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 Integrative Medicine: Longevity: What are the Chances of Life Extension 

The conclusion is that anti-oxidant nutrition is a sensible addition to any Life Extension programme.

Lowering Core Temperature
The higher the normal core-body temperature of a species the longer is the average life span of its members; but the lower the individual core body temperature of a member of that species (compared with the average) the greater will its own life expectancy be as compared with its fellows. Temperature represents your metabolic rate, how fast fuel is burned per unit of body weight.

When insects are kept in a cold environment their core temperature drops and they can live extraordinarily long lives. It has been suggested that if we could respond in the same way to cold we would live to 200 years of age. Unfortunately though our core temperature goes up when we are cold, rather than down as it does in fruit flies!

If we could find a way of reducing our metabolic activity (as animals do when they hibernate) we could increase the potential for life extension. One proven way of achieving this is via deep meditation methods which have been shown to have precisely this effect.11

Calorie Restriction Lowers Core Temperature
And once again we see how the one proven method of life extension influences this area as well since Calorie Restriction methods effectively reduce metabolic activity as part of their effect.

It is therefore logical that as part of a life extension programme we should add meditation methods to the use of antioxidants, but that our prime aim should be towards balanced nutrition combined with calorie restriction.

Calorie Restriction
A large range of animals including large mammals have been shown to enjoy improved health, greater vitality, relative freedom from chronic disease as well as life extension of up to 40% (which would take the human life span to around 120) when careful calorie restriction methods are used.Is there human evidence for its efficacy?

Human Evidence
There is a great deal of evidence to support the value of Calorie Restriction, none more compelling than concerning the population of Okinawa where the population comes very close to living according to the guidelines set by Walford, Weindruch and Chaitow.12,13

There are accurate records of births and deaths in this part of Japan dating to 1872 and there are also extensive records kept by the Japanese Ministry of Welfare and Health which periodically evaluates and records dietary habits throughout the country.

Okinawa produces 40 times as many centenarians as the rest of Japan which as a country has a reputation for longevity.

Cancer, strokes, heart disease and other chronic killers are around half to two thirds the level of the rest of Japan, in Okinawa. So what do they eat in Okinawa?

Okinawa intake compared with Japan as a whole of Sugar is 25%, cereals 75%, Green and yellow vegetables 300%, Fish 200%, total protein intake 100% and ENERGY IN CALORIES 80%.

This is the Life Extension Diet in action, as recommended by Weindruch, Walford and Chaitow in their books, based on years of research.

Naturopaths have long used therapeutic fasting as a means of improving health and this is also a valid means of calorie restriction.14

The Plan
It has been shown by years of experimentation that there is a right and a wrong way of using Calorie Restriction when moving from a standard western diet.

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 About The Author
Leon Chaitow ND, DO, MROA practicing naturopath, osteopath, and acupuncturist in the United Kingdom, with over forty years clinical experience, Chaitow is Editor-in-Chief, of the ...more
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