Strength, Self-Care Ability and Death in Aging Adults…Get a Grip!

Loss of muscle strength during aging presents many health problems. Since muscle strength can be difficult to measure, handgrip strength often serves as an estimate for overall muscle strength. In this study, the investigators examined if decreased handgrip strength reduced self-care abilities, and in turn, if such problems with completing self-care tasks impacted time to death in adults aged at least 50 who were followed for almost a decade. A representative sample of 17,747 older U.S. adults were included.

The results revealed that strength loss, as measured by handgrip strength, hurt ability to self-care, and problems with completing self-care tasks increased the risk for death during aging. As we age, preserving muscle strength is important for maintaining good health. Practicing healthy behaviors as early as possible might help preserve strength. Talk to your doctor or health care provider about handgrip strength and how to remain strong. This may help you get a grip on your health!

For more information, view the abstract.

American College of Sports Medicine

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