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Editor's Blog

Why Caloric Restriction is not on my Menu


http://hplusmagazine.com/2009/11/10/why-caloric-restriction-not-my-menu/


Immortality Seeker? Yes, I am. Epicurean? Ditto. I enjoy flavorgasmic satiety in the foodie
troughs of San Francisco. Daily I ingest about 3,600 oily, spicy calories. Does this make me
corpulent? No! Im 6' 2", 168 lbs, 9.9% body fat, cholesterol 145, BMI (body mass index) 21.6.
My accelerated metabolism keeps me scrawny because I swim, lift weights, and run off an extra
4,000 calories a week. Plus Im vegetarian, supplementing with vitamins, minerals, omega-3, and
resveratrol (the longevity elixir).
See Also
h+ Magazine Current Issue
You Are What You Don't Eat
You can have Sex or Immortality
Live Long & Heavy
Fine shape for a 57-year-old? The doc says yes. The wife responds. Everybody thinks Im
healthy, except...
The CRONies. They say I'm going to die. Before they do. Because I dont follow their diet.
CRONies (those who practice Caloric Restriction with Optimal Nutrition) think theyll thrash
my ass in the race away from the Grim Reaper. I emailed three CRONies with questions, and
now the CRONies (often cold-fingered, skeletal, low libidoed) are giving me (fitness glutton and
hedonist) advice on how to extend my existence. Halt the stamina training, they warn me, stop
pumping iron for an hour, dont run those marathons, and most importantly quit gobbling
your way into the grave! Your high caloric intake is killing you!
What are these CRONies full of? Not much. CRs traditional goal is to reduce calories by 30%;
this was promoted by founder Dr. Roy Walford and is used in most research studies. US
Government RDA is 2,000 calories per day; that means fully-dedicated CRONies nibble through
life on 1,400 per diem I out-eat 2.5 of them! Ha, ha. I enjoy that, but Im annoyed by their
death warnings. CR implies I should lose 13 pounds to get my BMI down to 19.9. GRRRR! I
want to snag longevity by saying yes to endurance aerobics, super sex, tasty antioxidants and
resveratrol. I already said no to meat and ice cream, isnt that enough?

Not for the CRONies. Lisa Walford daughter of Dr. Roy Walford, wife of Brian Delaney
(president of Caloric Restriction Society) and co-author of The Longevity Diet has a BMI
of 15 and she described her breakfast as: four walnuts, six almonds, 10 peanuts. GASP! Wheres
my hash browns, ketchup, bagels, cream cheese, and huevos rancheros? Moderate CRONies
exercise gently and restrict 10-20% of their calories. They slightly annoy me because they weigh
every portion and often eat the same stuff everyday; thats boring and harmless. But emaciated
extremists? The 30% crowd haughty six-footers who weigh under 130 and shirk sweaty
workouts raises my blood pressure.
They say I'm going to die. Before they do. Those who practice Caloric Restriction think theyll
thrash my ass in the race away from Grim Reaper.
Seeking scientific truth, I enter PubMeds database, armed with an obese bowl of guacamole. I
give CR an equal chance by checking out its accomplishments first. Heres the skinny yes,
theres portly data supporting CR benefits to fruit flies, rats, mice, yeast, and rhesus macaques,
but CR does nothing for house flies (except kill them younger). Weird. But lets get species
centric. Caloric Restrictions best advertisement is the human study conducted at Washington
University School of Medicine. CR subjects analyzed here had very low cholesterol, triglyceride,
inflammation, plasma insulin, and plasma glucose concentration levels, plus their blood pressure
resembled a 10-year-old kids and their hearts looked like they belonged to people 17 years
younger. Impressive. Astonishing.


My hand wavers above the 950 calories of guacamole. Drooling but hesitating, suddenly I recall
an email I got from a CRONie in California. He predicts, I expect to die of the flu but not heart
disease, a stroke, liver or lung problems, or cancer. Flu? Hmm.... I quickly find six studies
describing CR lab animals that lacked sufficient energy to fight off parasites, bacteria, viruses.
