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Longitudinal Associations Between Handgrip Strength and Cardiovascular Biomarkers Among Rural Adults: A Project FRONTIER

878 Board #112 May 29 2:00 PM - 3:30 PM

Kim, Youngdeok1; Gonzales, Joaquin U.1; Reddy, Hemachandra2

Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise: June 2019 - Volume 51 - Issue 6 - p 220–221
doi: 10.1249/01.mss.0000561169.53392.9e
B-58 Free Communication/Poster - Physical Activity and Health I Wednesday, May 29, 2019, 1: 00 PM - 6: 00 PM Room: CC-Hall WA2

1Texas Tech University, Lubbock, TX.

2Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, Lubbock, TX.


(No relationships reported)

The decrease in muscular strength is one of the key symptoms of sarcopenia in older adults. A growing body of literature shows inverse associations of maximal isometric handgrip strength, a simple and non-invasive measure of skeletal muscle strength, with risk for cardiovascular disease (CVD)-related morbidity and mortality. However, the evidence is equivocal and there is little research examining the relationship of the concurrent longitudinal change in handgrip strength and CVD biomarkers.

PURPOSE: This study examined longitudinal relationships between maximal handgrip strength and CVD biomarkers in older adults living in rural areas.

METHODS: Data for this study came from Project FRONTIER (N=138; 59±12y, average 2.8 follow-up years), an ongoing epidemiological study monitoring the health of adults in rural northwest Texas, USA. Handgrip strength normalized to body mass index and CVD biomarkers including triglycerides, fasting blood glucose, high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C), waist circumference (WC), and blood pressure (BP) were obtained. The association between strength and CVD biomarkers was examined at baseline, with strength as a predictor of the annual change in biomarkers, and in a parallel fashion between the annual change in strength and CVD biomarkers.

RESULTS: After adjusting for demographic information, results for the total sample showed strength to associate with WC (b= -13.6, P<.001) and diastolic BP (b=6.1, P=.025) at baseline. Strength was not found to predict the annual change in any biomarker. Rather, the annual change in strength was positively associated with the change in HDL-C (b=12.7, P=.003). Interestingly, when participants were stratified into low and higher CVD risk groups, low risk adults who did not lose strength had greater annual increases in HDL-C than low risk adults that lost strength (2.3 vs. -1.4 mg/dl/year, P<.001). Adults with higher CVD risk who did not lose strength had greater annual decreases in triglycerides (P=.054) and BP (P's≤0.05) than higher risk adults that lost strength.

CONCLUSIONS: Collectively, the present findings suggest that maintenance of muscle strength with aging is related to positive changes in CVD risk factors.

© 2019 American College of Sports Medicine