The Ultimate Baby Boomer Diet

food pyramidI heard it first from a doctor, urging me to shed some weight instead of starting medication to lower my blood sugar: “Starving mice live longer.”

That near-nothing diet is a tad too drastic for baby boomers, but the principle still applies. Lab animals on this program live about 30% longer than normal.

One expert boldly states that calorie reduction “is the only nutritional regimen thought to retard aging.” Even midlife mice can start the diet and get the longevity benefit.

If the average baby boomer expects to live to 85, a 30% increase gives you an additional 25 years. Is it worth it? Just how many calories do you have to give up?

For those 51+ who are “moderately active,” the American Heart Association sets guidelines from 2000-2200 calories for females, 2200-2400 for males. The average American adult consumes a whopping 4000 a day.

The Calorie Restriction Society is almost 20 years old – not a pop culture fad diet. It goes beyond the American Heart Association to recommend 1100 to 1950 calories a food pyramidday, depending on height, weight and gender. A study of eighteen members ages 35 to 82 revealed a blood fat lower than 95% of those in their 20s. The average blood pressure was 100/60 – typical for a 10-year-old.

Some scientists believe such a restricted diet would only modestly increase life span. There are two serious downsides. The regimen tends to lower the libido. And researchers report that skinny mice are mean: “If you take the lid off the cage, they immediately bite you.” Humans on the diet list “crankiness” as a side effect.

By the way, I lost a mere 10 pounds and my blood sugar fell into the normal range. I’m not usually cranky and my libido is fine.


According to the US Department of Health and Human Services in the Dietary Guidelines for Americans inside of My Pyramid published by USDA, they recommended the follow number of calories per day that you should eat:

For a person who practices 30 minutes or less of moderate physical activity, the number of calories that they should eat:

Females-------51+ years old 1600 calories
Males----------51+ years old 2000 calories

Terry Hamburg writes the Boomer to You blog about the exciting and revolutionary baby boomer years.

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