A recent issue of the journal Archives of Neurology includes a report that suggests individuals who have weak muscles might be at risk of developing dementia and could be future Alzheimer's care patients.
Alzheimer's disease (AD) is reportedly associated with impaired motor functions and decreased grip strength, suggesting that people who have weak muscles could eventually develop dementia.
Dr Patricia Boyle of Rush University in Chicago studied nearly 1,000 seniors whose average age was 80 years old.
None of these men and women had AD when the doctors first met them and each took a number of tests that assessed their cognitive functions and measured their muscle strength. Within four years of their initial examination, the participants underwent another series of tests and 138 had developed AD.
"Because Alzheimer's disease develops slowly over many years and its hallmark is change in cognitive function, we examined the association of muscle strength with cognitive decline," wrote the researchers.
Dr Boyle hasn't yet discovered the basis of the association. She and her colleagues believe it might be damage to the mitochondria, which makes energy for body cells.
The Mayo Clinic says that nearly 50 percent of people over the age of 85 have AD.