The role of the diet in age-related disease is still a research field to be explored and NU-AGE intends to investigate nutrition as a modulator of inflammageing and other age-related outcomes. It seeks to demonstrate the how to, by dietary means, counteract and/or slow down the process of ageing, including decline of cognitive function, cardiovascular and digestive disease development, reduced bone density, immunity and muscle mass.
Based on the knowledge gained about influences of diet on ageing and its potential to prevent age-related disease, foods designed especially for elderly consumers will be developed and the best ways to communicate dietary recommendations to those over 65 will be explored.
The specific objectives of NU-AGE are:
- to counteract the physical/cognitive decline by a whole diet intervention;
- to assess the effect of a 65+ food pyramid using biomarkers;
- to identify cellular/molecular targets/mechanisms responsible for the whole diet effect;
- to perform genetic and epigenetic studies to assess the role of individual variability in the response to diet;
- to adopt an integrative comprehensive approach to analyse the whole data set.
The results of dietary intervention will be used to develop elderly-tailored functional foods. By dissemination activities and industrial exploitation NU-AGE will support EU strategies on nutritional recommendations, thus contributing to the implementation of legislation related to nutrition and health claims for elderly in Europe.