Thats why my CRONie sees influenza waving him in with a feverish finger. A Drexel
University abstract noted that underweight mice were more susceptible to influenza; this
correlates with UC Irvine research that indicates being underweight is a dangerous condition in
the elderly. Will CRONie health stumble past 80? Very few CR practitioners have entered
advanced years yet so we dont have that answer, but we do know that the longevity champ was
a high-calorie junky. The favorite foodstuffs of Jean Calment 122 year old Frenchwoman
were olive oil (1909 calories per cup), port wine (240 per cup) and chocolate (4,500 calories per
kilogram, her weekly intake).
The CR Society website is upfront about many of
their diets negative side-effects (hunger, reduced
energy, menstrual irregularity, infertility, and loss
of strength, stamina and testosterone) but what
about general bitchiness? Im a shit when Im
starving. Back at PubMed I dig up an abstract
from Boston noting that the suicide rate of men
goes up when their BMI dips below 21. Yikes!
CRON ambition is 20 or less. UCLA molecular
biologist Dr. Jay Phelan admitted to interviewers
that the starving rodents in his CR study didn't
like it... they bit people... and had an unpleasant
demeanor. Id be one of those rats. Cut me down
to 1,400 calories per day and Id chew everyones head off.
Are CR people insane? Anorexic? No, they just gobble whole hog the simplistic maxim Eat
Less, Live Longer. Everyone knows curbing calories can promote life extension, but CRONs
30% ideal is extreme. Okinawans garner long life spans partly because they push their plates
away when their tummy is 80% full. Ray Kurzweil and Dr. Terry Grossman advise a 10-20%
reduction on their websites free health program. An 36-year study of 1,915 male Hawaiians
titled How Much Should We Eat? determined that a 15% reduction is ideal. Healthy facts are
easy to find, but CR maintains its severe abstention because it worships supportive data, but
rejects dissenting studies. Sandy Szwarc agrees; she opines that the promotion of caloric
restriction is rife with poor science and considering only half the story. (See Resources)
I believe CRONs benefits are vastly due to the first 20% caloric reduction; the additional 10%
they forgo is mostly risky affectation. To complicate the equation, recent studies indicate that
methionine (an amino acid) is also a factor. Rodents on methionine restriction (MR) extend their
lives by 40% even if they eat a normal quota of calories. Many scientists now speculate that
CRs success is largely due to methionine reduction in CRs wide net of denial. MR is more
appealing than CR to anyone who wants to stuff their stomach, especially vegans who have
already renounced high-meth animal products. Personally, I switched from flatulent chickpeas to
equally-gaseous lentils, because the latter legume
contains only 1/3 as much methionine.
What about CRONs taboo against calorie-
burning stamina exercise? Glad you asked.
CRONs attitude on this issue is narrow-minded,
philosophically flabby, and medically wrong.
Numerous studies prove that heart-pumping,
sweaty oldsters are behaving appropriately.
Check out the Danish study Joggers Live
Longer, or Leiden Universitys 32-year research of 2,259 ice-skating Dutchmen, or the Harvard
Alumni Health Study of 13,485 men entitled Associations of light, moderate, and vigorous
intensity physical activity with longevity. Extremely active elderly outlive moderate and light
workout aged every time. CRONs approach avoiding high caloric expenditure because well
need to replace the calories is timid and unjustifiable.
Will CRs 30% regimen ever become widely popular? A Pied Piper attracting gaunt masses? No,
and heres why:
Reason #1: CRs 30% is not sexy, and Eros trumps Thanatos. Our cultures lust is aimed at
round rumps, succulent curves, meaty bosoms in both genders. Nobody googles to get off on
CR practitioners naked. There arent any thumbnails anyway, or YouTube videos of bikinied
CRONies dancing to Ballad of a Thin Man.
