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Oct 3 2006 / Aaron

CR comments!

Wow, an actual discussion broke out in the CR post down below! Four whole comments! For the record, my current take on CR is one of cautious optimism. I’m highly skeptical that hard-core CR will provide big benefits in Humans. I am quite convinced that moderate CR is generally healthy, and will provide a lot of basic benefits for a small trade-off. I’m all about the science. If convincing evidence shows up on my doorstep tomorrow that moderate CR is harmful or has no significant benefit, then I’d probably stop at Burger King on the way to work. I don’t expect CR to yield a large extension to maximum human lifespan, but I do expect following a healthy CR lifestyle should keep me in great shape to benefit from future medical science developments mid-century. If moderate CR slows down aging, heart disease, cancer rates, diabetes, and dementia even slightly, then I find it a worthy sacrifice.

Personally, I’ve actually enjoyed the sacrifice of my previous ‘hollow-leg’ eating habits — I feel more self-possessed this way. I am no longer subject to the whims of the flesh. It’s a hell of a lot easier than being a Tibetan Monk, but I think the lifestyle shares some of the same principles of the monastic existence. It is a more environmentally conscious existence. Halting your out-of-control consumption of food spills over into other areas of life-as-consumer.

I am FAR healthier today than I was pre-CR. I’m not overweight, my blood pressure is out of the danger zone that it used to be in, and my doctor couldn’t believe how good my cholesterol levels were. I know I’m getting all my RDAs of vitamins and minerals. I have more energy and feel more vitality than I used to. I can hike up a mountain in half the time it used to take me, and not feel nearly as winded.

Lately, I’m getting roughly 1900 cals a day, which is only 10% CR (using Tony Zamora’s CR Calculator). 1900 calories is actually a decent amount of food. When I started CR I ate 1500, which was too hardcore for me to sustain. I lost weight too quickly at that level and going to 1800 I think is perfect for me. CR certainly is not for everyone. It helps if you already love vegetables πŸ™‚


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  1. Jette / Oct 4 2006

    They make fun of me at work for the amount of veggies I eat. One girl told me tonight that what I eat in one meal is about the same she eats in one week. Scary!

  2. Rodney / Oct 30 2006

    Hi Aaron:

    My bet is that you are mistaken about your: “I don’t expect CR to yield a large extension to maximum human lifespan”.

    Early results in rhesus monkeys, which were started on 30% CRON at the human-equivalent age of 50, indicate they are living a 30% longer total lifespan than the fully fed control group. If it happens in monkeys it would be very surprising if it didn’t apply also to humans.

    (Chief investigator Dr. Barbara Hansen)

    Thirty percent in humans would be a large number. So I expect the *average* lifespan of humans who adopt 30% CR no later than age 60 will likely be between 100 and 110. And most of them will likely be pretty much disease-free.

    Among CRON humans, the few lucky enough to live to the potential maximum will live beyond 120. Others of course will die sooner than 100. The ‘Jeanne Calment’ of caloric restrictors (i.e. the longest-living one person in five billion caloric restictors) should live well past her 122 years if the survival curve is shifted as far to the right as it seems to be in the monkey experiments.

    But of course that does not mean every person on CR will live beyond 120.

    All jmo, of course.


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