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The Effects of Metabolic Age: Tips for a Healthier, More Vital Life

The Effects of Metabolic Age

Metabolic age measures one’s overall health and vitality and can provide valuable insights into the risk factors for chronic diseases. There are a number of ways to reduce metabolic age and improve overall health. In this article, we will explore what metabolic age is and offer practical tips on how to lower it for a healthier, more vibrant life.

What is metabolic age

To understand what metabolic age is, it may be beneficial to start with the notion of metabolism. Metabolism is the sum of all chemical reactions within cells, ultimately enabling the entire body to operate smoothly and consistently without interruptions or irregularities.


Metabolic age is a way to tell if your body works the way it should. It’s based on metabolic parameters: how fast your body uses energy. It’s different from your biological age, which depends on many things, like how healthy you are, what you eat, if you have bad habits, and how active you are. Metabolic age measures how well your body’s metabolic processes are functioning compared to others your age.

What can metabolic age reveal about your health

Metabolic age can provide valuable information about your body’s status and how you can improve your health.

Knowing your metabolic age can also help you understand your risk of developing chronic diseases. Suppose your metabolic age is higher than your chronological age. In that case, it suggests that your body is not functioning correctly, which could increase your risk of developing diabetes, heart disease, or cancer. Monitoring your metabolic age over time can help you address any concerns.

Body composition is essential in determining metabolic age.

Younger Relative Metabolic Age Is Associated with a More Favorable Body Composition and Plant-based Dietary Pattern

A body composition analysis can provide insights into how your body stores and uses energy by analyzing fat mass, muscle mass, and water content. A high metabolic age and a high percentage of body fat suggest that your body is not efficiently using energy. In contrast, low metabolic age and a high percentage of muscle mass indicate that your body is effectively using energy to build and maintain muscle tissue.

Metabolic age is a valuable tool for assessing overall health. Still, it is not a perfect indicator of health on its own. While metabolic age provides insight into the efficiency of metabolic processes in the body, it does not consider other important factors such as genetics, lifestyle habits, and environment, which can all impact health. Additionally, metabolic age can vary depending on the method used to measure it, which means that different tests may provide different results.

It is important, therefore, to use metabolic age as one of the many indicators when assessing overall health and to consider other factors as well.

How to calculate metabolic age

An easy way to determine metabolic age is by using online calculators. They allow you to evaluate whether you provide the most favorable conditions for your body to perform its functions correctly. The accuracy of the result may not be as trustworthy as when using a clinical test. This is why we recommend consulting a specialist and conducting a professional test that will help to determine metabolic age more accurately.

The best way to determine your metabolic age is by using a body composition test called bioimpedance analysis. This test uses a weak electric current to measure the resistance of different tissues in your body. The results are analyzed by a computer and shown as graphical figures.

The Theory and Fundamentals of Bioimpedance Analysis in Clinical Status Monitoring and Diagnosis of Diseases

Bioimpedance analysis can measure the following indicators:

  1. Fat mass.
  2. Fat-free mass (shows constitutional characteristics).
  3. Active cell mass (an indicator of protein supply in the body).
  4. Percentage of active cell mass to fat-free mass (a marker of hypodynamia or decreased energy usage).
  5. Skeletal muscle mass (characterizes overall physical development).
  6. Percentage of skeletal muscle mass to fat-free mass (assessment of physical strength and endurance).
  7. Total body water.
  8. Rate of metabolic processes.

How to calculate metabolic age

What is important, different devices can vary in accuracy of the bioimpedance analysis due to several factors, such as:

  • the quality and number of electrodes used
  • the algorithms and formulas used to calculate body composition
  • the calibration of the device
Nata Gonchar

Holistic Nutritionist, founder
of the project WOW Bali

TOP-10 ingredients
for your health and
balanced meal plan
Nata Gonchar

Holistic Nutritionist, founder
of the project WOW Bali

As Hippocrates said, you are what you eat. The meaning of this phrase concerns every person, who takes care of his health. The food we eat has a big impact on our vital activity, state of health and quality of life.

Nowadays healthy diet is very popular and everyone knows that he should give up junk food. But not everyone knows what he must eat except for grain, vegetables and protein food.

It's essential to diversify your diet. Every bite of food should provide you with vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients that are necessary for good health.

So how can we have a proper nutrition plan?

We prepared a PDF-file to help you. It contains TOP-10 ingredients, which should be added to everyone's diet.

Professional-grade devices are more accurate than consumer-grade devices. Still, even professional devices can have some level of measurement error. It’s essential to keep that in mind when assessing your metabolic age.

Does lifestyle affect metabolic age

The actual age of a person is determined in calendar years. Throughout our lives, changes occur in our bodies. For example, the percentage of fat may increase with age, and the weight of muscle mass may decrease. Since fat cells consume less energy than muscles, so the number of calories burned at rest decreases significantly yearly.

As a person ages, their body uses less energy every day, which happens gradually over time.