Reason #2: CR is family-unfriendly. If children were placed on the regimen their growth would
be stunted 50% and their parents jailed. (CR Society requires members to be at least 21 years
old.) CR kids would rarely be conceived, anyway, because CR women are often infertile and
both parents can have weak libidos.
Reason #3: CR doesnt offer enough gain for the pain.
CRONies hope to extend their lives 15-25% from the day
they begin, but most scientists view this as wildly
optimistic. Dr. Phelan suggests longevity might increase
by 2%. National Institutes of Health (NIH) admits we
think we will never know for sure. Transhumanist
Aubrey de Grey wrote an essay subtitled Why Human
Caloric Restriction or Its Emulation May Only Extend
Life Expectancy by 2-3 years. I did the math lets
assume I get 25 more years. Should I avoid dinner
parties, gourmand potlucks, and restaurant feasts, to eat at
home with a gram scale and CRON-O-Meter as my only
dining companions? With the benefit being the possible
promise of continuing this excitement for an extra...
hmm... 2% of Phelans estimate of 25 years... six
months?!
Reason #4: Tasty Options! I toss two grape-flavored
resveratrol pills onto my tongue. One CRONie conceded
that resveratrol offers half the benefits of CR. So that retrieves me 3 months. Maybe low-meth
lentils will give me back the other 3 months. All caught up!
Maybe a better pharmaceutical will appear, like Rapamycin. Maybe artificial stomachs will be
available in a decade. Maybe nanotech or the Singularity will save us. Meanwhile, Im hungry.
Do I want Belgian waffles with whipped cream and blueberries? Chile rellenos drenched in mole
sauce? Ill jog it off later on the waterfront trail to the Golden Gate Bridge. Burping, Ill think
about Andre Bretons quote, Beauty will be convulsive, or will not be at all.
See Also
h+ Magazine Current Issue
You Are What You Don't Eat
You can have Sex or Immortality
Live Long & Heavy
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26 Comments
Submitted by Matthew lake on November 13, 2009 at 3:06 pm.
Hank Hyena.... that 36 year old study showed that each group, despite their variation in
calorie intake... all had a BMI of around 25... the study was rubbish.
Phelan, de grey, or any other scientists do NOT have any hard data showing that CR
won't work in humans. You're quote these 2-3% gain in lifespan but it comes from
theories of why CR won't work... not actual evidence. The evidence is that CR is superior
to exercise in eliminating risks of disease.
Calorie Restriction also slows aging of the immune system, so at 80 a CRer wouldn't
have the immunity of an 80 year old. Get it? I started calorie restriction from age 18 and
I'm now 25. Maybe you can check out my blog and learn something
o Reply
Submitted by Hank Hyena on November 14, 2009 at 1:53 pm.
Hi Matthew -- I checked out your blog, I like your garden, your favorite books
and that you exercise regularly, but you might not have all the answers at age 25 -
- your plan to "study aging" is great, maybe you can read CR skeptics with an
open mind as you do that.
Reply
Submitted by Susan on November 13, 2009 at 3:39 pm.
Hank Hyena, keepin' it real! I agree with you. It is important to question these fads, the
key words you used describing their motto as a "simplistic maxim" is right on and a red
flag for anyone well-read. The regimen described in CR is dangerously reminiscent of
anorexia symptoms, as another responder pointed out here. Besides, what good is a long
life without quality--good food in moderation, a healthy sex drive, and plenty of energy.
Thanks H+ for another good article.
o Reply
Submitted by Matthew lake on November 15, 2009 at 11:06 am.
Calorie restriction a fad? Oh come on! It has the most evidence to back it up out
of any 'anti aging' lifestyle out there! Nothing works as well as CR... and
resveratrol, you're wasting your money because it failed in a recent study to
extend the lifespan of normal healthy mice. Anorexia symptoms you say, but I
have no idea what you're talking about. I feel perfectly healthy, and so do many
other people on CR. You also say about quality of life, what if I were to tell you
that I cured my severe hay fever allergy so now that I can go out all summer, is
this not an improvement in my quality of life? What if I say that I rarely get sick
any more... my hearing, eye sight, smell, sleep, my concentration and memory
have all improved after CR... is this not 'improved quality of life'? Being healthy
dertimes the quality of life you have, and CR gives you this for longer and less
time being ill at the end of life. I also still have a sex drive, it's not like its non
existant at my age.
