Thursday, January 19, 2017

"Calorie restriction lets monkeys live long and prosper"

Settling a persistent scientific controversy, a long-awaited report shows that restricting calories does indeed help rhesus monkeys live longer, healthier lives.

A remarkable collaboration between two competing research teams — one from the University of Wisconsin–Madison and one from the National Institute on Aging — is the first time the groups worked together to resolve one of the most controversial stories in aging research.

The findings by the collaboration — including Senior Scientist Ricki Colman of the Wisconsin National Primate Research Center and UW–Madison Associate Professor of Medicine Rozalyn Anderson; and NIA Staff Scientist and Nonhuman Primate Core Facility Head Julie Mattison and Senior Investigator and Chief of the Translational Gerontology Branch Rafael de Cabo — were published today (Jan. 17, 2017) in the journal Nature Communications.

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ricpic said...

Health obsession is as sick as any other obsession.

deborah said...

I'll field this one, Sixty. So not only do they want to shove us into teeny houses, we're supposed to starve to save the blankety-blank-blank-blank planet! :)

Eric the Fruit Bat said...

There was a link at the CrossFit website, not too long ago, to a NYT article on a study showing that people on food stamps spend a disproportionate amount of their grocery budget on soda and junk food.

And I was all, like, gee, I sure hope those poor people get to read this article so they'll know they shouldn't be doing that.

News you can use!

Sixty Grit said...

LOL - thanks, deborah, you have learned well!

Synova said...

I don't feel like trying really hard and re-reading it to get the details. Looks like the one group of monkeys didn't show much difference in aging and the Wisconsin ones did. So they compared the control groups that could eat as much as they wanted and the ones with less sugar in their diet ate less *anyway* and therefore lived longer *anyway* which messed up their study.

So was the benefit from having less food that the monkey really wanted, or just less sugar?

At least they included that it's not actually *helpful* to starve your children.

People probably ought to eat less in general though. But lately the fad is to turn that "food pyramid" entirely upside down. Get *most* of your calories directly from fats. Then proteins. Then vegetables, but eat ones that aren't high in sugar. Then, last of all fruits or starches, grains and bread. Which considering how wrong the food pyramid turned out to be, should probably be approached cautiously too.

Then there's vegans, many of whom restart eating meat as a medical prescription when they become suddenly ill after years of feeling good. We're omnivores, not herbivores. And speaking of... what we probably ought to eat a lot more of is stuff like insects, pinky mice, and baby birds.

edutcher said...

Hate to tell you, Ma, but building Potemkin cities was also a waste.

Chip Ahoy said...

Rejecting this information is why you are fat. Thin people, chubs will say "scrawny"people, take it axiom, well f'k'n duh!

Do you eat because you are hungry or because it's time to eat? Do you eat to live or live to eat? Do you stop eating when hunger subsides, assured another meal is just hours away, or do you stop when the plate is cleared, or when you're full, or when you're stuffed to the gills and cannot put another morsel into your pie-hole? Do you even know what hunger feels like? Do you allow that feeling to last?

Think back to when you were a kid and actually starving before lunch and before dinner. If mum would just let me eat a single raw french fry it would stave my starvation, but no, "It'll ruin your dinner." What a bitch. So I starved. Starved I tell you. That sensation actually hurts.

I know people who haven't missed a meal in decades. You see them farting all over town.

<anecdote alert > At a Christmas pot-luck a lot of people brought desserts. They were all arranged beautifully on a table. After clearing my plate I walked up to the table and admired it. Truly beautiful. Deciding was nearly impossible. Everything looked fantastic. Beautiful pies and cakes and custards and icing and decoration and fruits and beautiful colors. Cream cheese pies, and whipped toppings with cherry decorations. I was imagining rubbing it all over my body. I could have stripped and swam across the table rolling over all the deserts. A deep voice pierced the room, PICK ONE, GODDAMNIT!

I looked at the people seated all over the room. The fattest guy had yelled at me. His own plate held eight or so pieces of pie triangles reconstructed into one multicolored multi-textured pie. And that was his second dessert serving. And that followed his two servings meal, two previous plates piled high as mountains are piled. So then, four totally filled plates. Compared to my one plate of selected items that didn't even touch each other on the plate. And I anguished over which dessert to have, not anguish over the idea of not having all of them as he does. And that's why he's fat and always will be and that's why my thinness annoys him. He's an insatiable pig who is never hungry. And I'm satisfied with one delicious thing, and always hungry.
</anecdote alert >

Think back to when people were thin. What were they doing differently? For one, they were more active, and not in a contrived way like spinning. I see people (for whatever reason) without cars pushing their little shopping carts filled with groceries. Guess what. To a person they're all thin. People who walk or bike (for whatever reason) to wherever they go, are thin. You don't see fat people doing this.

I took this report as having nothing to do with them trying to force me to do anything. It's mere observation. Monkeys that eat less live longer. An observation. The monkeys are probably thin too. Nothing at all like those fatass orangutans .That's all. Take it for what it is worth. To fat people, probably worth nothing. To skinny people, confirmation, "yeah, I feel like shit when I'm stuffed."