Energy Expenditure and Aging

From the age of 20, the average decrease in the body’s energy needs is about 150 calories every 10 years.

However, it is possible for the body to age prematurely. The reason is simple: an unhealthy lifestyle, mainly due to irregular physical activity and poor dietary choices such as consuming low-quality fats, high amounts of sugar, fast food, and an inadequate diet.

Unfortunately, as significant portion of the population ages rapidly, it poses a severe problem requiring time and effort to address it.

Does weight loss improve metabolic age

As body composition is considered when measuring metabolic age, many wonder whether weight loss can improve the results. But the answer is more complex.

Metabolic age can indeed be improved by losing weight. As a person loses weight, their body fat may decrease, and their muscle mass may increase. Since muscles burn more calories than fat, having more muscle mass can increase a person’s metabolic rate. This can result in a lower metabolic age. However, this effect may be limited and depends on the specific circumstances.

It is important to note that weight loss alone may not be enough to improve metabolic age. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is critical to optimizing metabolic health. This includes a balanced diet, regular physical activity, and getting enough sleep. Losing weight through unhealthy means such as crash dieting or extreme calorie restriction can harm metabolic health.

These approaches can lead to muscle loss, lowering the metabolic rate and increasing metabolic age. Therefore, sustainable weight loss achieved through healthy habits is more likely to improve metabolic age.

Factors that increase metabolic age

As we explained earlier, imbalances in body composition, such as high body fat percentage and low muscle mass, can raise our metabolic age. But other factors contribute to higher metabolic age. They include:

  • Poor diet. Unbalanced nutrition promotes weight gain, can reduce muscle mass, and may increase inflammation in the body.

Nutrients and Inflammatory Diseases

  • Sedentary lifestyle can lead to a loss of muscle mass and decreased overall physical activity, resulting in a slower metabolism and a higher risk of chronic diseases. Insufficient physical activity is responsible for 3.2 million deaths worldwide each year.

Physical inactivity

  • Smoking can increase metabolic age by damaging the lungs and cardiovascular system, leading to decreased physical activity and a slower metabolism. Additionally, smoking causes oxidative stress and inflammation, which can accelerate aging.

Smoking, health, and aging

  • Lack of sleep disrupts the body’s natural hormonal balance, leading to insulin resistance, increased cortisol levels, and inflammation, which can all contribute to an accelerated aging process.

Impact of insufficient sleep on total daily energy expenditure, food intake, and weight gain

  • Chronic stress disrupts the normal functioning of the body’s stress response system. This results in hormonal imbalances, contributing to weight gain and other metabolic disturbances.
  • Medical conditions including diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol levels. These conditions can damage the blood vessels and organs, increasing the risk of chronic diseases and raising the metabolic age.

Diabetes mellitus correlates with increased biological age as indicated by clinical biomarkers

  • Certain medications can affect metabolism. These include the beta-blockers used to treat high blood pressure, some antidepressants, anti-seizure medications, and certain steroids used to treat inflammation.

Drugs That Affect Body Weight, Body Fat Distribution, and Metabolism

  • Hormonal imbalances, such as those associated with menopause in women. This hormonal shift can cause a decrease in muscle mass and an increase in body fat. Additionally, hormonal imbalances can affect insulin sensitivity, contributing to metabolic disorders such as diabetes and high blood pressure.

How to slow down aging

Suppose you want to keep your metabolic age lower than your chronological age. In that case, paying more attention to lifestyle and nutrition is essential.

According to scientific research, the aging process is accelerated by oxidative stress caused by an unhealthy diet. It provokes inflammation and the breakdown of healthy cells, accelerating aging.

Intermittent fasting is a dietary practice that can reverse the damage, reduce inflammation and oxidative stress, remove damaged cells and waste products, and activate DNA repair processes.

Intermittent and periodic fasting, longevity and disease

Intermittent fasting

Intermittent fasting is a way of eating where you alternate between periods of eating and fasting. The most popular intermittent fasting approaches are:

  • The 16:8 everyday method. All meals should be consumed within an 8-hour “window,” followed by 16 hours without food (water or herbal tea is allowed). The optimal number of meals is 2.
  • 24-hour fasting once in 1-2 weeks – after a full breakfast, there is a 24-hour period without food (water is allowed). It is recommended to have a low level of physical and intellectual activity on this day.

Intermittent fasting

However, it’s important to emphasize that intermittent fasting is not an appropriate dietary approach if you have the following:

  • acute gastrointestinal tract diseases
  • adrenal exhaustion
  • eating disorders
  • periods of intense physical or emotional stress

It’s also not recommended if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

If you have certain health conditions preventing you from trying intermittent fasting or have trouble following such a diet, you can try a different strategy called Fast Mimicking Diet (FMD).

Fast Mimicking Diet (FMD)

This diet allows you to experience the benefits of fasting while minimizing the negative effects of restricting calories for long periods.

