Weak grip may predict risk for metabolic disorders

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The authors of a new study say the finding illustrates the importance of simple grip tests in a clinical setting

A new study has demonstrated that reduced grip strength (NGS) is robustly associated with both cardiometabolic disease risk and physical disabilities.

For the study, published in Journals of Gerontology Series A: Medical Sciences , researchers examined data relating to 6,030 adults in China and 4,544 adults in the US.

They found for every 0.05 decrement in normalised grip strength (NGS) was associated with 49 per cent increased odds for diabetes in American adults and 17 per cent increased odd in Chinese participants Odds for hyperglycaemia were increased by 46 per cent and 11 per cent, respectively, and odds for low HDL cholesterol were 22 per cent and 15 per cent. Risks were also higher for hypertriglyceridaemia, hypertension and disability status.

“To assess someone’s grip strength using a handgrip dynamometer takes less than 10 seconds, which makes it extremely attractive to adopt in a clinical or community setting at the population level,” said lead author, Mark Peterson. “We hope these findings illustrate how important a simple grip strength test could be in the clinical setting,” he added.

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