Fewer calories spell longer life, protection from diabetes

November 1st, 2011 - 3:54 pm ICT by IANS  

London, Nov 1 (IANS) Consuming fewer calories can benefit you in a number of ways — it can slow down ageing and keep at bay cancer and type 2 diabetes that it brings in its wake.

The earlier the calorie intake is reduced, the greater the effect. Researchers have now identified one of the enzymes that hold the key to the ageing process.

“We are able to show that caloric restriction slows down ageing by preventing an enzyme, peroxiredoxin, from being inactivated,” says Mikael Molin, head of department of cell and molecular biology, University of Gothenburg, Sweden, who led the study.

“This enzyme is also extremely important in counteracting damage to our genetic material,” adds Molin, the journal Molecular Cell reports.

By cutting down on sugar and proteins gradually, without reducing vitamins and minerals, researchers have previously shown that monkeys can live several years longer than expected, according to a Gothenburg statement.

The method has also been tested on everything from fishes and rats to fungi, flies and yeasts with favourable results. Caloric restriction also has favourable effects on our health and delays the development of age-related diseases.

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