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The longevity nutrition plan is a diet for healthy eating, developed by biochemist Valter Longo. He is director of the USC Longevity Institute at the USC Leonard Davis School of Gerontology. Longevity nutrition is meant to help people live longer, and especially healthier lives. The longevity nutrition recommends following a plant-based diet that includes little-to-no meat and poultry, and periodic fasting. The nutrition plan was designed for older adults. But it provides potential health payoffs for people of every age in all stages of life.
Longevity Nutrition Benefits
Based on Dr. Longo’s research of long-lived populations around the world, the main tenets are eating more plants, less protein, and fasting. Studies he was involved in took place in Greece, Italy, Japan, as well as studies in the United States.
One of these, published in October 2016 in JAMA Internal Medicine, assessed the dietary habits and health of more than 130,000 health care professionals.
How The Longevity Nutrition Plan Works
It is as much a lifestyle as an eating plan, and it can be followed for an unlimited amount of time. The guidelines include following periodically a five-day fasting throughout the year.
Longevity nutrition plan includes:
- Leafy greens like chard, spinach
- Fiber-rich vegetables
- Fresh fruits of all kinds
- Beans and legumes (chickpeas and lentils)
- Low-mercury seafood includes shrimp, salmon, and tilapia.
The longevity nutrition plan advises avoiding meat, poultry, and dairy products. These foods are high in saturated fat. If completely eliminating meat and poultry isn’t do-able, it is recommended, to limit them as much as possible. Just eat them in small quantities to add flavor to plant-based dishes.
In regards to dairy products: For those who want to have milk and cheese, the longevity nutrition plan recommends switching from cow’s milk and cheese to goat’s milk, goat’s cheeses, and yogurt. Goat dairy products are rich in minerals and have anti-inflammatory benefits.
Recommended Timing For Eating
So, all meals and snacks should be taken within a 10-to-12 hour time frame. For example, after 8 a.m., and before 6 p.m., at the latest 8 p.m. The guidelines also suggest not eating during the 3 to four 4 before bedtime.
People who adhere to the longevity nutrition plan are also fasting several times a year. This involves eating limited amounts of foods, mainly vegetables, nuts, and seeds, for five days.
Total calories for each day range from 800 to 1100, with 60% of calories from fats, 10% from protein, and 30% from carbohydrates.
So, there are no hard-and-fast rules regarding food preparation on the longevity nutrition plan. Although, it’s best to use low-fat cooking methods such as steaming, grilling, and sauteeing rather than frying.