(clinical and experimental data)
Comparison of the Atkins, Ornish, Weight Watchers, and Zone diets for weight loss and heart disease risk reduction: a randomized trial
Long-term calorie restriction is highly effective in reducing the risk for atherosclerosis in humans
A randomized trial comparing a very low carbohydrate diet and a calorie-restricted low fat diet on body weight and cardiovascular risk factors in healthy women
Intermittent versus on-demand use of a very low calorie diet: a randomized 2-year clinical trial
VLCD-induced weight loss improves heart rate variability in moderately obese Japanese
Calorie restriction attenuates inflammatory responses to myocardial ischemia-reperfusion injurys
Weight loss with very-low-calorie diet and cardiovascular risk factors in moderately obese women: one-year follow-up study including ambulatory blood pressure monitoring


JAMA. 2005 Jan 5;293(1):43-53.
Comparison of the Atkins, Ornish, Weight Watchers, and Zone diets for weight loss and heart disease risk reduction: a randomized trial.
Dansinger ML, Gleason JA, Griffith JL, Selker HP, Schaefer EJ.
Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Metabolism, Atherosclerosis Research Laboratory, Tufts-New England Medical Center, Boston, Mass 02111, USA.

CONTEXT: The scarcity of data addressing the health effects of popular diets is an important public health concern, especially since patients and physicians are interested in using popular diets as individualized eating strategies for disease prevention. OBJECTIVE: To assess adherence rates and the effectiveness of 4 popular diets (Atkins, Zone, Weight Watchers, and Ornish) for weight loss and cardiac risk factor reduction. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: A single-center randomized trial at an academic medical center in Boston, Mass, of overweight or obese (body mass index: mean, 35; range, 27-42) adults aged 22 to 72 years with known hypertension, dyslipidemia, or fasting hyperglycemia. Participants were enrolled starting July 18, 2000, and randomized to 4 popular diet groups until January 24, 2002. INTERVENTION: A total of 160 participants were randomly assigned to either Atkins (carbohydrate restriction, n=40), Zone (macronutrient balance, n=40), Weight Watchers (calorie restriction, n=40), or Ornish (fat restriction, n=40) diet groups. After 2 months of maximum effort, participants selected their own levels of dietary adherence. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: One-year changes in baseline weight and cardiac risk factors, and self-selected dietary adherence rates per self-report. RESULTS: Assuming no change from baseline for participants who discontinued the study, mean (SD) weight loss at 1 year was 2.1 (4.8) kg for Atkins (21 [53%] of 40 participants completed, P = .009), 3.2 (6.0) kg for Zone (26 [65%] of 40 completed, P = .002), 3.0 (4.9) kg for Weight Watchers (26 [65%] of 40 completed, P < .001), and 3.3 (7.3) kg for Ornish (20 [50%] of 40 completed, P = .007). Greater effects were observed in study completers. Each diet significantly reduced the low-density lipoprotein/high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol ratio by approximately 10% (all P<.05), with no significant effects on blood pressure or glucose at 1 year. Amount of weight loss was associated with self-reported dietary adherence level (r = 0.60; P<.001) but not with diet type (r = 0.07; P = .40). For each diet, decreasing levels of total/HDL cholesterol, C-reactive protein, and insulin were significantly associated with weight loss (mean r = 0.36, 0.37, and 0.39, respectively) with no significant difference between diets (P = .48, P = .57, P = .31, respectively). CONCLUSIONS: Each popular diet modestly reduced body weight and several cardiac risk factors at 1 year. Overall dietary adherence rates were low, although increased adherence was associated with greater weight loss and cardiac risk factor reductions for each diet group.

Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2004 Apr 27;101(17):6659-63. Epub 2004 Apr 19
Long-term calorie restriction is highly effective in reducing the risk for atherosclerosis in humans.
Fontana L, Meyer TE, Klein S, Holloszy JO.
Department of Internal Medicine, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO 63110, USA.