Reply
Submitted by T Herbert on November 18, 2009 at 11:12 am.
Interesting article.
Do you think they should relabel their efforts as Reduce excess calories. I mean if one
uses those C's, as you do, what's the beef?
Cheers
o Reply
Submitted by Melissa on November 28, 2009 at 9:47 pm.
I agree with you that a lot of CRONies seem to take a good thing to an extreme. I am
absolutely convinced just by my own experience that eating less than your capacity is a
beneficial practice, with immediate benefits. My stomach will tell me when I need to stop
eating, and if my tastebuds override that, I'm guaranteed to feel like a bloated, dull-witted
slug forthwith. I've tried to shrug off the slug with frantic exercise afterward, with only
limited success. The lingering effects of gobbling are just too powerful. I'm very
surprised that works for you.
But yeah, exercising lightly will never give you the glorious feelings that intense exercise
does. If I want to feel reborn for a while, I know I'm going to have to run some sprints or
ride a bike up some devilish hills or something along those lines...walking is nice and
helpful, but it won't make your lungs feel like they've just learned how to really breathe,
like the gasp-inducing stuff does. I'm soooo grateful for vigorous exercise. Even if they
were right, living longer but less alive...nah. Though restricting calories CAN be
euphoric, as has been mentioned. I just doubt the euphoria lasts as long as an exercise
high.
I have a theory that people who restrict 30 or more percent have compromised immune
systems because they lack zinc. Since zinc is most abundant and bioavailable in meats
and eggs, and that stuff is kept to a minimum by CRON practitioners due to its high
calorie content (and probably for other reasons), they're probably deficient in it...and the
deficiency will only get worse over time. Hence the susceptibility to viruses. I know
you're a vegetarian, so you might disagree with my reasoning, but I myself have suffered
a zinc deficiency after years of being primarily vegetarian. I was prone to sickness and
infections for all those years, and a host of other symptoms associated with zinc
deficiency. I even tried supplementing with zinc and saw no improvement...until I started
eating animals. It's been hard to do that because I just don't really like meat. I sometimes
find it downright repulsive...but I'm determined to keep it in my diet, because the slow
but steady progress in my condition has been so undeniable.
One other thing I'm curious about...do you actually feel good after a marathon? That kind
of thing seems like another unhealthy extreme, like cutting calories too drastically, or
exercising too lightly. I know for damn sure I wouldn't feel good after one.
o Reply
Submitted by Jenna on August 11, 2010 at 4:02 am.
I think when one becomes over excessively concerned and aware of their calorie intake
they are adversely harming their health. There is a need for all kinds of food to produce
different types of benefits and elements required to distribute energy. When you won't
have adequate carbs how are you suppose to stay strong and energetic even though carbs
have the most calories. I am not in favor of such precise recordings and maintenance.
Weight Loss Boot Camp
o Reply
Submitted by Anonymous on August 24, 2010 at 10:20 pm.
Athlete and dancer here who looks much younger that my bio-age...
I 100% agree CR pple are nutjobs (and ugly-looking as hell)...the better study would be:
how many days on CR does it take for mice to permanently lose sex drive?
But I think Vegetarians are nutjobs as well sorry...
I'm not from Amerikkka, originally, and where I'm from people lived over 100 and
worked in fields to the last day; they ate meats and milk products all their lives. Vegans,
vegetarians, CRs... it's all from the same mental crowd for me, American granola hippies
who know nothing about life.
o Reply
Submitted by Anonymous on August 24, 2010 at 10:28 pm.
PS: vegetarian marathon runners usually don't sport any attractive bodies, no muscles or
anything to look at in general. Just a thought. Those muscles just shrink away together
with testosterone levels... :[[ Must be a sad feeling.
o Reply
Submitted by Sam on November 5, 2010 at 12:14 pm.
