What is the most sustainable diet? The one with the least calories.

food and health

What is the most sustainable diet? The one with the least calories.

What is the most sustainable diet? The one with the least calories.

The most innovative studies show that to live a longer and healthier life one can do something more radical than simply eat according to the Food Pyramid: one must drastically reduce his or her calorie intake. However, improvised fasts can be dangerous. That’s why people, like Italian scientist Valter Longo, have created an imitation fast diet.

A dietary approach which, through a reduction in calorie intake (provided the proper consumption of all of the nutrients that the body qualitatively and quantitatively requires), helps one to live a longer and healthier life.” This is the conclusion reached by the BCFN experts in the book “Eating Planet”, after carefully analysing the scientific literature available. “In light of the various studies conducted – many of which are still under way today – on the influence which food has on health, we can affirm that calorie restrictions without malnutrition (intended as a reduction in calorie intake of up to 50%, but with an adequate consumption of vitamins and minerals) is one of the most powerful ways to slow down the ageing process and extend lifespan in many model animals.
After the studies conducted on model animals, the effectiveness of this strategy was demonstrated on people as well. Valter Longo, researcher at the University of Southern California (USC) and the FIRC Institute of Molecular Oncology (IFOM) in Milan, has experimentally proven the efficacy of an imitation fast diet (DMD), to follow periodically in order to contrast ageing, strengthen various systems including the immune and nervous systems, and reduce the risk factor of various pathologies including cancer.
Periodically adopting a low-protein diet for 5 days, under medical supervision, triggers positive and lasting effects on the body’s state of health, with changes to risk factors associated with ageing, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, obesity, and cancer,” explains Longo. “It’s about reprogramming the body in such a way that it slows the ageing process and is made more youthful through regeneration based on the stimulation of stem cells, induced by the metabolic state that is provoked by a reduction in calories.”
According to the experimental data that emerges from this pilot study, three cycles of a DMD administered once a month for five days reduced risk factors and biomarkers of ageing, diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and cancer without registering any significant side effects.
A total fast is difficult to adhere to,” says Longo, “and can even be dangerous. We have, therefore, developed a complex diet that provokes the same effects on the body. I have personally tried both the true fast and the brief caloric restriction, and I have to say that the former is much simpler and much safer.
During the five days of DMD, under strict medical supervision, individuals consume a series of supplements patented by Longo and for sale only in the United States. Longo in fact warns against radical forms of abstention from food, such as water fasting, and beginning the DMD without first consulting a doctor and without entrusting oneself to his or her care during the entire process. “Not everyone is in sufficiently good physical condition to fast for five days, and the repercussions on one’s health can be quite serious for those who do so improperly.” he says.
Furthermore, Longo recommends extreme caution for those with diabetes, who must not restrict their calorie intake when taking their insulin or oral anti-diabetic medication, while those with a body mass index of less than 18 should not do the DMD at all.
According to the BCFN experts in “Eating Planet”: “The exhaustion of the capacity to reproduce the cells that are consumed in the body’s reparative processes, leads to the progressive spread of inflammatory and degenerative conditions, such as atherosclerosis. Some chronic degenerative diseases may come from a progressive inability to address ongoing inflammation and the progressive failure of reparative processes (neurodegenerative illnesses). Other illnesses and health conditions, such as diabetes and obesity, on the other hand, produce an inflammatory state in the blood and in tissues capable of generating a more intense use of reparative processes, causing premature depletion which translates into a shorter life expectancy. A growing number of scientific studies emphasize the connection between different kinds of chronic pathologies and the state of “silent” inflammation generated by improper diet. These studies emphasize the way in which the type of dietary model adopted can positively or negatively impact the body’s inflammatory reactions. This level of inflammation is “low”, or rather inferior to the threshold necessary to provoke pain and is therefore “silent”. The prolonged presence of this level of silent inflammation, which implicates a more rapid consumption of the body’s reparative processes, has an impact on the onset of chronic illnesses and, therefore, on longevity and quality of life."

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