Wednesday, November 01, 2006

More on the Longevity Drug

Yesterday I concluded my blog post with a quote from the very popular New York Times article, "One for the Ages: A Prescription That May Extend Life," that I was covering.

If you're too lazy to scroll down, here it is again: "a pill mimicking the effects of calorie restriction might increase human life span to about 112 healthy years, with the occasional senior living until 140."

This pill is based on a super-antioxidant found in red wine called "resveratrol."

I still think it sounds too good (or, easy) to be true, but Newsweek
posted a "web exclusive" today on the resveratrol that caught my eye. At Newsweek, they report that resveratrol "may help reverse some of the complications of obesity and even extend life." This according to a study where resveratrol was given to mice on a high-fat diet (60 percent of their daily calories came from fat). Despite the unhealthy diet, mice on the drug had a 31 percent lower death rate than those that were not on the drug.

The study, conducted by the Harvard Medical School, found that mice on reserveratrol showed the same physiological changes as animals that either A) exercised a lot, or B) were on a reduced-calorie diet. According to scientists, reserveratrol activates the Sir2 family of genes, which act as a natural defense against aging.

Does this mean there's a pill on the way that gives you the benefits of exercising and a low-cal diet without ever setting foot on a treadmill or passing on seconds? I don't know, but I stick with what I said yesterday: Too easy… I'm skeptical.

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About Me

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I started pound360 to channel my obsession with vitamins, running and the five senses. Eventually, I got bored focusing on all that stuff, so I came back from a one month hiatus in May of 2007 (one year after launching Pound360) and broadened my mumblings here to include all science.