Fluctuating diet increases risk of sudden death

Apr 30, 2008

New research has revealed that binge eating then dieting may significantly reduce lifespan.

In a report published in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B, researchers at the University of Glasgow have found, for the first time, that despite having no effect on body size or reproduction rate, animals given a ‘binge then diet’ food regime could have a reduced lifespan of 25 per cent.

The study compared the growth rate, success of reproduction and lifespan of stickleback fish who were given a constant amount of food every day with those given the same overall amount of food in a more erratic feeding pattern.

Professor Neil Metcalfe said: “The fish on the fluctuating diet put just as much effort into breeding – the males became brightly coloured as usual and the females produced the normal number of eggs. However, on average their lifespan was three-quarters that of animals eating a constant amount every day.”

The research found that the difference in lifespan was not a consequence of more rapid ageing but an increase in the risk of sudden death.

Professor Metcalfe added: “It seems that uneven growth, due to the fluctuation in the amount eaten per day, is responsible for the increase in the risk of sudden death. This is possibly because the body tissues are more likely to have imperfections due to growth spurts.

Source: University of Glasgow

Explore further: California governor signs strict school vaccine legislation

Related Stories

Mechanism for aprotic sodium-air batteries

May 29, 2015

The automobile industry has been interested in finding batteries that allow electric cars to travel at a comparable distance to gas-powered cars. Currently, electric cars use a lithium ion battery, but there ...

Recommended for you

Targeting mistreatment of women during childbirth

1 hour ago

In a new systematic review appearing this week in PLOS Medicine, Meghan Bohren and colleagues of the WHO Department of Reproductive Health and Research, including HRP, and Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health synthe ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.