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Maintenance of Muscle Mass

As our bodies age our muscles begin to lose muscle mass and function which usually begins in our 30's. The loss of these can lead to bad posture as we age along with slower and more unsteady movements during day to day activities. As muscle mass is made up of proteins making sure we have enough of it in our diet is extremely important. Increased protein intake along with exercise and a healthy lifestyle can contribute to the maintenance of muscle mass keeping you healthier and more active as you age. Research carried out by Seidell and Visscher  on ?body weight and weight change and their health implications for the elderly' showed the need for protein to combat muscle loss with advanced ageing. It stated:

?A shift in body composition is observed with advancing age as shown in Figure 5.18, toward an accumulation of body fat particularly stored as abdominal or ?visceral' fat. As organ function declines'

The graph below shows the change in body composition over the decades of life, from 20 to 70 years old adapted from Seidell and Visscher .

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Reference: Seidell JC and Visscher TL. Body weight and weight change and their health implications for the elderly. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2000;54 Suppl 3:S33-9.

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