March 3


Research Shows that We Need Muscle to Live Longer

By Domain Millwork

March 3, 2022

Muscle mass correlates with a decrease in all-cause mortality. It’s true, prioritizing muscle mass and muscle strength are critically important to optimizing our health and longevity. It is also true that our muscle mass, and strength decline with age; which can have dramatic negative effects on our health. Muscle mass starts to diminish as early as our 40’s and accelerates dramatically as we enter our 60’s. Therefore, if we do not prioritize our muscle strength and muscle mass when we are younger, then the risks of muscle loss multiply and are harder to overcome as we age.

Minimizing our risk of falls, and injury following a fall is directly related to our muscle mass, strength, and balance. While chronic disease sets the stage for our decline as we age, what ultimately leads to frailty and our demise is the risk of falling, and the injuries sustained from falling. Our muscle mass and strength also speed our recovery after a fall or injury. Loss of muscle mass is an important cause of functional decline, and is predictive of a shorter lifespan, and worse recovery after injury or surgery. The causes are multifactorial, with neurological decline, hormonal changes, chronic inflammation, sedentary behavior, chronic illness, and poor nutrition.

Our muscle tissue accounts for more than 50% of our body mass and is essential for a healthy metabolism. Muscles help us control our glucose levels, use glucose as fuel, and have a role in insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes. Muscle and fat are two highly metabolic tissues. How our tissues interact with our metabolic machinery matters. Visceral or belly fat is very toxic to us, and we should seek to minimize the amount that we have. Visceral fat is responsible for considerable chronic disease states such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and fatty liver. Muscles, on the other hand, improve our ability to manage glucose, dispose of glucose and muscles have a role in mediating the severity of insulin resistance. Exercise is prescribed to people with insulin resistance or type 2diabetes to improve glucose control and their overall metabolic dysregulation.

Domain Millwork

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