Defeat Aging With Maria’s Longevity Cookbook (Plus 3 Tips)
Watch PhD candidate Maria Konovalenko show you how diet can help defeat aging, or at least slow it down. Plus get my three tips to give you a head start on quick, dramatic results.
THE INSPIRATION for this blog post comes from biologist Maria Konovalenko, who has written the Longevity Cookbook, which she and her team present as a strategy to defeat aging.
That’s a tall order, but I’m sure if you sat down with Maria and asked her about it, she’d admit that current technology and know-how cannot defeat aging. This she would know, because Maria Konovalenko is a biology researcher studying at the University of Southern California and the Buck Institute in the U.S.
I know the Buck Institute. It’s a twenty-minute drive north of my home in Sausalito, CA. I’ve attended lectures there and have read some research papers they produce. Housed in an amazing looking building on the top of a bucolic hill just off Highway 101, the Buck Institute is comprised of a serious cadre of well-funded scientists that are devoted to a specific mission: “Extending lifespan, the healthy years of life”.
Note that the Buck Institute aims to extend lifespan, not make it infinite. As I often reiterate, the first order objective is to “bend your age curve” (see the graph on the Home Page), not to defeat aging, simply because right now – and perhaps forever – it’s not possible.
Moreover, if you run around saying you’ve discovered how to defeat aging, you’ll not be taken seriously and thus turn off a lot of people whose lives could be made immeasurably better if they would subscribe to extending lifespan by slowing down the aging rate.
Slowing down the aging rate is possible. Many people are doing it, including me. And in that cozy corner where you get to have a conversation with Maria, she’d say something like,
“Well, of course I mean that the aim of the Longevity Cookbook is to slow down aging, not eradicate… but, you know, poetic license…”
Besides the longevity aspect, another unusual trait of this book is that Maria and her team of fellow scientists and authors, managed to get the Longevity Cookbook funded on crowd-funding site, Indiegogo. As of a few minutes ago, they’ve raised $55,085, 104% over goal. If you’d like to check it out, click here.
I’d be remiss if I left you with the idea that Longevity Cookbook is simply a recitation of recipes. Oh no, Pilgrim; rather the book is structured to take the reader on a journey that begins with nutrients and exercise regimes, and then explore the usage of genetically modified symbiotic organisms, and using gene therapy to boost longevity.
Check out Maria Konovalenko… she’s gonna pump you up:
What You Can Do Now To Defeat Aging
See, I can also be hyperbolic with this “defeat aging” mantra. It just sounds better than “what you can do now to decrease your aging rate and bend your age curve”.
Until the Longevity Cookbook is published, and you get close and personal to all the age-defying secrets it will divulge, I offer you three tips that can decrease your aging rate… errr, I mean, Defeat Aging!
Tip #1: Grow a vegetable garden or meet your local farmer
Here’s some pics of my garden after just one month after I planted tiny little wee bitty seedlings:
If you don’t have room go vertical:
Farmers are everywhere and in many places they haul their produce to a local Farmer’s Market. Darya Rose, neuroscientist and Founder of the Summer Tomato website, writes extensively about the wonders of Farmer’s Markets. If you take a walk through her site, you’ll get inspired to make visiting your Farmer’s Market a weekly occurrence.
Two simple reasons they’re great is because you get your food fresh when it’s most nutritious, and the environment doesn’t have to suffer from the noxious carbon emissions emitted from driving produce all over the country to get it to you.
Tip #2: Blend it!
You could also juice your garden (or Farmer) veggies, but blending is quicker and I don’t want to conjure any excuses from you about being time-constrained.
The following picture is of my blender chocked full of the chard, spinach, kale and lettuce I just pinched from my garden. I add some other stuff and faster than you can make toast, I have my breakfast, predictably the most nutritious of my day, every day.
That’s the beauty of it – the consistency. Health requires you to be consistent. The ingredients of my morning drink vary, but every day I begin the day with a big green glass of superfood nutrition.
