It is a brand-new year, and time for new beginnings. For the month of January, Vytaliving has released handy guides to making 2022 your healthiest year yet. Across the 8 articles the following topics have been covered, weight, exercise, bones, joints, mental wellbeing skin, and cardiovascular health. Today’s article is article 8 of 8, if you want to read the rest, visit the Vytaliving website. The topic of this article is muscle health and posture, so if you're looking for ways to stay strong and eat for muscle health, read more...
Muscle is made up of a collection of fibres that makes up striated muscle. The muscle cells lie end on end with one another to form muscle fibres. The role of our skeletal muscle is to form posture and generate movement. Within the bundle of nerve fibres runs an oxygenated blood supply and a nerve. When a muscle requires movement, a signal is sent from the brain along the nerve, where it finally reaches the motor endplate, the signal is delivered through neurotransmitters to encourage the muscle to contract.
What Happens to Muscle as we age?
As we age our body becomes slower at generating and regenerating new cells. Muscle mass decreases approximately 3–8% per decade after the age of 30. Although the loss of muscle mass is common it's not a guarantee that everyone will experience severe loss. Lifestyle factors and healthy nutrition can combat this form of ageing. That being said a sedentary lifestyle and poor nutrition can lead to the development of sarcopenia, increased risk of falls and disability.
Sarcopenia is described as the severe loss of muscle mass related to ageing. This can lead to weakness and loss of stability. Dependent on the lifestyle of the person sarcopenia could start as early as 65 years. However, the age of increased progression of the disease is 75 years. Often this is caused by a sedentary lifestyle, reduced nervous system activation to the muscles, a change in hormones or a reduction in caloric intake.
Testing muscle strength
There are a number of tests that can be done at home to test muscle strength, these are listed below:
- The Squat Test- Place a chair below you before beginning the test. This should act as a safety as well as ensuring that you are reaching the 90-degree angle to complete a squat. Simply perform repeated squats until you fatigue. Follow the link Here to see how your results tally to your age. INCLUDE LINK HERE - https://foundationchiropractic.ca/at-home-fitness-testing/
- The Wall Sit Test- Place your back against a sturdy wall, slide your body down the wall, and adjust your feet until your legs are at a 90-degree angle. Do not push your arms on your legs. Hold this position until you are fatigued. Follow the link here to see how your results tally to your age. INCLUDE LINK HERE - https://foundationchiropractic.ca/at-home-fitness-testing/
- Push up Test- Place your hands facing forward on the matt. You have the option of traditional military-style push-ups where you are on your toes on have your legs in a bent knee position. Simply complete a full push up where your chest touches the ground. Follow the link here to see how your results tally to your age. INCLUDE LINK HERE - https://foundationchiropractic.ca/at-home-fitness-testing/
- Alternatively, you may like to purchase a handgrip dynamometer. This measures the isometric strength of the hand and arm muscles. The results of this test can be a strong predictor for overall wellbeing.
Nutrition for Healthy Muscles
As many of us will know, protein is required for healthy muscle and the maintenance of muscle function and maintenance of muscle mass. The average adult requires just 0.7grams of protein per kg of body weight to maintain and support muscle health. However, as we have previously discussed muscle mass decreases at a more rapid rate as we age. One of the factors for this is the conversion of protein into muscle mass. Therefore, as we age, our protein requirements increase, in order to maintain muscle mass. This increases to 1–1.2 grams per kg of body weight.
For example, if someone weighs 45kg the calculation would go as follows:
45 x 1.2 = 54 grams of protein.
Repairing and growing new muscle is an energy exhausting process. This means that although as we age, we tend to become more sedentary we must consume a high caloric intake to offset this. For example, a sedentary male will need 2000kcal per day, and a woman, 1600-2000 kcal per day.
Other Micronutrients to consider are magnesium, and zinc which contribute to normal protein synthesis. In addition, Vitamin B6 for normal protein metabolism. These can be sought in the diet by consuming a standard healthy balanced diet or an A-Z multivitamin. Such as the Over 50s Multivitamin from Vytaliving. Now available in a handy 6-month pack.
Posture is the position in which someone holds their body when standing or sitting. Posture is maintained by skeletal muscle and proprioceptive nervous system feedback. Proprioception is the awareness of the body in movement that positively or negatively feedback to the brain to stimulate the correct posture. Patients with muscular pain in and around their joints have a deficit in their proprioception. The proprioceptive system is made up of receptor nerves positioned in the muscles, joints and ligaments around joints. This system is subconscious. Poor posture can lead to poor digestion, muscle aches, trapped nerves and injury.
Vytaliving worked alongside musculoskeletal expert Dr Malcom Pope to create the Biofeedbac range to improve posture and reduce injury.
The Vytaliving Biofeedbac™ range has taken over 35 years of clinical research and development. It was designed in conjunction with Professor Malcolm Pope Dr.Med.Sc., Ph.D., D.Sc., C.Eng., Eur Ing., Eur Erg
“I worked closely with Vytaliving in the UK to develop the world’s first Biofeedbac™ health system, which utilises the body’s own automated awareness and re-educates muscles to perform at their best.”
The Biofeedbac range includes supports for the knee, shoulder, ankle, foot arch, back and more.
PICTURE OF THE FULL RANGE AND A LINK TO THE BIOFEEDBAC RANGE- https://www.vytaliving.com/collections/biofeedbac-supports