Restrict Calories to Live Longer: Studies

A new study published in the journal Nature Aging found that “people of normal weight may be able to extend their life span by restricting calories”.

Daniel Belsky, senior author of the study and an associate professor of epidemiology at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, told CNN “We’ve known for nearly 100 years that calorie restriction can extend healthy life span in a variety of laboratory animals. It does this by changing biology in ways consistent with a slowing of the process of aging, although the specific mechanisms of how this occurs are still under investigation. We decided to drill down to the cellular level in people to see if the same is true.”

Calen Ryan, co-leader of the study and an associate research scientist at the Robert N. Butler Columbia Aging Center at Columbia, told CNN “Our study found evidence that calorie restriction slowed the pace of aging in humans. Our findings are important because they provide evidence from a randomized trial that slowing human aging may be possible.”

While disagreeing to the study’s finding and labeling as “noise”, Dr. Peter Attia, a longevity scientist told CNN, “I just don’t see any evidence that any of the biologic clocks have meaning. The only validation that matters — which to my knowledge has not been done, but hopefully will be — is to see if ‘biologic age’ can predict future life better than chronological age.”

Biological age predictors are reportedly to controversial. Calorie restriction researcher Pankaj Kapahi, a professor at theBuck Institute for Research on Aging in Novato, California, told CNN “At best, they’re telling you something about a very small aspect of aging. For example, grip strength is also a biological age predictor, how active you are is a predictor, and we all know people who fall apart physically but are cognitively all there, so you also need to test cognitive aging. Some researchers are trying to boil it down with bio-aging tests. This is a much more complex problem, and I think it’s an overstatement to say the tests really predict biological age.”

According to CNN article, the calorie studies have been conducted since 1950 and their findings are different.