I completely agree with you. I hate people who tell me to restrict my calories and eat
"healthy" foods low in fat and sugar. It's been proven now that low fat foods are not
necessarily healthy and its ok to have natural foods, the way nature intended them to be
(yes that includes whole milk as well), as long as you burn those calories off. weight loss
boot camp
o Reply
Submitted by Anonymous on November 19, 2010 at 1:42 pm.
Curious about what's made you so bitter about the CR crowd. They're not particularly
aggressive about proselytizing. So eat whatever you want, who gives a shit?
Your review, such as it is, of the data supporting longevity resulting from CR is cherry-
picked garbage. Chocolate-eating Frenchwomen do not make for a compelling argument
against the basic findings, which have been confirmed many times over in mice, worms,
monkeys, rats, cats, dogs....of course we don't have data from humans on longevity, for
the obvious reason that we haven't conducted studies for long enough. .... I was going to
go on about the various logical problems in this article but I see that the author has
descended to challenging commenters to compare BMIs.
My guess is that some (much?) of this was meant to be satire - ie, funny, but it's just
dumb. 1500+ words of dumb.
o Reply
Submitted by Puma BearClan on January 11, 2013 at 2:29 pm.
Hello, I am a CRON practitioner. Your points are very well made. However, I would like
to offer my own perspective for your readers. I have been eating a primal/paleo low-carb
diet for over 10 years and for the past 5-7 years I have reduced calories to a CRON level.
I agree with many of your points, and I differ significantly from most CRON
practitioners because I do not eat many vegetables at all. My diet is very high in fat and
relatively high in protein. This is considered a "no no" in standard CRON, which is a
plant-based diet. I agree that many of the points you make are accurate for a plant-based
diet but not for a diet like mine that is based on animal fat.
I have meticulously tracked my diet and still check it if I make changes. I am exceeding
the US RDA in all nutrients. Obviously I do not meet recommendations for fiber and
calories and I exceed recommendations for fat and protein.
My diet has all the benefits of low-carb metabolism with no insulin-related hunger
cravings but since I also dropped calories to about 1500 per day I feel mildly hungry right
before dinner but not unwell or ravenous. I'm in excellent health, much improved since I
made the 2 changes in diet.
Regarding children: It's my belief that people don't understand the weaning process and
fail to wean into adulthood. Milk is high in fat and sugar. Weaning foods in traditional
cultures are animal body fats and high-fat organs. Then some plant foods and muscle
meats are introduced. In other words, a child should be weaned away from a high-
carbohydrate diet onto a low-carb high fat diet. The fact that most modern diets are
carbohydrate-based shows that rather than weaning, children are being given a substitute
for the milk sugars (cereal, yogurt, and refined sugar). I think that the sugar dependency
and inability to wean hampers development. Also, eventually, a child (should) consume
less food through the weaning process, and into old age a person should continue to
consume less. It seems obvious to me that babies, children, and young adults should be
consuming different types and quantities of food from adults. The most family friendly
diet of all is that which meets the needs of each of its members, not the one that provides
a median of quality and quantity - that plan of eating is only possible with mass-produced
food or grains, which should be avoided, to my opinion.
Best wishes
Puma
o Reply
Submitted by Joe on November 11, 2009 at 1:21 pm.
If God had wanted us to restrict our caloric intake she wouldn't have made so many great
things to eat.
o Reply
Submitted by Reason on November 11, 2009 at 2:40 pm.
An unusually trollish article for h+. You're slipping.
In general, this sort of obvious nonsense really doesn't need refuting; I'd just point people
to any of the literature on calorie restriction, or the results of past and ongoing human
studies. Uncertainty over any significant extension of life span in humans is right out in
the open, as are the tremendous benefits to health produced in human volunteers - far
greater than can be attained with any presently available medical technology.