Little is known regarding the long-term effects of caloric restriction (CR) on the risk for atherosclerosis. We evaluated the effect of CR on risk factors for atherosclerosis in individuals who are restricting food intake to slow aging. We studied 18 individuals who had been on CR for an average of 6 years and 18 age-matched healthy individuals on typical American diets. We measured serum lipids and lipoproteins, fasting plasma glucose and insulin, blood pressure (BP), high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (CRP), platelet-derived growth factor AB (PDGF-AB), body composition, and carotid artery intima-media thickness (IMT). The CR group were leaner than the comparison group (body mass index, 19.6 +/- 1.9 vs. 25.9 +/- 3.2 kg/m(2); percent body fat, 8.7 +/- 7% vs. 24 +/- 8%). Serum total cholesterol (Tchol), low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, ratio of Tchol to high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C), triglycerides, fasting glucose, fasting insulin, CRP, PDFG-AB, and systolic and diastolic BP were all markedly lower, whereas HDL-C was higher, in the CR than in the American diet group. Medical records indicated that the CR group had serum lipid-lipoprotein and BP levels in the usual range for individuals on typical American diets, and similar to those of the comparison group, before they began CR. Carotid artery IMT was approximately 40% less in the CR group than in the comparison group. Based on a range of risk factors, it appears that long-term CR has a powerful protective effect against atherosclerosis. This interpretation is supported by the finding of a low carotid artery IMT.



J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2003 Apr;88(4):1617-23
A randomized trial comparing a very low carbohydrate diet and a calorie-restricted low fat diet on body weight and cardiovascular risk factors in healthy womeny.
Brehm BJ, Seeley RJ, Daniels SR, D'Alessio DA.
University of Cincinnati and Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, Ohio 45221-0038, USA.

Untested alternative weight loss diets, such as very low carbohydrate diets, have unsubstantiated efficacy and the potential to adversely affect cardiovascular risk factors. Therefore, we designed a randomized, controlled trial to determine the effects of a very low carbohydrate diet on body composition and cardiovascular risk factors. Subjects were randomized to 6 months of either an ad libitum very low carbohydrate diet or a calorie-restricted diet with 30% of the calories as fat. Anthropometric and metabolic measures were assessed at baseline, 3 months, and 6 months. Fifty-three healthy, obese female volunteers (mean body mass index, 33.6 +/- 0.3 kg/m(2)) were randomized; 42 (79%) completed the trial. Women on both diets reduced calorie consumption by comparable amounts at 3 and 6 months. The very low carbohydrate diet group lost more weight (8.5 +/- 1.0 vs. 3.9 +/- 1.0 kg; P < 0.001) and more body fat (4.8 +/- 0.67 vs. 2.0 +/- 0.75 kg; P < 0.01) than the low fat diet group. Mean levels of blood pressure, lipids, fasting glucose, and insulin were within normal ranges in both groups at baseline. Although all of these parameters improved over the course of the study, there were no differences observed between the two diet groups at 3 or 6 months. beta- Hydroxybutyrate increased significantly in the very low carbohydrate group at 3 months (P = 0.001). Based on these data, a very low carbohydrate diet is more effective than a low fat diet for short-term weight loss and, over 6 months, is not associated with deleterious effects on important cardiovascular risk factors in healthy women.

J Intern Med. 2003 Apr;253(4):463-71
Intermittent versus on-demand use of a very low calorie diet: a randomized 2-year clinical trial.

Lantz H, Peltonen M, Agren L, Torgerson JS.
Department of Body Composition and Metabolism, Sahlgrenska University Hospital, Goteborg, Sweden.

