Healthy and Slim

Perfect Body

Can a diet help you live 10 years longer?

Spare a thought for the billionaires of Silicon Valley. While the rest of us have been coming to terms with a weekly food shop that’s inflating quicker than the ego of an Apprentice contestant, they’ve been engaged in a cost-of-living crisis of their own.

From shelling out £7000 to have the contents of their brains uploaded to the cloud after they die (CEO of OpenAI Sam Altman) to parting with up to £170,000 to have bodies cryogenically frozen in liquid nitrogen (Peter Thiel, co-founder of PayPal) it seems the race to live forever is alive and well – if only you can afford to compete.

But while they were re-writing cheques and logic (anyone know how to defrost a body?) researchers were cooking up a more accessible solution.

In a paper published in the journal Cell, biologist Valter Longo examined a century of research on the influence of nutrition on ageing. As director of the Longevity Institute in California and professor of gerontology (the study of ageing), Longo has spent his career unpicking the mechanics of what was once deemed pot luck – your endpoint.

Now, he’s built a blueprint. Dubbed the longevity diet, he claims that by making subtle tweaks to both what and when you eat, you can increase your lifespan by up to 13 years. But will you be ordering from his menu?

PLATE EXPECTATIONS

Adjusting your nutrition to optimise your health: ground-breaking, it isn’t. And it’s true that much of the longevity research confirms what we already know about diets that are rich in fruit, vegetables, nuts, cereals, fish and unsaturated fats.

‘Diets which contain antioxidants, potassium and omega-3 support a reduction in cardiovascular disease and obesity risk, as well as protecting the brain from ageing,’ says Charlotte May, nutritional therapist and lead health coach

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