Rejuvenation Anti Aging Concept

Los científicos descubren que cierto nutriente promueve el antienvejecimiento


Según un ensayo clínico que involucró a mujeres de 55 a 70 años, agregar este nutriente a la dieta puede fortalecer las defensas antioxidantes del cuerpo y posiblemente reducir la posibilidad de desarrollar diabetes, presión arterial alta y enfermedades cardiovasculares. Sin embargo, se necesita más investigación para confirmar su efecto.

Según el estudio, el aminoácido taurina podría emplearse en terapias antienvejecimiento.

Nuestras células producen subproductos potencialmente tóxicos conocidos como “radicales libres” cuando descomponen el oxígeno que respiramos y los alimentos que consumimos todos los días para poder existir. Algunas de estas moléculas llevan a cabo importantes funciones biológicas, pero si hay demasiadas, las estructuras internas de las células pueden dañarse, lo que afecta la capacidad de las células para funcionar y posiblemente provoque una enfermedad crónica. Nos referimos a este proceso como estrés oxidativo.

Nuestros cuerpos tienen un notable arsenal de enzimas antioxidantes que ayudan a mantener un equilibrio saludable de especies reactivas de oxígeno, pero a medida que envejecemos, estos mecanismos de control disminuyen. Un estudio reciente publicado en la revista Nutrición sugiere que complementar la dieta con el amino[{” attribute=””>acid taurine could be a realistic approach to address the issue.

The study reported in the study was carried out at the University of São Paulo (USP) in Brazil. It involved 24 female volunteers aged 55 to 70. They were randomly separated into two groups. One group consumed three 500 mg capsules of taurine per day for 16 weeks (1.5 g per day). The other group received pills that simply contained corn starch (placebo). Neither the volunteers nor the researchers were aware of which group each participant belonged to.

Oxidative stress markers were analyzed in blood samples taken before and after the intervention. One of the most intriguing findings was an almost 20% rise in levels of the antioxidant enzyme superoxide dismutase (SOD) in the taurine group, compared to a 3.5% drop in the control group. SOD, the scientists explain, protects cells from the harmful reactions of the superoxide radical.

“Preventing the buildup of free radicals that naturally occurs with aging probably prevents cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and high blood pressure, among other chronic conditions,” said Ellen de Freitas. Freitas is a professor at the Ribeirão Preto School of Physical Education and Sports (EEFERP-USP) and co-principal investigator for a project supported by FAPESP.

According to Freitas, very few studies of the effects of taurine in the context of aging can be found in the scientific literature. “This study was a first step, aimed at investigating the ideal dose and possible side effects, none of which was observed in any of the participants,” she said.

Anti-aging therapy

Taurine is a nutrient found in certain foods, such as fish, shellfish, chicken, turkey, and beef. Additionally, it is naturally produced in some tissues of the human body, particularly the liver, and is important to the functioning of the central nervous system, immunity, eyesight, and fertility.

The Freitas group has been studying taurine’s antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties for at least 10 years, initially in high-performance athletes and later in obese people, with daily dosages ranging from 3 g to 6 g. “The results showed that oxidative stress in these individuals could be controlled when their diet was supplemented with this amino acid. We then decided to test the strategy in the context of aging. This was very novel, so we began with a very low safety dose,” Freitas said.

The initial plan was to look at the effects of taurine supplementation in conjunction with exercise training, as well as both treatments separately. Physical activity is thought to be one of the main ways to regulate levels of oxidizing substances and antioxidants in the body, and the proper amount is thought to enhance the benefits of taurine. However, because of the pandemic and the fact that the volunteers were in a high-risk group for COVID-19 complications, the researchers chose to solely proceed with the nutritional component of the study, which could be monitored remotely.

Two other markers of oxidative stress were analyzed besides SOD: the antioxidant enzyme glutathione reductase (GR), which decreased significantly in both groups, and malondialdehyde (MDA), which increased 23% in the control group and decreased 4% in the taurine supplementation group.

“These results were modest, but we believe a higher dose of taurine could produce stronger evidence for its benefits,” Freitas said.

For Gabriela Abud, the first author of the article and currently a Ph.D. candidate at the Ribeirão Preto Medical School (FMRP-USP), changes in the volunteers’ diet in the early months of the pandemic owing to lockdown may have affected the results of the biochemical analysis.

“In addition to markers of oxidative stress, we analyzed levels of minerals such as selenium, zinc, magnesium, and calcium, which are important to the functioning of these enzymes,” Abud explained. “Selenium, for example, is a co-factor for glutathione peroxidase [which indirectly helps eliminate hydrogen peroxide from the organism] y se redujo en ambos grupos.”

Para Freitas, la suplementación con taurina es solo la “guinda del pastel” y no puede hacer milagros por sí sola. “Un estilo de vida saludable con una dieta equilibrada y ejercicio regular es fundamental para que se produzca el efecto antienvejecimiento”, dijo.

En el próximo estudio, el grupo planea incluir a mujeres obesas de entre 60 y 75 años con sarcopenia, una pérdida gradual de masa muscular que puede verse exacerbada por una inflamación crónica. “Estas personas enfrentan un riesgo agudo de desarrollar complicaciones. Ofreceremos entrenamiento físico asociado a la suplementación con taurina a razón de 3 g por día y observaremos las posibles alteraciones por estas intervenciones”, dijo Freitas.

Es importante tener en cuenta que los beneficios y riesgos de la suplementación con taurina en la dieta aún se están investigando. Los complementos alimenticios no deben tomarse sin supervisión médica.

Referencia: “La taurina como posible terapia antienvejecimiento: un ensayo clínico controlado sobre la actividad antioxidante de la taurina en mujeres de 55 a 70 años” por Gabriela Ferreira Abud M.Sc., Flavia Giolo De Carvalho Ph.D., Gabriela Batitucci Ph.D., Sofia Germano Travieso B.Sc., Carlos Roberto Bueno Junior Ph.D., Fernando Barbosa Junior Ph.D., Julio Sergio Marchini Ph.D. y Ellen Cristinide Freitas Ph.D., 11 de junio de 2022, Nutrición.
DOI: 10.1016/j.nut.2022.111706

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