I came across an article recently which highlighted the connection between muscle strength and Alzheimer’s.
The article reported the results of a study performed by Dr. Patricia A. Boyle and her colleagues from Rush Alzheimer’s Disease Center in Chicago. They found that the greater a person’s muscle strength, the lower their likelihood of being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. The same was true for the loss of mental function that often precedes full-blown Alzheimer’s.
The researchers initially measured the strength of nine muscle groups in the arms and legs of 970 dementia-free men and women 54 to 100 years old (their average age was around 80).
During a four-year follow-up, 138 people in the study developed Alzheimer’s. These individuals were older and had worse mental function than the rest of the study participants. They also were weaker.
They found that muscle strength had a strong influence on the risk of the disease. People who ranked in the top 10 percent of muscle strength were 61 percent less likely to develop Alzheimer’s than the weakest 10 percent.
Stronger people also showed a slower decline in their mental abilities over time
If you’re not already performing some form of resistance training, this study should provide you with motivation to get started!