In practice and in my life, I pursue finding the diet, activities, nutrients and, if needed, medications that promote the longest healthspan, one where we live a long productive life with our best health throughout. So why don’t I have some branded pill that says “longevity” on it? There are so many companies promoting a pill for longer life – why haven’t I recommended this for you? Go online and you will quickly see that the most common of these medication options are rapamycin, metformin and resveratrol. So do they work?
LONGEVITY MEDS VERSUS DIET
A team of savvy researchers in Sydney Australia tackled this question, in mice I realize, but this is how all longevity research starts. The researchers did three radically important things. 1) They identified and used the most popular and supported longevity medications available. 2) They designed the study to compare numerous dietary interventions that have different macronutrient ratios like low carb, very low carb, higher protein, low calorie, etc. 3) they used genetic expression as a metric – looking at the genetic messaging through pathways referred to as Nutrients Sensing Pathways.
Diet Crushes It and Meds Fail
“We discovered dietary composition had a far more powerful effect than drugs, which largely dampened responses to diet rather than reshaped them,” said Professor Simpson, one of the team of researchers.
“Given humans share essentially the same nutrient-signalling pathways as mice, the research suggests people would get better value from changing their diet to improve metabolic health rather than taking the drugs we studied.”
The drugs were not merely less effective than diet, they actually dampened and blocked the body’s natural and healthy response to diet interventions. The overarching message was related to the metabolic activities within cells but the researchers went a step further to show how cells translate their genes into the different proteins needed for optimal function and to make new cells. And that gene translation pathway has my attention, we recreate ourselves every day, week and year for better or worse. Getting the right diet for your metabolic health creates cells that don’t just work better, they have offspring that “are” better. That to me is the miracle
Now, I can fully appreciate how my healthiest life is found without a miracle potion from a place that touts anti-aging or longevity. I’d rather see my metabolic blood tests in a healthy range without the miracle pill and more simply with my lower-carb nutrient rich diet, a simple yet occasionally strenuous fitness program and only a few high-quality core nutrients.
I hope I can help you find the best metabolic health possible.