The ageing process is strongly influenced by nutrient balance, such that modest calorie restriction (CR) extends lifespan in mammals. Irisin, a newly described hormone released from skeletal muscles after exercise, may induce CR-like effects by increasing adipose tissue energy expenditure. Using telomere length as a marker of ageing, this study investigates associations between body composition, plasma irisin levels and peripheral blood mononuclear cell telomere length in healthy, non-obese individuals. Segmental body composition (by bioimpedance), telomere length and plasma irisin levels were assessed in 81 healthy individuals (age 43 ± 15.8 years, BMI 24.3 ± 2.9 kg/m(2)). Data showed significant correlations between log-transformed relative telomere length and the following: age (p < 0.001), height (p = 0.045), total body fat percentage (p = 0.031), abdominal fat percentage (p = 0.038), visceral fat level (p < 0.001), plasma leptin (p = 0.029) and plasma irisin (p = 0.011), respectively. Multiple regression analysis using backward elimination revealed that relative telomere length can be predicted by age (b = -0.00735, p = 0.001) and plasma irisin levels (b = 0.04527, p = 0.021). These data support the view that irisin may have a role in the modulation of both energy balance and the ageing process.