Fasting May Actually Delay Blood Vessel Aging

  • A recent study has found that an anti-aging molecule may be triggered by fasting.
  • Beta-hydroxybutyrate – a ketone – may aid in preventing diseases brought about by aging such as Alzheimer’s, cancer and cardiovascular diseases.
  • According to research, it may also trigger a chain reaction that helps keep DNA undamaged.

The rejuvenation of human cells has been found to be a major factor in slowing down the process of aging. A study published in the journal Molecular Cell added new evidence proving that fasting can trigger the production of a molecule that slows down blood vessel aging.

A team of scientists in Atlanta headed by the Center for Molecular and Translational Medicine director, Dr. Ming-Hui Zou, initiated the research which focused on vascular aging and the ways to prevent it.

According to Dr. Zou, “The most important part of aging is vascular aging. When people become older, the vessels that supply different organs are the most sensitive and more subject to aging damage, so studying vascular aging is very important.”

Dr. Zou’s team studied the relation of restricting calories to blood vessel aging by conducting a slew of experiments on mice with atherosclerosis, studying their aortas after death. They induced starvation in the mice and performed the same experiments.

As a result, the starving mice produced a ketone called beta-hydroxybutyrate. Ketones are molecules that generate from the liver and is used as a source of energy in the absence of glucose. During fasting or starvation, ketones are rapidly produced by the body.

Another fascinating fact about beta-hydroxybutyrate is that it initiates the division cells found within the blood vessels. Cellular division is actually a factor that prevents or slows cell aging.

“The compound can prevent one type of cell aging called senescence, or cellular aging,” explained Dr. Zou.

The study showed evidence that the compound causes a reaction that can help maintain the youth of DNA.

Dr. Zou added, “if the vascular system becomes younger, it is less likely to have cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and cancer because all of these diseases are age-related.”

The CMTM director explained that they are under the impression that they’ve made a relevant discovery and they will be working on a new chemical that can imitate the effect of beta-hydroxybutyrate.

Source: Medical News Today

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