Diet, Calories, and Stress?

by James G.
(Fayetteville, Arkansas, USA)


My question is about diet and its implications on the aging process. On TV sometimes you see people who have lived to an advanced age and often only eat a few hundred calories per day, which of course means they eat no animal products.

Do you think there is any real science behind this or are these only lucky people? Maybe their low fat and low cholesterol diets are more important than actually eating so few calories?

Also how do things like stress and coping effect the aging process? I've heard a little about the stress hormone being really bad for the body and that many things in modern life cause it to be too high.

What are some good stress reducing methods or products that you would recommend to help lower the stress hormone and keep it low?

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Aug 05, 2009
Diet, Calories, Stress, and Longevity
by: George Parigian Jr.

Hi James,

Thanks for your question. Its an interesting one!

I can see why this topic is confusing, so I will try and clarify things a bit. First, there is valid scientific research that indicates (in laboratory animals) that calorie restriction increases the lifespan of the animals in the experiments.

Dr. Roy Walford was deeply involved in this research and followed a restricted calorie diet himself. Unfortunately he died in his 70’s.

Scientists are not certain why caloric restriction increases lifespan in animals, but
we do know that insulin levels have an affect on lifespan, again in animal experiments. We also know that human diabetics who use insulin tend to have shorter life spans than average, and more chronic health problems.

It may be that insulin is the key here, rather than simply a reduction in calories, or an avoidance of animal proteins, which by the way DO NOT raise insulin the way grain products do.

As for their being a genetic basis for longevity, I think this idea is valid. It may be that some individuals are genetically able to handle stress better, and/or that their ability to metabolize carbohydrates (the insulin connection again) is a factor in their longevity.

Check out my web pages on this topic:

Stress has a negative impact on health and longevity. Stress also raises blood glucose levels, which in turn lead to elevated insulin, which is a pro-inflammatory hormone. Since inflammation is a major factor in chronic disease, reducing the stress that leads to this inflammatory cascade is one of the most important ways to live a healthy and long life.

Check out my web page on stress here:

One of the quickest and easiest anti-stress techniques is something called the “speed trace” from the science of Doyletics (NOT Dianetics). Read about it here:

Last but not least is my page on reducing the stress hormone cortisol:

Hope the pages on these links provide answers to your questions. Fee free to write again if you have more questions.

Best Regards,


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