"Exercise and diet are the two most profound and easily accomplished efforts we have in our environment that can reduce our cardiovascular diseases," he said. "There are no five drugs on the market when combined that can approach what we saw in this study from moderate calorie restriction."
How Calorie Restriction Can Protect the Heart
The study included 21
Adults in the calorie restriction group reduced their caloric intake by 11.9%, not the intended 25%, the researchers noted, ranging from 2,427 calories a day to 2,707 – a decrease of 297 calories.
"This trial was going on for two years, so some participants could keep the restrictions and others were not as successful," Kraus said.
In each group, the researchers monitored carefully monitor each adult's cholesterol levels, blood pressure and triglyceride concentrations over a two-year period. These factors can affect your risk of heart disease.
The researchers also found that in the calorie restriction group, lowering of blood pressure was evident as early as six months, achieving statistical significance by one year and remained below the duration of the study.
The study is the first of its kind to investigate the potential impact of calorie restriction on health hazardous to healthy, non-obese young and middle-aged adults, the researchers wrote in the study.
"It would be interesting to see what happens to contestants in this study two years after the study stopped if they maintain these habits or not, says Dr. Subbarao Myla, director of Cardiac Cath Labs at Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian in Newport Beach, California, who was not involved in the study.
Myla , who called the study "well-designed," pointed out that during the study, participants were given behavioral capabilities to help them adhere to their diets
"All diet plans emphasize two-level sub-control – what you put on the plate and how much you consume," He said. "Having a life coach who can monitor, produce and tie is very important to maintain change."
"Finally, none of this works without controlling activity," says Myla, referring to physical activity or exercise. "The study did not address measures that are very difficult to control for. Weight loss is best complemented and achieved through increased activity."
"Food selection shaped by the habitat environment"
"Since individual food choices are shaped by the habitat environment, the long-term sustainability of calorie restriction and its benefits with body weight can be easily undermined," Hu wrote in the editorial board.
"Improving the habitat environment by making healthy food choices accessible, affordable and the norm while reducing the availability of extremely processed and very tasty foods is crucial to supporting healthy food choices," he wrote. "To this end, policy solutions, including sugar taxes, financial incentives to produce and buy healthy foods, food coding, and better regulation of food marketing, are needed to improve the global food environment."