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Can restricting calories slow the aging process?

Sharine Forbes
Geriatric Medicine

Calorie restricting (CR) has been proven to protect a cell against damage, as it reduces the amount of energy absorbed and causes an optimization of the metabolic processes and therefore influences that genetic makeup of a cell. Accordingly, CR can help aid in the increase of growth hormones, while simultaneously reducing insulin and cortisol levels, as well as altering the modification of genes associated with aging. 

Mark C. Houston, MD
Internal Medicine
Caloric restriction as been shown to increase the life span in primates and rodents by 40% or more. One would need to reduce total caloric intake by 30-40%. Caloric restriction with a diminished energy intake forces an optimization of the metabolism and may alter the entire genetic program. It reduces cellular damage and disrupts certain hormonal levels. One practical method is to fast for 12 hours after 5 p.m. each day for 3 to 4 days per week. This achieves caloric restriction and increases growth hormone, male and female sex hormones, but reduces insulin and cortisol levels and may alter calorie-induced modification of aging genes.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.