OBJECTIVES: To compare two different very low calorie diet (VLCD)-based weight maintenance strategies. DESIGN AND SETTING: A randomized 2-year clinical trial performed at the Department of Body Composition and Metabolism, Sahlgrenska University Hospital, Sweden. SUBJECTS: A total of 334 patients, body mass index (BMI) >30 kg m-2, aged 18-60 years. INTERVENTIONS: All the patients started with 16 VLCD weeks. Subjects in the intermittent group were then scheduled to use VLCD for 2 weeks every third month, whilst patients in the on-demand group were instructed to use VLCD whenever their body weight passed an individualized cut-off level. Irrespective of the treatment group, all the subjects were recommended a hypocaloric diet during VLCD-free periods. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Changes in body weight, body composition, anthropometric variables and cardiovascular risk factors. RESULTS: Completers in both groups maintained highly significant weight losses after 2 years: 7.0 +/- 11.0 kg (6.2 +/- 9.5%) in the intermittent group and 9.1 +/- 9.7 kg (7.7 +/- 8.1%) in the on-demand group (P < 0.001, ns between groups). Male completers in the on-demand group lost significantly more weight than men in the intermittent group, 14.5 +/- 11.0 kg vs. 4.0 +/- 10.5 kg, respectively (P < 0.01). Most cardiovascular risk factors improved during the first year, whilst anthropometric measures, insulin, HDL- and LDL-cholesterol were also significantly improved after 2 years of treatment. CONCLUSION: Clinically significant weight reductions were achieved after 2 years of VLCD-based treatment. The structure of VLCD treatment during the maintenance phase did not affect weight loss in the total study population, whilst male subjects might benefit from the VLCD on-demand strategy.



CExp Biol Med (Maywood) 2001 May;226(5):440-5
VLCD-induced weight loss improves heart rate variability in moderately obese Japanese.
Akehi Y, Yoshimatsu H, Kurokawa M, Sakata T, Eto H, Ito S, Ono J.
Laboratory Medicine, School of Medicine, Fukuoka University, Japan.

To evaluate the effects of weight reduction on the autonomic nervous system in obese patients, we investigated heart rate variability (HRV) based on 24-hr ambulatory electrocardiogram (ECG) recordings before and after weight reduction. To aim for weight reduction, 16 obese patients were treated with the very-low-calorie conventional Japanese diet (VLCD-CJ) therapy combined with behavior therapy. Percent weight reduction was 17.8% +/- 1.5% (means +/- SEM), but mean blood pressure did not change significantly after VLCD-CJ therapy. The mean normal R-R interval (mNN) of the 24-hr ECG and all other five time-domain indices increased after weight reduction. Spectral analysis revealed that weight reduction increased the high frequency (HF) component, but decreased the ratio of low to high (LF/HF) components. Rate of change in mNN or HF correlated positively with reduction rate of body mass index, but not that in LF/HF. Analysis of daily fluctuations in each HRV parameter showed that significant improvement after weight loss occurred mainly during the nocturnal period, but an HF component was improved throughout the day and night periods. These findings indicate that functional impairment of the autonomic nervous system in obese subjects, particularly in the nocturnal period, is improved by effective weight reduction after VLCD-CJ therapy.

Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol 2001 May;280(5):H2094-102
Calorie restriction attenuates inflammatory responses to myocardial ischemia-reperfusion injury.
Colcombe SJ, Erickson KI, Raz N, Webb AG, Cohen NJ, McAuley E, Kramer AF.
Division of Cardiology, University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio, 78229-3900, Texas, USA.

The life-prolonging effects of calorie restriction (CR) may be due to reduced damage from cumulative oxidative stress. Our goal was to determine the long-term effects of moderate dietary CR on the myocardial response to reperfusion after a single episode of sublethal ischemia. Male Fisher 344 rats were fed either an ad libitum (AL) or CR (40% less calories) diet. At age 12 mo the animals were anaesthetized and subjected to thoracotomy and a 15-min left-anterior descending coronary artery occlusion. The hearts were reperfused for various periods. GSH and GSSG levels, nuclear factor-kappaB (NF-kappaB) DNA binding activity, cytokine, and antioxidant enzyme _expression were assessed in the ischemic zones. Sham-operated animals served as controls. Compared with the AL diet, chronic CR limited oxidative stress as seen by rapid recovery in GSH levels in previously ischemic myocardium. CR reduced DNA binding activity of NF-kappaB. The kappaB-responsive cytokines interleukin-1beta and tumor necrosis factor-alpha were transiently expressed in the CR group but persisted longer in the AL group. Furthermore, _expression of manganese superoxide dismutase, a key antioxidant enzyme, was significantly delayed in the AL group. Collectively these data indicate that CR significantly attenuates myocardial oxidative stress and the postischemic inflammatory response.



Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord 1998 Jul;22(7):661-6
Weight loss with very-low-calorie diet and cardiovascular risk factors in moderately obese women: one-year follow-up study including ambulatory blood pressure monitoring.
Pekkarinen T; Takala I; Mustajoki P.
Department of Medicine, Helsinki University Hospital, Finland.

