Background and Objectives: Sarcopenia is explained as age-related reduction in muscle mass and performance. Some of the most important risk factors for sarcopenia include age, malnutrition, and sedentary life style. The aim of this study was to investigate the association of food intake and physical activity with body composition, muscle strength and muscle function in post-menopausal women.
Materials and Methods: In this cross-sectional study, a total of 190 women aged 40-60 years were recruited from the staff working in Iran University of Medical Sciences. Variables consisting of muscle strength and muscle function, anthropometric indices, dietary intakes, and physical activity were evaluated. Statistical analysis was performed using SPSS version 21.
Results: There was a positive association between physical activity and handgrip strength (P=0.01), calorie intake and muscle function, protein intake and fat free mass percentage, total fat intake and fat mass percentage (in all associations, P<0.001). In addition, a negative association was observed between carbohydrate intake and muscle function, as well as total fat intake and fat free mass percentage (in both associations, P<0.001). There was not a significant relationship between the other variables (P>0.05).
Conclusions: It seems in this middle-aged women group, mild fat and carbohydrate restriction combined with mild or moderate physical activity may lead to reduction in fat mass, increased fat free mass, and improvement in muscle strength and muscle function.
Keywords: Food intake, Physical activity, Body composition, Muscle strength, Muscle function, Post-menopausal women