A “much more powerful” diet than drugs in the prevention of aging and metabolic disorders: research

A new study found that the composition of our diet has a much stronger effect on aging and metabolic health than drugs.

Preclinical study According to the Charles Perkins Center at the University of Sydney, nutrition, including the balance of overall calories and key nutrients, better protects the body from the risks of aging, obesity, heart disease, immune dysfunction, and metabolic disorders than anti-aging drugs. It is suggested that it can be done.

Therefore, maintaining a healthy diet may be more effective than medication because it keeps away conditions such as diabetes, stroke, and heart disease.

“Diet is a powerful drug,” said Professor Stephen Simpson, senior author and academic director at the Charles Perkins Center.

“But now, consider whether and how drugs interact with dietary composition, even if they are designed to act on the same nutrient signaling pathways, much like diet. It is administered without. “

Studies conducted in mice show that drugs commonly used to treat diabetes and delay aging, such as metformin, rapamycin, and resveratrol, can also target the same biochemical pathways as nutrients. Was shown. However, they weakened the cells’ metabolic response to the diet.

“We have found that dietary composition has a much stronger effect than drugs, which significantly weakens the response to the diet, rather than changing the shape of the diet.” Simpson said.

“Given that humans share essentially the same nutrient signaling pathways as mice, studies have shown that people eat to improve metabolic health rather than taking the drugs we studied. It suggests that you will get better value from changing. “

Researchers have observed that the balance between dietary caloric intake and key nutrients (protein, fat, carbohydrates) is closely associated with the liver, an important organ in the regulation of metabolism.

On the other hand, protein and total caloric intake had a particularly strong effect not only on metabolic pathways, but also on the basic processes that control cell function.

For example, the amount of protein eaten affected the activity of mitochondria, which are part of the cells that produce energy.

This is because the amount of protein and dietary energy that can be eaten affects how accurately a cell converts a gene into the various proteins needed to help the cell function properly and make new cells. Produces a downstream effect.

These two basic processes are associated with aging.

Professor David Couture, lead author of the Charles Perkins Center and the School of Medicine and Health, said this result is another puzzle in the current understanding of the mechanism that connects “what we eat” with “our age.” He said he added a piece.

“We all know that what we eat affects our health, but this study dramatically affects many of the processes by which food works in our cells. I’ve shown you how you can do this, which gives you insight into how diet affects your health and aging, “he said.

Team studies have previously shown a protective role in diet and specific combinations of proteins, fats and carbohydrates against the risk of metabolic disorders such as aging, obesity, heart disease, immune dysfunction, and diabetes. ..

The findings were published in Cell Metabolism.

Nina Nguyen


Nina Nguyen is a Sydney-based Vietnamese reporter with a focus on Australian news. Contact her at [email protected]