The study was conducted on monkeys.
It is noted that the experts came to this conclusion after analyzed the results of two studies on monkeys.
The study revealed that caloric restriction prolongs life and reduces the risk of age-related diseases in many animals (e.g. rodents), but it was unclear how it affects the rate of aging of primates, including Homo sapiens.
At the end of 1980-ies was launched two large-scale studies of the impact of low-calorie diet on rhesus monkeys. These monkeys are a model organism for studying the aging process of people, because their genome is 93% identical to the human. In addition, a number of anatomical, physiological, and other biological traits rhesus monkeys are similar to those in Homo sapiens.
One study involving 76 monkeys were conducted at the University of Wisconsin. 121 in the second animal studied by specialists of one of the divisions of the National Institute of aging. The conclusions reached by scientists from the various centers has been inconsistent. Thus, the results of the first study showed that caloric restriction improved the health and extended the life of animals. NIA did not record a statistically significant impact of diet on animals.
Scientists have also conducted additional analysis of the data obtained during both scientific papers to determine the causes of differences in results. It turned out that the studies differed from each other on a number of indicators. For example, the NIA has studied the effects of diet on young animals, although caloric restriction is beneficial for adults and elderly monkeys. Also found were differences in food composition. Thus, rhesus monkeys in the University of Wisconsin were fed food with high sugar content, so animals receiving low calorie, was more thin, than monkeys in the control group.
Given the differences, the researchers concluded that moderate calorie restriction by 30 percent prolongs the life of primates (the average for two years in males and six in females). This reduces the risk of cancer and cardiovascular diseases.
Although studies of the effect of low-calorie foods in humans is not planned, scientists believe that the results of the analysis will help to develop a diet that extends life in humans.
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