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Study: Calorie Restriction Sheds Pounds, But Won’t Make You Live Longer

Whitney | September 12th, 2012

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A new study suggests that while calorie restriction may be helpful in terms of losing weight, it may not have much impact on longevity. The study, involving rhesus monkeys, indicated that while a diet of reduced calories may contribute to the general health of the person, it won’t necessarily help that person live longer. This study contradicts the findings of a similar study on monkeys in 2009 in Wisconsin, which linked calorie-cutting to a longer life expectancy.

How to Lose Weight Fast: More than Calorie Counting

The results of this study indicate that calorie-cutting alone is not the key to a longer, healthier life. The team at The Center for Medical Weight Loss has subscribed to this theory for some time, teaching patients that the best diet to lose weight is one that is combined with daily exercise and personalized counseling, including an ongoing series of motivational tools. The centers have produced numerous stories of weight loss success: A study published in the American Journal of Medicine showed that the average weight loss for people entered in the program was 11.1% of their body weight in 12 weeks. For someone who weighs 250 pounds when starting the program, that comes out to 28 pounds shed in 12 weeks.

Study Looks For Most Effective Diet For Longevity

The study was conducted by researchers from the National Institute of Health, and results were recently reported in the L.A. Times. Scientists followed two groups of rhesus monkeys over the lifespan of the animals to get their results. One group of monkeys was allowed to eat as much food as they wanted, while the other group was given 70 percent less food than they had been eating prior to the study. The purpose of the study was to see if strictly limiting calories would impact how long the monkeys lived.

The study found virtually no difference in longevity between the monkeys that ate a restricted-calorie diet and those that did not. However, the lower calorie count did appear to reap significant health benefits, warding off diseases like cancer and diabetes.

The findings contradict the 2009 study; however, researchers acknowledged differences in dietary choices could have contributed to the discrepancy. The monkeys in the 2009 study were fed a diet much higher in sugar, which may have contributed to exacerbated health problems for the group of monkeys on unrestricted diets.

Best Diet to Lose Weight Is Doctor-Supervised

The recent study results offer constructive information for those interested in learning how to lose weight fast and enjoying a healthier lifestyle overall. Calorie control is an important component in any successful diet, but it is not the only one. The choice of food (veggies, fruits, whole grains, lean meats), a balance of elements such as healthy fats, complex carbs, fibers, and an avoidance of excess sugar are also key, as is getting regular exercise.

Those who are serious about finding the most effective diet for their needs may want to consider a physician-guided program like that offered by The Center for Medical Weight Loss. The customized programs are created and overseen by a doctor who is an expert in weight loss strategies, and who provides patients with personalized counseling to help them understand the causes of overeating and how to overcome those obstacles.

Dr. Michael Kaplan, founder and chief medical officer for the Center, explain, “Our one-year success rate is impressive: 95.3% of people in the program maintained weight loss after one year and did not gain back the weight.”

There are over 450 centers throughout the U.S. to help dieters reach their weight loss goals. Use the zip code box at the right to find out if there is a center near you. Special introductory offers are available at select locations.