By Mark Stibich, PhD

What You’ll Do: In this last week of the Longevity Diet Plan, we go easy on you. The changes are not as major as before, but they are important to your overall health. This week you’ll increase the amount of fruit that you eat while avoiding foods that may contain harmful chemicals.

How It Works: You’ll have fruit for dessert at least twice a day. This gives you a little “sweet” treat after a meal while providing your body with important antioxidants and vitamins. Meanwhile, you’ll work to avoid pesticides and chemicals that may be harmful.images-1

Get Motivated: We’ve made this week easy to give you some time to pull together all eight parts of the Longevity Diet Plan. You made the six hardest changes, now all you need to do is finish up. Keep with this diet and you’ll be healthier, have more energy and prevent chronic illnesses.

The Steps
Continue eating double veggies, more nuts and fish, less meat, and no white foods or dairy while you:

Enjoy Fruit:
Eat fruit as a dessert. A bowl of ripe strawberries or blueberries can satisfy that after-dinner sweets craving. Eat fruit whenever you want. Eat real fruit instead of juices (they send your blood sugar way up), and avoid smoothies (they have tons of calories and also cause your blood sugar to spike).

images-2Eat a whole variety of fruits — the more colors the better.
Avoid Chemicals: Avoid any and all foods that have chemical ingredients. Some of those chemicals are food industry code for “concentrated sugar.” Ingredients like high fructose corn syrup can directly cause metabolic syndrome and lead to huge increases in your risk for diabetes. Chemicals are basically a big “unknown” in your food. Look at the labels on all your food –- if don’t recognize something on the list, put the item back.

Commitment: I will stick to all eight steps of the Longevity Diet Plan: More veggies, fish, nuts and fruit; no dairy or white foods; no (or much less) meat; and no chemicals.

Buy organic when you can — Any non-organic fruit can contain pesticides and chemicals, but fruit that contains a lot of moisture — like berries, for example — can be particularly prone to sucking up these undesirables from the ground. The same goes for vegetables. You can identify organic produce in the grocery store because it will have a five-digit code (instead of the normal four-digit code) on its label/sticker, and the first number is always a 9.
Read labels — If you don’t know what something is, put it back. You want to eat real food that comes from nature — through the magic of seeds, sun and water. You don’t want to eat food that was made in a factory through the magic of chemistry.images-5

You may have thought we overlooked eggs – we didn’t. Eggs are fine as an occasional food. They contain cholesterol and other fats. The American Heart Association recommends eating no more than 300 milligrams of dietary cholesterol per day. A single egg contains 213 milligrams of cholesterol, so it is OK to have an egg as long as you strictly limit other cholesterol intake throughout the rest of the day. Still, don’t make eating eggs routine. Eat fewer eggs, if for no other reason than the other stuff you’d likely eat right along with them — buttered toast, bacon — is not the best for you.

Remember, you should not be hungry on the Longevity Diet Plan. You can eat all the fruits, veggies and nuts that you want. Keep yourself satisfied while you are making the changes in your diet. Don’t worry about weight loss yet, just start eating healthy.


There are many other foods that are good for you. Green tea, red wine, and dark chocolate are just a few examples. You can include these in your diet as you wish (just count the calories, and remember to drink alcohol responsibly). Don’t forget about beans and soy products, which are great sources of healthy protein. Drink water, lots of water. Now that you have mastered the Longevity diet, making these final changes should be a snap.



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