Today’s smoothie had this in it:
- The aforementioned, just-picked veggies
- Water and almond milk
- Kefir for the prebiotics that feed the beneficial bacteria in the GI tract (Read about it)
- Frozen blueberries for the antioxidants
- Frozen banana for the potassium, flavor and viscosity
- Ginger root to reduce inflammation and muscle soreness
- Whey and raw sprout protein powder to build muscle tissue etc. (Read about it)
- Spirulina for protein, vitamins, antioxidants
- Cinnamon for flavor and blood sugar control
- Chia seeds for the healthy omega-3 fatty acids and fiber
- Turmeric powder for inflammation control (Read about it)
- MSM powder for inflammation and oxidative damage protection (Read about it)
- Collagen Hydrolyzed, Type I & II for tendons, ligaments, bones, joint comfort and youthful skin (More about skin)
- Hyaluronic acid powder for joint health and mobility
- Resveratrol powder for antioxidants
- Trace minerals to optimize oxygen to the cells, normalizing the nervous system and the growth, maintenance and repair of tissue and bones
Sometimes this concoction comes out tasting pretty good, and sometimes not. I really don’t care, as my aim is superfood nutrition and to reduce my aging rate. Improved skin elasticity, joint mobility, reduced inflammation, protein, healthy fats and antioxidants all help to do just that.
I often change the ingredients. Don’t get your body reliant on the same thing. I will soon be receiving a box full of new supplements and will be changing the ingredients of my morning drink a bit. Subscribers will get an email about it.
The amounts of each ingredient should be tuned by the ingredient’s suggested usage (when available) and your tolerance and/or objectives. Don’t overload the spirulina – most people can’t handle more than a tablespoon, nor is it desirable to have more.
When it comes to fruit, a little goes a long way. I only use half a banana because it’s high in sugar. Don’t make the mistake of making your smoothie a fruit sugar orgy – opt for higher veggie content than fruit.
Tip #3: Make your morning smoothie your only fuel till lunch
This is about getting leaner and younger.
What could be better. 😉
There’s a lot to this, but to put it in a thimble, the research indicates that intermittent fasting can mimic caloric restriction, the only known, definite longevity enhancer proven in primates. (1)
The general consensus has been that to get the longevity benefits of calorie restriction, they must be reduced by about 30%. That’s tough to do, and some recent research challenges that assertion (2). That suits me because even if you want to, reducing calories by 30% forever is a recipe for unhappiness.
Another way to go about benefiting from caloric restriction, assuming there is a longevity benefit, is to apportion your calories during a certain time period.
I’m referring to intermittent fasting. Look it up. There’s a lot to read about it. Suffice to say, you spend a certain amount of time every 24 hours eating, and a certain amount of time not eating.
A typical schedule, and the one I follow several days each week (kinda) is to eat between 1:00 PM and 8:00 PM. That’s a seven hour window. The rest of the time, you’re drinking water and tea.
You can still consume the same amount of calories as normal during that seven-hour period – assuming they’re the right amount to maintain your body’s energy requirements, not to store energy (fat).
Why this routine mimics calorie restriction and may add to heath and longevity isn’t completely understood. But certainly it does tend to make your slimmer, and gives your digestion system a long break: 8:00 PM till 1:00 PM the next day, a whopping 17 hours. It’s not as hard you may think, as about eight of those hours are spent sleeping.
The reason I said that I “kinda” do this is because of my morning smoothie. I don’t know the calorie count of the drink, but it surely breaks the intermittent fast; however, the calories are far less, and nutrition far better, than a bacon and egg breakfast.
A Guilt-free Superfood
Speaking of bacon and eggs… well, the bacon part… you bacon diehards who would rather give up your first born than be without the smell, texture and taste of bacon might be interested in something new in the foodie world – dulse.
Yeah, it’s not something you encounter every day, even if you swim in the ocean. Dulse is a red algae and a “superfood” with twice the nutritional value of kale. (If you’re wondering what is “kale”, there’s no hope.)
As a recent CNN article, The holy grill: A guilt-free superfood that tastes like bacon reports, Chris Langdon, a researcher at OSU’s Hatfield Marine Science Center, has along with colleagues created and patented a new strain of dulse, a red seaweed which boasts amazing nutritional benefits.
Just one more thing to add to your morning smoothie. At least till the Longevity Cookbook comes out and helps us all defeat aging.
Until then, start your day with a green smoothie!
P.S. At the beginning of this post I wrote that to defeat aging may forever be an impossible dream, but regular readers know I’m a fan of inventor, futurist and Google AI engineer, Ray Kurzweil, who has a titillating conception, the “Three Bridges”. I encourage you to read: