Reduced Calorie Intake Diet also showed to maintain Physical Fitness and Lean Muscle Mass as Well as Prolong Life
[Best Syndication] Researchers found that rats that had restricted calories in their diet not only lived longer, but were able to maintain physical fitness as they aged. The researchers suggest that the reason for the preservation of mobility was due to the reduction of visceral fat which promotes inflammation and a host of diseases that can cause physical disabilities. The study first appeared in the October issue of Journals of Gerontology Series A: Biological Sciences and Medical Sciences.
The researchers point out that this is the first study that links a low calorie diet with a reduction in the amount of visceral fat and at the same time they maintained lean muscle mass. One problem with aging is the progression of loss of lean muscle mass and the increase of fat stores.
The researchers studied male rats at three age groups of 18, 24, and 29 months. In human years these rats would be ranging in age from 50 – 70 years of age. The researchers either fed the rats a regular calorie diet or a 40 percent reduced calorie diet from the time they were born. They were all assessed on their body mass for their lean muscle mass as well as their body fat mass. They were calculated for a ratio of the amount of body fat to the amount of lean body mass. The researchers also determined the amount of visceral fat was present along with the pro-inflammatory cytokines and C-reactive protein, which is also related to inflammation.
The rats that were on the restricted calorie diet were better at the physical performance skills when compared to the rats fed a normal diet. In addition to this the calorie restricted rats had less fat and they had a lower fat-to-lean body mass ratio than the regular fed rats. The pro-inflammatory cytokines and C-reactive protein were also secreted less than the normal fed rats.
The researchers say that is would be extremely difficult to restrict human diets to this level. They estimate that average women would typically eat 2,000 calories a day would need to eat 1,200 calories and an average man would regularly eat 2,500 calories a day would need to eat 1,500 calories. This would be the equivalent of a 40 percent reduction in calories.
The researchers do not believe that it would be possible for a human to maintain a 40 percent reduction in calorie diet. While short periods of time it could be accomplished with much effort they suggest it would be almost impossible to do over a lifetime. They also warn that beginning a reduced calorie diet in your senior years could be harmful to your health.
The researchers suggest that it would be better to reduce your calorie intake by 8 percent instead of the 40 percent. An 8 percent reduction is more plausible for humans to do over a long time. There are other studies that suggest that even a slight reduction of 8 percent will be positive in reducing inflammation response.
If you are an average women eating a regular calorie consumption of 2,000 it would be 1,840 if your reduced your calories by 8 percent. If you are an average man with a regular calorie intake of 2,500 a day you would reduce your daily calories to 2,300.
By Mark Barone
Best Syndication News Health Writer