Cutting back on your calorie intake by as little as 12 percent every day could have a big impact on your longevity and health.
Researchers wanted to see what impact there would be when people cut their calories by a quarter—but participants couldn’t manage it and were able to cut their daily intake by just half that, to 12 percent.
To their astonishment, researchers from the National Institutes of Health discovered that even this more modest reduction had a big biological effect; after two years, energy levels increased, metabolism improved, and inflammation decreased.
Other studies have drawn a similar positive picture. People who cut back on calories lost muscle mass and shed around 20 pounds in the first year and maintained the weight loss in the second year.