My goal is to break the world record for lifespan, 122 years, which is currently held by Jean Calment. How do I plan to do that? A good start would be calorie restriction (CR), a diet where you eat 10-30%+ less calories than your normal intake. CR is the gold standard for increasing lifespan in a variety of organisms, including yeast, flies, worms, and rodents (McDonald et al. 2010).
With the goal of maximizing my health and lifespan, in April 2015, I started a CR diet. Inherent in that was weighing all my food and recording it on an online website that tracks macro-and micro-nutrients. From then until March 2016, I was pretty good at keeping my calories relatively low, as I averaged 2302 calories. However, since 3/2016, it’s been exceedingly difficult to keep my calories that low, as I’ve averaged 2557 calories/day. So is having a higher calorie intake worse for my lifespan goal than a lower calorie intake?
Maybe not. In addition to tracking my daily nutrition since 2015, I’ve also had regular blood testing performed. I’ve measured the typical things that you get at a yearly checkup, including the lipid profile (triglycerides, total cholesterol, LDL, HDL, VLDL) markers of kidney and liver function (BUN, creatinine, uric acid, and ALT, AST, respectively), and the complete blood count (red and white blood cells, and their differentials). By tracking my daily nutrition and circulating biomarkers, I’m able to quickly intervene on any potential aging and disease-related mechanisms by using my diet to optimize my circulating biomarkers.
On my quest for optimal health and lifespan, biological age is more important than my chronological age (I’m 46y). So what’s my biological age? Between 2016-2019, the group at Insilico Medicine published 2 papers that included circulating biomarker data from more than 200,000 people (Putin et al. 2015, Mamoshina et al. 2018) to derive a biological age predictor (aging.ai). So what’s my biological age?
Shown below is my predicted biological age over 13 blood tests from 3/2016 to 6/2019:
Although I wasn’t on a CR diet during that time, my average biological age was 29.2 years, which is ~34% younger than my chronological age. Would my biological age be even younger with a lower calorie intake? I’m working on reducing my calorie intake again (it’s not easy for me), so stay tuned for that!
Here are the my biomarker values corresponding to each blood test, for anyone who wants to double check the results:
Mamoshina P, Kochetov K, Putin E, Cortese F, Aliper A, Lee WS, Ahn SM, Uhn L, Skjodt N, Kovalchuk O, Scheibye-Knudsen M, Zhavoronkov A. Population specific biomarkers of human aging: a big data study using South Korean, Canadian and Eastern European patient populations. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2018 Jan 11.
McDonald RB, Ramsey JJ. Honoring Clive McCay and 75 years of calorie restriction research. J Nutr. 2010 Jul;140(7):1205-10.
Putin E, Mamoshina P, Aliper A, Korzinkin M, Moskalev A, Kolosov A, Ostrovskiy A, Cantor C, Vijg J, Zhavoronkov A. Deep biomarkers of human aging: Application of deep neural networks to biomarker development. Aging (Albany NY). 2016 May;8(5):1021-33.
If you’re interested, please have a look at my book: