Posted on Sep 20, 2018, 2 a.m.
Georgia State University researchers have revealed potential anti-aging effects of fasting and calorie restriction on the vascular system; the team discovered a ketone molecule produced during times of low food intake that slows down cellular aging of the vascular system.
Links between calorie restriction, fasting, and aging according to the team have not been investigated sufficiently, but early research into potential links has indicated eating less has potentially favorable results for aging slowly. According to the researchers this study serves to add to growing body of evidence, finding that fasting or eating less for periods of time results in production of the molecule β-Hydroxybutyrate which is a ketone group produced by the liver.
The liver produces β-Hydroxybutyrate molecules when a person engages in long period of intense exercise or low food consumption, diets restricting carbohydrates, and during starvation. The compound delays vascular aging through endothelial cells that line the interior surface of blood vessels and lymphatic vessels, and can prevent senescence/cellular aging.
It stands to reason that overeating may have the opposite effect and β-Hydroxybutyrate could become suppressed during times of excessive food consumption and possibly result in increased rates of aging.
β-Hydroxybutyrate binds to a type of RNA binding protein, when this happens activity of Octamer binding transcriptional factor 4 stem cell factor increases to help protect against cellular aging that results from DNA damage, which in turn helps to keep blood vessels younger and functioning better.
Trying to convince the population to regularly engage in fasting or calorie restriction is proving to be difficult. Investigations are underway to determine if there is a chemical that is capable to mimic anti-aging effects of decreased food consumption to help reduce cardiovascular disease and Alzheimer’s disease. Should something be found which can successfully mimic these effects and allows people to continue to eat, life would be more enjoyable while helping to fight off disease.
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