Why Does Reduced Grip Strength Correlate with Chronic Lung Disease in Aging?

In this open access paper, researchers speculate on the common mechanisms underlying the correlation between reduced grip strength and chronic lung disease in old age. The many, complex, and diverse manifestations of aging emerge from a much smaller, simpler set of root causes. Simple forms of damage applied to a very complex system necessarily produce very complex outcomes. Nonetheless, the incidence of many of those outcomes, even when very different from one another, will correlate because they depend to a sizable degree on the same forms of underlying damage.

The term "sarcopenia" was first introduced to describe the progressive age-related loss of muscle mass and is correlated with poor health-related quality of life. In this context, the handgrip dynamometer (HGD) is a useful tool to evaluate muscle strength because it provides simple, fast, reliable, and standardized measurements of total muscle strength. In addition, handgrip strength (HGS) is considered an important measure to diagnose dynapenia because low HGS is a robust predictor of low muscle mass and a clinical marker of poor physical performance.

In the respiratory system, the incidence of chronic lung diseases (CLDs) is comparatively higher in individuals aged 65 and older. HGS is an indicator of overall physical capacity. It is not limited to assessing the upper limbs and is a good predictor of morbidity and mortality, indicating that the HGD is a potentially useful instrument for evaluating different populations with different respiratory conditions. Despite these advantages, HGS is rarely used as a functional measure in patients with respiratory diseases, perhaps because it is erroneously considered a part of a complex battery of functional tests.

Current evidence indicates the presence of different phenomena linking lower muscle mass and function with the occurrence of CLDs in this population. Chronic systemic inflammation is related to nontransmissible CLDs in the elderly, and this inflammatory status may be one of the main links to reduced HGS. In addition to systemic inflammation, other contributors that appear to be important are the chronic effects of hypoxemia due to CLDs, physical inactivity, respiratory and peripheral myopathy, malnutrition, and the use of corticosteroids, which is common in many CLDs. Sarcopenic obesity is increasingly diagnosed in different clinical conditions and may be an important link between decreased HGS and adiposity in CLDs. Reduced HGS in CLDs should be considered a systemic phenomenon requiring a holistic approach to restore physical reconditioning and nutritional status. Therefore, early targeted interventions should be developed in patients with CLDs to delay muscle strength decline and prevent functional limitations and disabilities.

Link: https://doi.org/10.14336/AD.2018.1226

Comments

I'm going with the theory that people with chronic lung disease aren't getting enough oxygen to any of their muscles, including those that grip. I'll also add the possibility that the atrazine and soy estrogen-mimickers that are turning potentially strong men into low-T metrosexuals who can't shake a hand, is also damaging their lungs.

Posted by: Tom Schaefer at October 17th, 2019 8:21 AM

@ Tom

Are you saying being a vegan makes you weaker? Take a look at Jared Leto and many other vegans and you will realize that's hardly the case.. Sounds like a personal issue.

Posted by: Person1234 at October 17th, 2019 3:22 PM

The longest lived group of people are seventh day Adventists, a group of vegetarian, non-smokers who exercise regularly. I would highly suggest a vegan diet if you are interested in longevity, especially if you have a family history of heart disease.

As for the pseudo-estrogen theory, there is no good data that this actually mimics the effect of estrogen in human beings. Even if it did, cow's milk has real, actual, mammalian estrogen in higher quantities. I would be more worried about that if I were you.

Obviously, atrazine is not good for you. Any pesticide eaten directly could damage you. However, has there been any direct evidence on atrazine in soy containing products in an effective concentration?

Posted by: Chris at October 19th, 2019 9:48 AM

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