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J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2006 Aug;91(8):3232-5. Epub 2006 May 23.

Effect of long-term calorie restriction with adequate protein and micronutrients on thyroid hormones.

Author information

  • 1Washington University School of Medicine, 4566 Scott Avenue, Campus Box 8113, St. Louis, MO 63110, USA. lfontana@im.wustl.edu

Abstract

CONTEXT:

Caloric restriction (CR) retards aging in mammals. It has been hypothesized that a reduction in T(3) hormone may increase life span by conserving energy and reducing free-radical production.

OBJECTIVE:

The objective of the study was to assess the relationship between long-term CR with adequate protein and micronutrient intake on thyroid function in healthy lean weight-stable adult men and women.

DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS:

In this study, serum thyroid hormones were evaluated in 28 men and women (mean age, 52 +/- 12 yr) consuming a CR diet for 3-15 yr (6 +/- 3 yr), 28 age- and sex-matched sedentary (WD), and 28 body fat-matched exercising (EX) subjects who were eating Western diets.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:

Serum total and free T(4), total and free T(3), reverse T(3), and TSH concentrations were the main outcome measures.

RESULTS:

Energy intake was lower in the CR group (1779 +/- 355 kcal/d) than the WD (2433 +/- 502 kcal/d) and EX (2811 +/- 711 kcal/d) groups (P < 0.001). Serum T(3) concentration was lower in the CR group than the WD and EX groups (73.6 +/- 22 vs. 91.0 +/- 13 vs. 94.3 +/- 17 ng/dl, respectively) (P < or = 0.001), whereas serum total and free T(4), reverse T(3), and TSH concentrations were similar among groups.

CONCLUSIONS:

Long-term CR with adequate protein and micronutrient intake in lean and weight-stable healthy humans is associated with a sustained reduction in serum T(3) concentration, similar to that found in CR rodents and monkeys. This effect is likely due to CR itself, rather than to a decrease in body fat mass, and could be involved in slowing the rate of aging.

PMID:
16720655
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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