Caloric restriction

We know this graph that has been ever so popular. What it says is that you eat super lower calorie you will live longer. Calorie restriction, or caloric restriction, or energy restriction, is a dietary regimen that reduces calorie intake without incurring malnutrition or a reduction in essential nutrients. Dieting is new way to living longer. So how do you diet? Low sugar? Low fat? Low carb?

BBC Horizon did a study on twins on fat vs sugar.  The Experiment was very simple. Two identical twins Chris & Xand. It was also pitched a bit as America vs. the UK, as America is starting to think that sugar is the baddie and the UK still thinks that fat is the baddie.

Chris Xand
Diet: Chris was given a virtually fat free/high carb/sugar diet for one month.  Chris’s food table are bread, bagels, pasta, rice, potatoes, any description of breakfast cereals and unlimited fruit and veg ultimately breaks down into blood sugar. With the sweets and fat free junk Chris was allowed, his table looked like a badly plated meals: 33% starchy foods; 33% fruit & veg; 8% junk and he just needed beans/pulses as non dairy protein and low fat dairy and he’d be on the perfect public health diet. His identical twin, Xand, was given a virtually carb free/high fat diet for the same period of time. Xand’s side of the table featured cheese, meat, butter, burgers, chicken with the skin on, double cream, mayonnaise, etc.  Xand is not allowed vegetables, but he’s allowed unlimited dairy – which, as rule of thumb, is approximately 5% carbohydrate (hard cheeses and fluid dairy defining the extremes). Burgers invariably have wheat, starch, rusk and/or sugar. Xand is seen later in the programme having meat slices, which invariably contain dextrose/sugar and mayonnaise invariably contains sugar, so Xand could also have been having sugar/starch inadvertently.
Test 1: A couple of extreme experiments are done to test brain and body function in the twins. Stock broking is used to simulate a brain test and the brothers go out with the Team Sky cycling coach, Nigel Mitchell, to test the body. There are two fundamental problems:  Chris was enjoying his low-fat diet, with its reciprocal high carbohydrate content and the energy it gave him. Chis made pots of money on the stock exchange.  Xand started by enjoying the Atkins-style meats, cheeses, creams and other high-fat foods, he was soon missing his carbs. He felt sleepy and lacked energy. His restricted carbohydrate supply limited glucose supply to his brain and he fared much less well in a test of mental agility and memory, playing the New York Stock Exchange on-screen. Xand lost track and struggled badly.
Test2: Both Chris and Xand are to cycle to the top of the hill.  Chris stormed on to the top. The high-carb/low-fat UK-style diet gave Chris tremendous energy. Any athlete or exercise-lover knows this: high intensity exertion and untrained muscles need glucose. This can only really come from dietary carbohydrate. When it came to physical performance, a fortnight into the diets, Xand soon flagged in a cycling trial up a hill (even with a Tour de France trainer) while
weight loss

– 0.5kg fat

-0.5kg muscle


– 1.5kg fat

– 2kg muscle

– 3.5kg

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