The author here can cherry-pick studies (e.g. comments on BMI, resistance to infection -
there are any number of studies demonstrating CR to greatly improve immune system
function), set up straw men (e.g. the ridiculous comments on CR practitioners not
exercising), and call people names until the cows come home, but all that really
accomplishes is to make him look like a fool.
o Reply
Submitted by Hank Hyena on November 11, 2009 at 8:48 pm.
HI -- I am the author, I'd like to respond to your comments but I'm not sure what your
point is. What is your opinion about caloric restriction, and why? Let me know what you
believe so I can discuss it with you.
o Reply
Submitted by Anonymous on November 11, 2009 at 10:17 pm.
What is obvious nonsense to you can be an intriguing idea to others. Just sayin'....
o Reply
Submitted by Hank Hyena on November 12, 2009 at 6:52 am.
to Reason -- hi, this is the author again. My article is supportive of calorie restriction up
to 15-20%, but NOT PAST THAT. I state that I believe in the research conclusions of a
36-year study in Hawaii of 1,915 men that praised the benefits of calorie restriction up to
15%.
My article also supports Ray Kurzweil and Terry Grossman's advice on their website,
which comes from their book, Transcend, that recommends calorie restriction of 10-20%,
but cautions CR past that -- here is a quote from their book (p. 346) that I agree with: "a
bit of caution is advised... there are limits to how far calories can be reduced before the
effect becomes life-limiting. Cutting too deep can cause deficiencies in crucial vitamins,
minerals, proteins, essential fats, and other nutrients, which can lead to illness and even
death." So - Reason - if you call me a "fool" because I disagree with you - are you also
calling Kurzweil a fool?
I am not "cherry-picking" studies when I refer to a "Harvard Alumni Health Study of
13,485 men", or "Leiden University's 32-year research of 2,259 Dutch" -- that is
meticulous research from esteemed learning centers -- and I'd like to know what studies
you are referring to when you claim CR benefits are well-documented. I did mention, and
complement, the Washington University study that touted CR benefits. I am happy to
look at any research you can show me that supports Human CR past 20%.
Regarding "exercise" - I interviewed three CR practitioners, all "well-known" as leaders
of CR organizations, writers of CR info, or they've been interviewed by the press before.
I did not state their names because my conclusion is very critical, and I decided that
they'd prefer to not have their names attached. Anyway, I told them I ran marathons and
they said I shouldn't do that because it accelerates metabolism and increases hunger. One
CR man said he used to exercise a lot, but now that he's doing CR, he limits himself to a
weekly game of doubles tennis. I know CR practitioners do some strength-conditioning
(not very aerobic) and yoga (ditto) and maybe some brief treadmill work, but they
certainly aren't racing Half-Marathons on weekends. If you know any CR endurance
runners or swimmers or mountain climbers or any CR athletes at all, let them contact me.
What I saw was this - CR believes in light or very moderate exercise, but not Vigorous
Exercise, and the most up-to-date studies indicate that Vigorous Exercise, at any age, is
good for your health. CR's avoidance of Vigorous Exercise is unhealthy advice, and you
personally should not follow it.
I stated my own stats in the article: 57 years old, 168 pounds, 6' 2", etc. I am in the Ideal
Weight range that is posted in Kurzweil's book on p. 340. What about you, Reason? How
skinny are you? I hope you are eating enough and getting some exercise, and following a
healthy life plan.
o Reply
Submitted by Dave F on November 12, 2009 at 7:46 am.
Great article!
-D
o Reply
Submitted by Athena Andreadis on November 12, 2009 at 8:28 am.
I wrote a companion piece to this article on H+ magazine that is listed in the resources:
You Can Have Either Sex or Immortality
http://hplusmagazine.com/articles/forever-young/eldorado-desperadoes-ii
However, rapamycin is not the answer either, by a very long shot. It's poison -- it
basically knocks out your immune system, especially at amounts equivalent to those fed
to mice. And what works on mice very often does work on (or actively harms) humans.