Synova said...

Some fat people don't eat all that much, though I'm sure the biggest thing for me is lack of exercise like you said. We sit on our butts too much.

But I've got an anecdote too. My boss when I worked at Ross was getting a belly-band or stomach-staple or something in a week or so. I walked into the break room and she'd brought in some fast food thing... two servings, two orders. What? The only person it makes sense to order double is maybe a professional athlete who burns that much a day, or the archetypal farmhand who's active dawn to dusk doing heavy labor and piles his plate up and then finishes all the leftovers. In any case, I'm not judgy, not normally. I don't expect fat people to have a tiny portion when everyone else has a normal meal. But it really just blew me away. Here she was, going to get surgery so she *couldn't* eat more than four tablespoons of anything at one time, and she ordered two whole meals. Why not skip the surgery and just stop doing that?

Rabel said...

Here's how I read the story. In 2009 UW ran a crap study which produced the intended results. In 2012 NIH ran a scientific study, the results of which said the UW study was crap. Today's article glosses over the differences in the two studies because detailing them would have shown that the original UW study was crap and focuses on the newfound, happy, shiny agreement between the two institutions.

But there's good news (if any of this is to be given credit) for Deb and Synova and April and possibly EBL:

"Finally, the team identified key sex differences in the relationship between diet, adiposity (fat), and insulin sensitivity, where females seem to be less vulnerable to adverse effects of adiposity than males."

Have another Twinkie, girls.

ricpic said...

"Do you eat to live or live to eat?"

.....I'm thinking.....I'm thinking.......

What great comedian made that response the key to his comic persona?

Hint: he was already famous before WW II. Second hint: Rochester!

Eric the Fruit Bat said...

or when you're stuffed to the gills and cannot put another morsel into your pie-hole?

I recall the time my brother-in-law made note of some immensely fat guy shoveling it in and said, "Just imagine what the bathroom's like after he's finally done crapping it all out."

Not a very nice thing to say but it did paint quite a picture.

edutcher said...

Jack Benny.

Your money or your life.

These young whippersnappers don't know what's funny.

Methadras said...

Everyone is obsessed with various forms of diets. I've said this before, unless you have some specific dietary issue like celiacs disease or diabetes, then your life and your body are regulated by calories in and calories burned. A net positive of calories means this is unused energy and is stored by the body for later use. Do this enough for a long enough period and you get heavier and fatter.

A catabolic diet seeks to do what this diet does, is eat foods that require more calories to process than the caloric value of the food itself. So for example, if an apple is 45 calories, but it takes 55 calories to process, then your body used up more energy to process. The resulting benefit is weight loss and calorie restriction.

ndspinelli said...

ric, Absolutely. We are obsessed w/ health and many issues. In an obsessive culture the wise words, "Everything in moderation" is like speaking in tongues.

Evi L. Bloggerlady said...

A monkey looks out for his or her health and then a blow dart out of no where and they are being skilled and grilled for dinner...

Evi L. Bloggerlady said...

Methadras, actually it is not just calories in, calories out. While as a thermodynamic rule that is of course true, from a physiological behavioral view, if you throw your blood sugar out of wack with too many processed carbs and sugar, you end up with insulin tolerance, your metabolism out of wack, and a host of other issues (inflamation, etc.) that lead to weight gain.

You are right about catabolic foods, but let's face facts a diet of apples and celery gets old after a while. Except if you are a cow--then it is actually not too bad with plenty of fresh grass mixed in.

The key for you omnivores is to eat a balanced diet, avoid prepackaged processed foods, restrict sugar and pasta, focus on real meats and veggies. If you eat cheese or butter, go for the real stuff.

ricpic said...

"If you eat cheese or butter, go for the real stuff."

I read somewhere recently that blue cheese is actually good for you. I don't pretend to understand the science but apparently there's a chemical in blue cheese that extends or at least has the potential of extending life. There are parts of Italy where gorgonzola is eaten daily and life spans are, on average, longer than for the country as a whole. A win win for a blue cheese lover like me.

William said...

Your metabolism slows down with age. If you wish to stay the same weight, you have to eat 2 or 3% less each year. And we all know the wonders of compounding. The way it works out is that if you wish to keep your weight within normal limits, you have to go hungry on occasion. Life sucks.........I had a pretty good metabolism when younger. I could eat vast quantities of anything and everything and never worry about gaining weight or even suffering indigestion. How red were the roses! I was to gluttony what Charley Sheen was to lust.....All that's over. These are days of salmon and broccoli, and no chocolate chip cookies. Life sucks when you're on a perpetual diet, but it sucks even more if you're overweight. You try to make a sound bargain with life, but you'll never strike a win-win deal.

Eric the Fruit Bat said...

Your metabolism slows down with age.

Part of that is losing muscle. I forget the typical rate of loss (a percent or two per year?) but it can be reversed with regular exercise.

Something to watch out for: Old people have less fat under the skin and more fat around the organs. Your clothes might fit pretty much the same but you are fatter than you look.