Healthy aging is a concern of almost everyone, considering barring any unforeseen circumstances, we all grow older. Metabolism is one focus of healthy aging researchers, with variations in metabolism
resulting in various ailments among the elderly. Additionally, outside factors that can influence metabolism, like diet and lifestyle choices, are of interest to researchers, as changes in these habits could lead to improved aging and reduced risk of disease and injury in the elderly.
A new study in the Journals of Gerontology: Medical Sciences looked at the effect of diet on the metabolic profile of elderly, by comparing the Mediterranean diet, the Mediterranean diet supplemented with Co-enzyme Q10, the Western diet rich in saturated fat, and a low-fat/high-carb diet rich in n-3 polyunsaturated fat.
This study followed 10 participants, with each participant consuming each of the four diets for a four week period each (16 weeks total).
Metabolic profile of urine of each participant was measured at the start of each diet, and again after a 12 hour fast at the completion of each diet.
- Comparing the Mediterranean & CO-Q (Med&CO-Q) diet with the Western/Saturated fat diet, women consuming the saturated fat diet had higher levels of phenylacteylglycine in their urine than those women consuming the Med&CO-Q diet.
- The Med&CO-Q diet was positively associated with B-carotene plasma levels.
- The Med&CO-Q diet was negatively associated with Nrf2, thioredoxin, superoxide dismutase 1, and the gp91phox subunit of NADPH oxidase gene expression.
- The Western/Saturated fat diet was positively associated with isoprostane levels in urine.
- The Western/Saturated fat diet was negatively associated with CO-Q plasma levels.
These results suggest that the Mediterranean Diet supplemented with Co-enzyme Q10 may be beneficial for healthy aging in elderly. The specific metabolic findings mentioned above indicate that the
Mediterranean Diet supplemented with Co-enzyme Q10 could reduce the risk of disease caused by chronic oxidative stress, cardiovascular diseases, and neurodegenerative diseases.
It is important to note the sample size in this study was very small (only 10 individuals), so more research is required to further support or refute these claims.
González-Guardia, L., Yubero-Serrano, E.M., Delgado-Lista, J., Perez-Martinez, P., Garcia-Rios, A., Marin, C., Camargo, A., Delgado-Casado, N., Roche, H.M., Perez-Jimenez, F., Brennan, L., and López-Miranda, J. 2015. Effects of the Mediterranean Diet Supplemented with Coenzyme Q10 on Metabolomic Profiles in Elderly Men and Women. Journals of Gerontology: Medical Sciences 70(1): 78-84.