Caloric restriction (CR) without malnutrition extends lifespan and delays the onset of age-related disorders in most species but its impact in nonhuman primates has been controversial. In the late 1980s two parallel studies were initiated to determine the effect of CR in rhesus monkeys. The University of Wisconsin study reported a significant positive impact of CR on survival, but the National Institute on Aging study detected no significant survival effect. Here we present a direct comparison of longitudinal data from both studies including survival, bodyweight, food intake, fasting glucose levels and age-related morbidity. We describe differences in study design that could contribute to differences in outcomes, and we report species specificity in the impact of CR in terms of optimal onset and diet. Taken together these data confirm that health benefits of CR are conserved in monkeys and suggest that CR mechanisms are likely translatable to human health.