Ensure NutriV Tips
Aging well means staying physically and mentally strong in order to keep up with our usual daily chores. It means being able to keep doing what we like to do such as spending time with family and friends, carrying out hobbies along with partaking in social and physical activities.
Age-Related Muscle Loss And Sarcopenia
Did you know that between the ages of 40 and 70 years, adults lose on average of 24% of their muscle mass? This loss of muscle mass can make one weaker and less active.
Across the lifespan, one of the most noticeable age-related changes in the human body is an alteration of muscle mass and strength. Maximal muscle mass and strength are achieved around the age of 25, then the pattern begins to turn around. Sarcopenia is a medical condition characterized by loss of muscle mass, along with a reduction in muscle strength or function.
Healthy Aging, Muscle Mass And Strength
A combination of good nutrition and regular physical activity may help slow down age-related loss of muscle and other changes. It is particularly important to maintain muscle, because loss of muscle can have serious consequences. As muscle mass declines, we lose muscle strength and functionality, which can result in:
- Limited ability to perform daily activities such as climbing stairs or rising from a chair
- Increased risk of falling
- Disability with need for assistance
- Loss of independence
Nutrition And Aging Well
Good nutrition is a key component of healthy aging. To ensure there are enough nutrients to meet our bodies’ needs, it’s important to consume a balanced and varied diet and select nutrient-rich foods.
Some studies suggest that as we age, more dietary protein is necessary to help preserve muscle mass and strength. Since muscle strength and muscle function are correlated, getting enough protein in our diets may help us stay active longer.
In addition to good nutrition, exercise is essential to building and maintaining muscle and strength as we age. An ideal exercise plan includes both aerobic (walking) and resistance or strength training. Staying physically active daily by walking or carrying grocery bags is also beneficial.
Complete and balanced nutrition along with regular exercise is essential for an active lifestyle.
Protein / Amino Acids
Proteins are composed of many amino acids linked together. Breakdown of dietary protein provides amino acids for synthesis of muscle proteins, which are important for staying strong and active.
However, certain amino acids also act alone to regulate cell function. In the muscle, the amino acid leucine is converted to HMB*, a natural substance that generates signals to increase muscle protein synthesis and slow protein breakdown.
Fats suited to heart health
A heart-healthy diet is low in fat (fat at less than 35% of total daily calories) and includes omega-3 fatty acids but excludes trans fatty acids.
Vitamin D and Calcium
Vitamin D and Calcium help to build and maintain bones. With its dual roles of building bone and muscle, adequate intake of Vitamin D is particularly important to help reduce the risk of falls and fractures in aging adults.
Fiber helps maintain a healthy digestive system and support immune function.
Vitamins A & C and Selenium
Antioxidants help support muscle and other body tissues.