OBJECTIVE: The beneficial effects of weight loss with a very-low-calorie diet (VLCD) on cardiovascular risk factors have been reported at the end of energy restriction. As the effects, especially on blood pressure, may not remain constant during weight maintenance, we studied the longer-term effects of weight loss on 24h ambulatory blood pressure (ABP), lipids, glucose and insulin. DESIGN: Prospective study of a 17-week weight loss programme containing an eight-week VLCD period and follow-up visit at one-year. SUBJECTS: Twenty-nine moderately obese, normotensive or mildly hypertensive women. The mean +/- s.d. body mass index (BMI) was 36.0 +/- 2.6 kg/m2 and mean age 40.3 +/- 8.3 y. RESULTS: In the last week of the VLCD, the mean (s.d.) weight loss was 12.4 +/- 3.3 kg (P < 0.001), at the end of the programme 15.1 +/- 4.4 kg (P < 0.001 vs baseline), and at one-year follow-up 10.7 +/- 7.6 kg (P < 0.001 vs baseline). Mean 24 h ABP decreased 8.0/4.6 mmHg (P < 0.001 for both) on the last week of the VLCD, at the end of the programme, the systolic ABP decrease was 4.7 mmHg (P < 0.01 vs baseline) and diastolic 2.1 mmHg (not statistically significant (NS) vs baseline). At one-year follow-up, the mean systolic ABP decrease was 4.1 mmHg (P < 0.01 vs baseline) and mean diastolic 3.0 mmHg (P < 0.05 vs baseline). Sodium excretion decreased 55 mmol/24 h in the last VLCD week (P < 0.01) and returned to baseline after that. At the one-year follow-up, beneficial changes, compared with baseline, were observed in mean serum glucose (-0.28 mmol/l, P < 0.05), triglyceride (-0.35 mmol/l, P < 0.01) and HDL cholesterol (+0.16 mmol/l, P < 0.001). CONCLUSIONS: This weight loss programme with a VLCD enabled obese subjects to lose weight and decrease cardiovascular risks. Despite some regain in weight during follow-up, the beneficial effects were overall maintained over the year. Sodium intake tended to increase during follow-up. Information on sodium restriction should be included in weight loss programmes.

on the Adriatic Coast
The Anti-Aging Fasting Program consists of a 7-28 days program (including 3 - 14 fasting days). 7-28-day low-calorie diet program is also available .
More information
    The anti-aging story (summary)
Introduction. Statistical review. Your personal aging curve
  Aging and Anti-aging. Why do we age?
    2.1  Aging forces (forces that cause aging
Internal (free radicals, glycosylation, chelation etc.) 
External (Unhealthy diet, lifestyle, wrong habits, environmental pollution, stress, poverty-change "poverty zones", or take it easy. etc.) 
    2.2 Anti-aging forces
Internal (apoptosis, boosting your immune system, DNA repair, longevity genes) 
External (wellness, changing your environment; achieving comfortable social atmosphere in your life, regular intake of anti-aging drugs, use of replacement organs, high-tech medicine, exercise)
    2.3 Aging versus anti-aging: how to tip the balance in your favour!
    3.1 Caloric restriction and fasting extend lifespan and decrease all-cause mortality (Evidence)
      Human studies
Monkey studies
Mouse and rat studies
Other animal studies
    3.2 Fasting and caloric restriction prevent and cure diseases (Evidence)
Hypertension and Stroke
Skin disorders
Mental disorders
Neurogical disorders
Asthmatic bronchitis, Bronchial asthma
Bones (osteoporosis) and fasting
Arteriosclerosis and Heart Disease
Cancer and caloric restriction
Cancer and fasting - a matter of controversy
Eye diseases
Chronic fatigue syndrome
Sleeping disorders
Rheumatoid arthritis
Gastrointestinal diseases
    3.3 Fasting and caloric restriction produce various
      biological effects. Effects on:
        Energy metabolism
Lipids metabolism
Protein metabolism and protein quality
Neuroendocrine and hormonal system
Immune system
Physiological functions
Reproductive function
Cognitive and behavioral functions
Biomarkers of aging
    3.4 Mechanisms: how does calorie restriction retard aging and boost health?
        Diminishing of aging forces
  Lowering of the rate of gene damage
  Reduction of free-radical production
  Reduction of metabolic rate (i.e. rate of aging)
  Lowering of body temperature
  Lowering of protein glycation
Increase of anti-aging forces
  Enhancement of gene reparation
  Enhancement of free radical neutralisation
  Enhancement of protein turnover (protein regeneration)
  Enhancement of immune response
  Activation of mono-oxygenase systems
  Enhance elimination of damaged cells
  Optimisation of neuroendocrine functions
    3.5 Practical implementation: your anti-aging dieting
        Fasting period.
Re-feeding period.
Safety of fasting and low-calorie dieting. Precautions.
      3.6 What can help you make the transition to the low-calorie life style?
        Social, psychological and religious support - crucial factors for a successful transition.
Drugs to ease the transition to caloric restriction and to overcome food cravings (use of adaptogenic herbs)
Food composition
Finding the right physician
    3.7Fasting centers and fasting programs.
  Food to eat. Dishes and menus.
    What to eat on non-fasting days. Dishes and menus. Healthy nutrition. Relation between foodstuffs and diseases. Functional foods. Glycemic index. Diet plan: practical summary. "Dr. Atkins", "Hollywood" and other fad diets versus medical science

