Friday, August 7, 2009

Another Reason to Exercise

"Those who think they have not time for bodily exercise will sooner or later have to find time for illness." —Edward Stanley

How many years have I told myself, "I need to exercise?" Yet, I do not take my own advice. Why do I succumb to these exercise mantras?

  • Exercise is a dirty word. Every time I hear it, I wash my mouth out with chocolate. —Author Unknown
  • My idea of exercise is a good brisk sit.—Phyllis Diller
  • People say that losing weight is no walk in the park. When I hear that I think, yeah, that's the problem. —Chris Adams
  • I am pushing sixty. That is enough exercise for me. —Mark Twain
  • Whenever I feel like exercise, I lie down until the feeling passes. —Robert M. Hutchins

Even though I do not see myself as "geriatric" material yet, my birthdays do not lie. ScienceDaily once again guilts me by providing yet another reason to exercise.

ScienceDaily (Aug. 7, 2009) — Older adults who have less strength, poor physical function and low muscle density are at higher risk of being hospitalized compared to adults with more strength and better function. That's the finding of a new study in the Journal of the American Geriatric Society.

The study also found that muscle density, a measure of how much fat compared to lean tissue there is in the muscle, is a more accurate gauge of a person's risk of hospitalization than muscle mass or size. The relative risk for hospitizations was 50% higher for those with poor walking or less dense muscle mass

"Our research suggests that we need to re-think the way we define sarcopenia or age-related muscle loss," says Peggy Cawthon, PhD, MPH, a scientist with the California Pacific Medical Center Research Institute and the lead author of the study. "Many definitions of sarcopenia today tend to focus on lean mass or muscle size, our study shows that is looking at the wrong factors. We found that muscle strength or performance were much better ways of measuring function." *

Guess that gives me just one more reason to exercise. Now if I can just speed walk out my front door and get started!

* Wiley-Blackwell (2009, August 7). Higher Muscle Density Reduced Risk Of Hospitalization In The Elderly. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 7, 2009, from­ /releases/2009/07/090730073614.htm