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Afraid to Use my Real Name

Is muscle acquisition "bad" for caloric restriction, since gaining muscle increases the amount of calories one requires?

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Let's say I'm basically just skin and bones, with almost no muscle at this point.

And, let's say I need 2,000 calories a day, to "power" the 'skin and bones' I have.

If I understand correctly, I can gain the benefits of caloric restriction for longevity by restricting my daily intake by 50%, to 1,000 calories.

But, let's say I start working out.

Then, I would acquire muscle.

And, my caloric daily requirement might grow to 2,500, or, maybe even 3,000 calories a day.

This would be bad, right? Since to gain the same benefits of caloric restriction for longevity as before, by consuming 1,000 calories a day, I would have to restrict myself to one-third of what I need, instead of just one-half of what I need? I assume that would be significantly harder.

Or, would caloric restriction at 1,500 calories per day with a 3,000 calorie daily need provide the same longevity benefits as restricting caloric intake to 1,000 calories per day for the same person with a 2,000 calorie a day need?

Thank you in advance! This is my first post on this forum. Hopefully, it'll be the first of many.

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It's an unknown - it depends on whether or not the "pro-longevity factors" secreted by the cell/blood are stimulated at a higher caloric intake if you have more muscle/higher basal metabolic rate caused by such muscle.

There's a dif between IDEAL and median case - muscles are an amazing buffer against many insults (whether it be muscle wasting or glycemic spikes) and this is relevant for most people b/c most people are more "median case" than "ideal case"

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Hi Afraid,

Welcome to the CR forums! And thanks for your reply Alex. Nice to see you answering a question too. 🙂

Afraid, the topic you bring up is one that is very near and dear to my heart. It is what I've called the 'net' vs. 'absolute' calorie debate. Rather than recapitulate an answer here, I'll point you to the post where this is discussed in the most depth. Short summary - I believe it is net calories (intake - expenditure) rather than absolute calories (intake alone) that kicks the body into the active metabolic state associated with the health and longevity benefits of CR. 

This is also somewhat related to Khurram's "built-in fitbit" hypothesis discussed recently here.


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