London: 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
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.