How Much Muscle Mass Do We Lose As We Age?

We help you keep your muscle mass at San Antonio, Texas, no matter what your age. Sarcopenia is an age-related condition that causes you to lose muscle mass and a natural part of the process. That doesn’t mean you have to accept it or that it must be as dramatic as it is. Most people start losing approximately 3% to 5% of their muscle mass each decade after the age of 30 and for men it means about 30% of their muscle mass is lost during their life. That can create problems as people become older with less and less muscle mass to help them be mobile and live independently.

With sarcopenia comes osteoporosis.

Sarcopenia and the amount of muscle mass you have directly affects your bone density. Your muscles tug at the bone when you walk or do other weight bearing exercises. That causes the bones to intake minerals to maintain strength and density. As your muscles are wasting away, your bones are becoming weaker and more brittle. So while your body is losing muscle, making you more at risk for falls, your bones are becoming more vulnerable.

What causes sarcopenia?

Scientists are exactly sure what causes sarcopenia, but have several theories. One is that hormone levels begin to drop, particularly testosterone. That might explain it for men, but what about women? Women have testosterone, too, just not as much, but other indications point to reduced protein intake or inefficient processing of protein, lack of physical activity and an increase in oxidative stress.

All is not lost, strength-building workouts can be effective.

It’s hard to rebuild muscle tissue, no matter what your age, but it’s worth it. This is one sign of aging over which you have some control. Strength training can help you save the muscle tissue you have and even build more. The muscle loss is reversible and according to many studies, strength building workouts can also help stop osteoporosis and maybe even reverse it. In fact, some studies show that exercise is more effective than some medications and the only side effects are looking great and feeling fabulous.

  • HIIT—high intensity interval training workouts can get results faster. HIIT isn’t a type of exercise but a way of doing any exercise. When you do it, you switch back and forth between high intensity and recovery pace.
  • Not only will you help maintain muscle mass, every movement will be easier, particularly things like walking. You’ll be able to walk faster and longer. Exercise also builds your endurance and can improve longevity.
  • You need all types of training, not just strength training, no matter what your age. In order to avoid injury, you need flexibility training and endurance training allows you to work longer without taking breaks.
  • If you miss those days when you could dance through the night and get up in the morning refreshed, it’s time to start a fitness program today.

For more information, contact us today at Iron Fit

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