A Periodic Diet that Mimics Fasting Promotes Multi-System Regeneration, Enhanced Cognitive Performance, and Healthspan

With FMD, you eat significantly fewer calories for three to five days each month and then return to eating normally for the rest of the month. You repeat this cycle until you achieve your desired results.

What foods are allowed on FMD? Animal-based products are generally not allowed during the fasting period.

The diet includes sources of plant-based fats, plant-based protein, and complex carbohydrates.

  • fresh and cooked fruits and vegetables (preferably seasonal and farm-fresh)
  • dark chocolate with high cocoa content (80% or more),
  • herbal teas and infusions: chamomile, Icelandic moss, dandelion root, centaury, yarrow, pennyroyal, milk thistle – will support normal bile function during meal breaks
  • vegetable broths
  • seaweed and algae
  • nuts and seeds: flax, chia, almonds, coconut, macadamia, walnuts, pecans, pine nuts, hazelnuts, hemp seeds
  • nut milk and seed milk
  • unrefined olive oil, coconut oil, avocado oil
  • whole grains
  • honey (optional, no more than a teaspoon per day, not heated)

Despite their benefits, the intermittent fasting and fasting-mimicking diet have some limitations and need special preparation. It is essential to seek guidance from a specialist if you plan to follow either of these dietary approaches.

Remember that a balanced plate is still the fundamental principle of any diet or meal plan. Each meal should contain sources of protein, fat, carbohydrates, fiber, and products of 3-5 different colors. Additionally, staying hydrated is always incredibly important.

Top “anti-aging” products

To decrease your metabolic age, it is crucial to maintain a healthy diet. Certain foods can help you achieve this goal by providing essential nutrients that support your body’s metabolism and overall health.

For example, foods high in antioxidants, like berries and leafy greens, can help reduce inflammation and protect your cells from damage. Foods rich in protein, like lean meats, fish, and legumes, can help preserve muscle mass and boost metabolism. Additionally, foods high in fiber, like whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, can help regulate digestion and prevent insulin spikes contributing to metabolic dysfunction.

Incorporating these foods into your diet and making other healthy lifestyle changes can improve your metabolic age and support optimal health and well-being. We also recommend you pay particular attention to the following products:

  • Blueberries are loaded with antioxidants and vitamins that slow down age-related cell damage in the brain, improving cognitive function and memory.

Blueberries and neuronal aging

  • Tree Nuts, which contain monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids, can reduce the risk of developing cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes.

Association between walnut consumption and diabetes risk in NHANES

  • Figs have pronounced antioxidant properties due to their high flavonoid and polyphenol content, which protects liver and brain cells.
  • Salmon is high in astaxanthin, known for its unique anti-aging properties, and rich in Omgea-3 fatty acids, which help fight inflammation in the body. Salmon
  • Turmeric’s curcumin content can slow down many neurodegenerative processes in the body and acts as a potent anti-inflammatory agent.

Curcumin: A Review of Its Effects on Human Health

While anti-aging foods can be beneficial when consumed alone, their combined consumption is considered the most effective.

Three recipes for longevity

Nut cheese

Ingredients for 4-6 servings:

  • 2 cups walnuts
  • 2-3 tbsp pine nuts
  • 1-2 tbsp flax seeds, soaked overnight in water with 2-3 tbsp of fermented cabbage juice
  • 1/2 cup fermented cabbage juice

Preparation method:

  • It’s better to start cooking in the morning. Rinse and blend soaked nuts and seeds with 2 cups water and 0.5 cups of fermented cabbage (sauerkraut) juice.
  • Strain the mixture through a tight cloth (such as a nut milk bag) and place it in a strainer.
  • Without removing the pulp from the cloth, add salt and garlic. Wrap the cloth to cover the cheese completely, place it in a strainer, and weigh it down (so the cheese does not touch the bowl’s bottom).
  • Leave it at room temperature out of direct sunlight for three days. After three days, the cheese is ready to eat. Serve with crackers or bread.

Blueberry Pudding

Ingredients for 4 servings:

  • 1 cup of coconut milk
  • 1 cup of goat or coconut kefir
  • 3 avocados
  • 1 cup of blueberries
  • 4 tbsp of ground chia seeds
  • 1/2 tsp of sea salt
  • 1 tbsp of vanilla extract
  • 1 drop of peppermint oil extract
  • 1 tbsp of honey

Preparation method:

  • Blend all ingredients in a powerful blender.
  • Chill for at least 30 minutes before serving.

“Golden” milk

Ingredients for 2-3 servings:

  • 1 cup of coconut milk
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1 tbsp of ghee/clarified butter or coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp of honey (optional)
  • 1 tsp of turmeric (powder or grated fresh root)
  • a pinch of black pepper

Preparation method:

  • Pour coconut milk and water into a saucepan and heat for 2 minutes.
  • Add ghee, black pepper, and turmeric, and heat for another 2 minutes.
  • Stir well and pour into glasses. Add honey if desired.