Bread, cereals, pasta, fiber
Glycemic index
Meat and poultry
Sugar and sweet
Fats and oils
Dairy and eggs
Nuts and seeds
Food composition

  Anti-aging drugs and supplements
    5.1 Drugs that are highly recommended
      (for inclusion in your supplementation anti-aging program)
        Vitamin E
Vitamin C
Co-enzyme Q10
Lipoic acid
Folic acid
Flavonoids, carotenes
Vitamin B
Vinpocetine (Cavinton)
Deprenyl (Eldepryl)
    5.2 Drugs with controversial or unproven anti-aging effect, or awaiting other evaluation (side-effects)
        Phyto-medicines, Herbs
      5.3 Drugs for treatment and prevention of specific diseases of aging. High-tech modern pharmacology.
        Alzheimer's disease and Dementia
Immune decline
Infections, bacterial
Infections, fungal
Memory loss
Muscle weakness
Parkinson's disease
Prostate hyperplasia
Sexual disorders
Stroke risk
Weight gaining
    5.4 The place of anti-aging drugs in the whole
      program - a realistic evaluation
    6.1 Early diagnosis of disease - key factor to successful treatment.
      Alzheimer's disease and Dementia
Cataracts and Glaucoma
Genetic disorders
Heart attacks
Immune decline
Infectious diseases
Memory loss
Muscle weakness
Parkinson's disease
Prostate hyperplasia
Stroke risk
Weight gaining
    6.2 Biomarkers of aging and specific diseases
    6.3 Stem cell therapy and therapeutic cloning
    6.4 Gene manipulation
    6.5 Prosthetic body-parts, artificial organs
Bones, limbs, joints etc.
Heart & heart devices
    6.6 Obesity reduction by ultrasonic treatment
  Physical activity and aging. Experimental and clinical data.
        Aerobic exercises
Weight-lifting - body-building
Professional sport: negative aspects
  Conclusion: the whole anti-aging program
    9.1 Modifying your personal aging curve
      Average life span increment. Expert evaluation.
Periodic fasting and caloric restriction can add 40 - 50 years to your lifespan
Regular intake of anti-aging drugs can add 20-30 years to your lifespan
Good nutrition (well balanced, healthy food, individually tailord diet) can add 15-25 years to your lifespan
High-tech bio-medicine service can add 15-25 years to your lifespan
Quality of life (prosperity, relaxation, regular vocations) can add 15-25 years to your lifespan
Regular exercise and moderate physical activity can add 10-20 years to your lifespan
These approaches taken together can add 60-80 years to your lifespan, if you start young (say at age 20). But even if you only start later (say at 45-50), you can still gain 30-40 years

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    9.2 The whole anti-aging life style - brief summary 
    References eXTReMe Tracker
        The whole anti-aging program: overview

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