.
Please read “The Longevity Diet” by Valter Longo Ph.D.