More on this here:
Eldorado Desperadoes I: Of Mice and Men
http://www.starshipreckless.com/blog/?p=578
Finally, the extrapolation calculations which show that CR will extend human life by
only 2-3 years at most don't originate from de Grey but from Jay Phelan of UCLA.
o Reply
Submitted by Anonymous on November 12, 2009 at 10:24 am.
Great article. I've read that exercise, while ostensibly it creates more free radicals due to
increased metabolism, actually causes the body to ramp up its free radical buffer system
to dispose of them. There may even be a net benefit of free radical absorption.
o Reply
Submitted by Anonymous on November 12, 2009 at 10:25 am.
Great article. I've read that exercise, while ostensibly it creates more free radicals due to
increased metabolism, actually causes the body to ramp up its free radical buffer system
to dispose of them. There may even be a net benefit of free radical absorption.
o Reply
Submitted by Anonymous on November 12, 2009 at 12:52 pm.
I've always wondered what was wrong with the CRONies' logic. Obviously quality of life
matters as well as quantity. Thanks for the insightful and witty overview of why a healthy
diet WON'T kill us!!
o Reply
Submitted by Hank Hyena on November 12, 2009 at 1:06 pm.
Thanks for your comments, Anonymous. There's new research on this topic -- I just
found something on PubMed I'd like you to read and I hope "Reason" reads it, too. The
info below is 3 weeks old; the final sentence upholds my argument:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19851100?itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.
Pubmed_ResultsPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum&ordinalpos=3
2009 Oct 21.
Antiaging, longevity and calorie restriction.
Morley JE, Chahla E, Al-Kaade S.
aGRECC, VA Medical Center, USA bDivision of Geriatric Medicine, Saint Louis
University School of Medicine, St. Louis, Missouri, USA.
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: The role of calorie restriction in humans is controversial.
Recently, new data in monkeys and humans have provided new insights into the potential
role of calorie restriction in longevity. RECENT FINDINGS: A study in rhesus monkeys
showed a reduction in aging-associated mortality. A number of controlled studies have
suggested a variety of beneficial effects during studies of 6-12 months in humans. Major
negative effects in humans were loss of muscle mass, muscle strength and loss of bone.
SUMMARY: Dietary restriction in rodents has not been shown to be effective when
started in older rodents. Weight loss in humans over 60 years of age is associated with
increased mortality, hip fracture and increased institutionalization. Calorie restriction in
older persons should be considered experimental and potentially dangerous. Exercise at
present appears to be a preferable treatment for older persons.
PMID: 19851100 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]
o Reply
Submitted by Carol LeMaitre on November 12, 2009 at 6:37 pm.
Hey there is another name for this and it is anorexia. Obsessing about portions, weighing
food, low libido it's all there. I have a family member who has been into Calorie
Restriction for years and let me tell you, it's not pretty. She has the bones of an 80 year
old, falls asleep sitting up, doesn't think clearly and can't relax and socialize. There are
just waaay too many things in the world that need attention and bring joy without
spending all of ones time and attention obsessing about food.
o Reply
Submitted by sco on November 13, 2009 at 2:40 pm.
I agree that there is not enough evidence supporting CR in humans. Anyway we should
find what is producing the positive effects in mice and try to reproduce the actual
chemistry without the negatives. I think we should spend a lot more on aging research
than we are doing right now.
Why do you support 10-15% CR if you don't apply it?
I think you diet is not healthy (cream cheese?).
o Reply
Submitted by Hank Hyena on November 13, 2009 at 3:23 pm.
Hi Sco -- most Americans eat too way many calories and they should cut back 10-15% --
I agree with that. I am personally lucky to have a very high metabolism (or maybe it is
intestinal worms?!) so I never seem to gain weight no matter how much I eat. I am 6'2"
and I've never weighed more than 180. But I really don't eat a lot of fatty food, I avoid ice
cream and butter for example, and meat (except fish). But thanks for worrying about me
and the cream cheese, although I think I said it was "whipped cream" on my Belgian
waffle
o Reply
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