CALORIE RESTRICTION: CHANGE THE RISK OF DISEASES RELATED TO THE AGE
The results of a long one 2-year study on the effects of calorie restriction have produced interesting results.
The study looked at the effects of calorie restriction on men and women, young and healthy normal-weight, middle-aged and moderately overweight. Participants were given the goals of weight loss of 15.5% in the first year, followed by stable weight during the second year. The weight loss goal would have to be achieved by reducing the calorie intake of 25%. In fact, the group reported a caloric restriction substantially lower (12%); However, calorie restriction was maintained for the whole period of 2 years. To participants in the control group it was asked to maintain their normal diet during the study. The study was designed to test the effects of caloric restriction on the resting metabolic rate and body temperature.
The results showed that calorie restriction has had a temporary effect on the resting metabolic rate, while no effect on body temperature was observed.
However, the results showed that calorie restriction has changed some risk factors for age-related diseases and indicators are associated with a longer lifespan. Caloric restriction lowered significantly different cardiovascular risk factors compared to the control group: mean arterial pressure decreased by 4%, total cholesterol fell by 6%, the HDL cholesterol levels increased, the levels of protein C reactive, inflammatory marker, were down 47%. Caloric restriction has also decreased insulin resistance, an indicator of the risk of diabetes. Finally, T3 levels, a marker of activity of the thyroid hormone, fell by over 20% in the group with calorie restriction. This finding is of particular interest since some studies suggest that lower thyroid activity may be associated with a longer duration of life.
"The results are interesting: they show that long-term calorie restriction may influence the risk factors of disease and possible predictors of longevity in healthy people," said Evan Hadley, MD, director of the National Institute on Aging Division of Geriatrics and Gerontology Clinic and an author of the study. "It would also be useful to find out whether calorie restriction for longer periods has additional effects of health in old age, and to compare its effects with those of exercise-induced weight loss."