Physiological ageing – Sarcopenia

Sarcopenia is a by-product of the ageing process, the progressive loss of muscle fibre that begins in middle age. The process starts in our 30s but, unchecked, leads to rapid deterioration in strength and endurance in the mid-60s. Without intervention, adults can lose as much as 8 percent of muscle mass every 10 years.

In this article published in the Huffington Post, Brent Green writes that sarcopenia propels a cascade of other medical problems. Less muscle mass and strength leads to faster fatigue. Chronic fatigue leads to less physical activity and a more sedentary lifestyle. Less activity results in fat gain and obesity.

Excess weight contributes to glucose intolerance, type II diabetes and a condition called metabolic syndrome. This syndrome can then cause hypertension and increasing risk for cardiovascular disease. The end-state of sarcopenia is death.

Some companies are realising the opportunity here. Ensure Muscle Health. Flavored shakes include 13 grams of protein, 24 vitamins and minerals, and a quixotic new ingredient Nestle calls “Revigor,” an amino acid metabolite.

Declining strength is one of the 25 physiological effects considered in our Age-Friendly Audit.