New York – How does what we eat affect how we age? It’s a relatively simple question, but researchers from Columbia University report that the answer is very complex. For example, eating an apple is a nutritionally good idea, but that’s just one option among the myriad of dietary decisions people make over the course of a day.
Scientists explain that the vast majority of research conducted on this topic in the past has focused on the effects of a single nutrient on a single outcome. This traditional, one-dimensional approach to investigating the impact of diet on health and aging does not allow us to see the full picture. In other words, rather than optimizing a series of nutrients one by one, scientific research on healthy diets needs to take a more holistic approach based on the “balance of groups of nutrients.”
“Our ability to understand the problem has been complicated by the fact that both nutrition and physiology of aging It is extremely complex, multidimensional, and involves a large number of functional interactions,” says Alan Cohen, Ph.D., associate professor of environmental health sciences at Columbia Mailman School, in University release. “This study therefore provides further support for the importance of looking beyond ‘one nutrient at a time’ as one size fits all answers to the age-old question of how to live a long, healthy life.”
Through a series of multidimensional modeling techniques, the study authors tested the effect of nutrient intake on physiological dysregulation among a group of older adults. This led to the discovery of key patterns among the specific nutrients associated with Minimal biological aging.
“Our approach provides a roadmap for future studies to explore the full complexity of the nutritional aging landscape,” notes Professor Cohen, who also works with the Columbia Butler Center on Aging.
Scientists have found 4 trends linking diet and longevity
The data included 1,560 older men and women, ages 67 to 84. The researchers randomly selected all of these participants between November 2003 and June 2005 from the Montreal, Laval, or Sherbrooke regions of Quebec, Canada. They rechecked each person on an annual basis for three years and tracked them over four years. The intent of these efforts was to make a large-scale assessment of how nutrient intake relates to the aging process.
The research team identified both aging and age-related loss balance (physiological dysregulation) by incorporation of biomarkers into the blood. The team put the effects of diet into the engineering framework of feed It applies to macronutrients and 19 micronutrients. From there, the study authors created eight models that explore different nutritional predictions. They were also certain to adjust for various additional relevant factors, such as income, education level, age, physical activity, number of co-morbidities, gender, and current smoking habits.
This process resulted in the identification of four general patterns:
- The level of optimal dietary intake was dependent on the geriatric scale chosen. high Eat protein It improves or weakens some factors of aging, but higher carbohydrate levels improve or impair others.
- In some cases, intermediate levels of nutrients performed well to achieve many results.
- There appears to be a wide tolerance for nutrient intake patterns, not deviating much from the norm (homogeneous plateaus).
- The optimal levels of one nutrient often depend on the levels of another element (vitamin E, Vitamin C). Simpler analytical methods are not able to understand and detect such correlations.
There is an app for this
Eager to learn more? The study authors also developed an interactive tool to explore how different combinations of micronutrients affect different aspects of aging.
Overall, these results are consistent with previous experimental work involving rats that found that a high-protein diet may be Accelerate the aging process Early in life, but can be most beneficial at older ages.
“These findings are not experimental and will need to be validated in other contexts. Specific findings, such as the prominence of the vitamin E and vitamin C combination, may not be replicated in other studies. But the qualitative finding that there are no simple answers to optimal nutrition is likely to hold: They have been evident in nearly all of our analyzes, from a variety of methods, and are consistent with evolutionary principles and much earlier work,” Professor Cohen concludes.
The study It was published in the magazine BMC Biology.
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