Longevity and Muscle
We are constantly looking for ways to improve our life our longevity and most importantly our quality of life. Relentlessly on the lookout for interesting and important information that we think will benefit us all.
With this in mind we ask the question. Is there a link between muscle retention and longevity?
Due to improved health care, diet and infrastructure in developed countries, since 1840 life expectancy has increased by approximately 2 years per decade. Accordingly, by 2050, a quarter of Europe’s population will be over 65 years, representing a 10 % rise in half a century. But does this rise in life expectancy mean a rise in quality of life?
With this rapid rise comes an increased prevalence of diseases of ageing and associated healthcare expenditure. So with this we ask another question. How do we maintain our quality of life as we continue to age?
Throughout all of our findings. The overall indicator to better quality of life as we age is the ability to maintain and develop our skeletal muscle.
This onset of sarcopenia (muscle wastage) is fundamentally important for health as skeletal muscle in a healthy adult accounts for approximately 40 % of total body mass. In addition to its primary tasks of maintaining posture, breathing and locomotion, skeletal muscle also represents an important nutrient store and metabolic regulator. During ageing, approximately 30 % of an individual’s peak muscle mass is lost by the age of 80, and this loss is exacerbated by physical inactivity and poor nutrition. This decline in skeletal muscle metabolism and function should not be underestimated, as in the UK alone, complications arising from falls in the elderly (with an association to frailty) are estimated to cost the National Health Service £1.7 billion annually!
Heres a frightening fact that not a lot of us know that we wanted to share with you. Women over the age of 65, if they fall, 50% will never walk again. The only way to protect ourselves and to aid the recovery of the body after trauma is the ability to retain skeletal muscle.
Everything that happens in later life from diseases such as cardiovascular disease to Alzheimer’s disease can and should be addressed and taken seriously in mid life. The little positive actions we can take to ensure a greater quality of life later on cannot be underestimated or over emphasized. We must absorb and retain the right information that will allow us to live longer healthier lives.
Everything we have found to be a precursor to this endeavour is linked to our ability to maintain our skeletal muscle. Our diets and lifestyles must be more aligned to this one single goal. Together we can make a difference. We can have more quality time as families. We can simply enjoy and experience our lives fuller and for longer.
A great source of clear information and advocate for skeletal muscle and founder of Muscle -Centric Medicine is Dr Gabrielle Lyon
Social acc. Instagram @drgabriellelyon