Calorie-restriction late in life

by Christina on February 9, 2010

This study on calorie restriction just came out (full text here).

It caught my attention because it demonstrates health benefits of short-term calorie restriction late in life, indicating that it may never be too late to reverse lifelong damage done.

The researchers found that older mice fed a calorie-restricted diet (30% of normal) for 8-weeks had an increase in nitric oxide production, and improvement in vascular endothelial function. Nitric oxide plays a key role in vessel dilation (which is impaired in older people, leading to cardiovascular disease). The calorie-restricted mice also had reduced oxidative stress through decreased superoxide production and increased anti-oxidant enzyme activity.

The study did not find changes in inflammation levels, unlike the findings in long-term calorie restriction studies such as this one.

Some of my questions: This study was done in mice — does it apply to humans? 8-weeks in a mouse life is equivalent to how long in a human life? What would similar “calorie-restriction” look like for humans? Does it matter what type of food is consumed, or just the calorie-restriction?

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Anonymous February 9, 2010 at 8:19 pm

whyy.org radio times Feb 8th hour 2
goes over this area quite well, an interesting listen…

http://whyy.org/cms/radiotimes/2010/02/08/eternity-soup/

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