Category: Calorie Restriction

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Creative Deprivation: How to Get Less from Your Food

When it comes to calories, inefficiency is the name of the game.

We know that less weight is healthier and leads to longer life, but the desire to eat runs deep, and dieting through willpower works for almost no one. So we look for tricks that will let us eat more and weigh less. Two articles from Scientific American this month are most enlightening. One demonstrates that the number of calories we extract from food varies widely from the standard method as reported on the label. The other recounts ways in which some foods triggers hormonal signals that say “burn me!” while others tell the body to “store me as fat!”

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Fasting on a schedule

Eating less is the best-tested and surest way to a younger body and an increased life span. But it’s a hard discipline to maintain, and many of us would welcome an easier alternative. Perhaps we can realize some of the benefits applying a more temporary exercise of willpower, with intermittent fasting. It’s counter-intuitive, but seems to be true, that health and longevity are better served by clumping up our food consumption (feast and famine) than by spreading food consumption evenly through the day and through the week.