It has been researched and discussed for a long time whether reducing calorie intake can actually increase the lifespan of a variety of species. It has been proven and tested that lifespans of yeast, fish and dogs are shown to increase the maximum lifespan of these species. New research has found the beyond just increasing lifespan it has been proven that caloric restriction also keeps the brain young and better functioning.
The study was performed at the Catholic University of Sacred Heart in Rome. A molecule was discovered in this calorie restriction study called CREB1 which is only produced during a period of caloric restriction in mice. The CREB1 gene is linked to longetivy and efficient processing of neurons. The study will be published in an issue of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).
The idea really isn’t to convince everyone to eat less and improve the youth of their brain but to develop drugs and pharmaceuticals that turn on the CREB1 gene that is produced from reduced calorie intake. In an Interview the head researcher Giovambattista Pain said, “”Our hope is to find a way to activate CREB1, for example through new drugs, so to keep the brain young without the need of a strict diet.”
As people age they have less activity of the CREB1 molecule and this can slow down turning on of other molecules that are linked to longevity. These molecules are called “sirtuins” and workw tih CREB1 to help anxiety levels, learning functions in the brain and memory.
So you may being thinking what would you have to do to reach these levels of low calorie intake to see benefits? It’s not exactly recommended someone live this way although there are groups of people that do live this way in India. Caloric restriction is essentially taking your typical suggested daily diet and reducing it up to 30% to a point where you’re consuming up to 70% of your original calorie intake. Mice that have went through this process have shown to be less aggressive, have better memory, better cognitive functions and don’t develop diseases like diabetes. This is a peek into the future that shows it may not be long before you can take a pill to simulate caloric restriction and get your brain back to it’s youthful state.