Re: Caloric Restriction Does not Slow Aging in Humans

Max More (
Tue, 24 Feb 1998 09:52:55 -0800

At 12:14 AM 2/24/98 -0800, you wrote:
> There has been some speculation that caloric restriction might be able
> to retard the rate of aging, and extend maximum human life span beyond
> 120 years of age. (For example see the book "The 120 Year Diet" by Roy
> Walford)
> Recent evidence indicates that the anti-aging effect of caloric
> restriction, which has been documented in rodents, is not operative in
> humans.

The evidence you site doesn't seem to me to provide strong support for
rejecting caloric restriction for human life extension. Two reasons:

(1) Simply comparing BMI (Body Mass Index?) to death rate can be
misleading. There are millions of people who die of cancer and other
wasting diseases who lose weight and die with a lower BMI. It doesn't seem
like the study allowed for that.

(2) Apparently smoking cigarettes reduces appetite. I would expect smokers,
especially heavy smokers, to have a lowe BMI and to die earlier, on
average, of heart disease, cancer, and other diseases.

(3) I suspect that most or many of those who have a low BMI and who don't
live as long, may not have maintained the high nutrition diet specified by
caloric restriction advocates. Low calorie intake with low nutrient intake
is not claimed to extended life.



Max More, Ph.D.
UPDATED WEBSITE: New essays, new photos:
President, Extropy Institute:,