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Resveratrol and Calorie Restriction

A recent program on CBS 60 Minutes described experiments on resveratrol which activates the SIRT-1 Longevity/DNA Repair gene. Resveratrol occurs naturally in red wine and has been associated with the relatively good health enjoyed by Frenchmen in spite of their diet of fatty foods like quiche, brie cheese and Foie gras (goose liver pâté).

The TV program mentioned that being hungry has long been known to activate the SIRT-1 gene, and included interviews with members of the Calorie Restriction Society (CRS) whose goal is to extend life by reducing the amount of food consumed. After the program, some members of the Society commented that the broadcast had not focused on the important scientific facts about Calorie Restriction, and instead had called the green-bean paste served for the CRS interview "baby food" and the comment by Morley Safer about "dying of boredom" from this diet was inappropriate.

In all fairness, the report was about resveratrol and the advances in biochemistry that may make it possible to extend life without having to suffer hunger. Dr. Sinclair, one of the developers, estimates that a commercial product may be available in about five years. Will this be the magic pill that solves all the problems of old age? I doubt it.

Learn more about the Calorie Restriction Diet

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