Efficacy of Fasting and Calorie Restriction (FCR) on mood and depression among ageing men



An intervention study on the FCR (Fasting and Calorie Restriction) dietary regime was carried out to determine its efficacy in improving mood states and depression status among ageing men.


A total of 32 healthy males (Mean±SD), aged 59.7±6.3 years, with a BMI of 26.7±2.2 kg/m2 were recruited to the study.


Participants were randomized to either the FCR group (and were instructed to follow a calorie restricted dietary regime with intermittent fasting) or to the control group (in which individuals were asked to maintain their current lifestyle), for a 3 month period. Mood was assessed using the Profile of Mood States and depression was assessed using Beck Depression Inventory-II and Geriatric Depression Scale-15 at baseline, week 6 and week 12 of the intervention.


A total of 31 subjects completed the study (n=16, FCR and n=15, control). Significant decreases in tension, anger, confusion and total mood disturbance and improvements in vigor were observed in participants in the FCR group compared to the control group (p<0.05). No significant changes in mean depression scores were observed. Weight, BMI and percent body fat were reduced by 3.8%, 3.7% and 5.7% respectively in the FCR group.


Our findings show that a FCR dietary regime is effective in improving mood states and nutritional status among ageing men.

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Correspondence to S. Shahar.

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Hussin, N.M., Shahar, S., Teng, N.I.M.F. et al. Efficacy of Fasting and Calorie Restriction (FCR) on mood and depression among ageing men. J Nutr Health Aging 17, 674–680 (2013). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12603-013-0344-9

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Key words

  • FCR
  • ageing men
  • depression
  • mood states