What happens to my muscle mass at 40?

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Most times men and women also go into a fear mode because they feel as though when they age they will lose muscle and decreased health is inevitable.  The decrease in testosterone and risk of losing muscle is possible but there is great news, you can do something about it!

You may not be able to turn back the clock but you do not have to accept aging.  If you take care of yourself, take care of your body, aim to build muscle as Dr. Oz says through yoru core, shoulders and belly the great news is:

  1. You don't have to accept muscle loss, fight against it
  2. You will be more toned and look and feel better as you age
  3. You will reduce the chances of any bone or joint problems
  4. You will reduce the risk of injury
  5. You will spit in the face of aging and you will get not older and more broken down, you will look and feel better.

Find a good fitness professional, get engaged on the Sharecare platform and fight against the bodies natural inclination to lose muscle and take control of your life, your health and your fitness as you age.

After the age of 35, if you do not engage in regular resistance training you will lose muscle at the rate of .5-1 pound a year. As you reach your 70’s this can be a significant loss in muscle mass, which makes it harder to do daily tasks like chores around your house putting away groceries and getting out of a chair. The best way to prevent this is to engage in regular resistance training. If done on a regular basis you can prevent any further loss in muscle mass and can also increase muscles mass. Studies show that especially in older adults. Regular resistance training significantly improves their ability to perform activities of daily living (ADL’s) independence and risk of falling. If you’re over 40 and new to weight training  first consult your physician and get a thorough physical before starting a resistance training program. Once you’ve been cleared by your doctor start with light weights and focus on 12-15 repetition range, performing lifts that target all the main muscles groups 2-3 times a week.  As your strength increases start to use heavier weights and gradually decrease the repetitions towards the 3-6 repetition range. Make sure to progress slowly and do not increase weight by more than 5-10% between sessions as your ligaments, tendons and soft-tissue  take longer to adapt to strength training.  

Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)

Muscle burns three times more calories than fat cells, which means loss of muscle mass causes weight gain and an inability to shed pounds. Key factors that create loss of muscle mass include a drop in testosterone levels, crash dieting, and disuse from aging. Recent studies suggest that at 40, women lose muscle mass twice as fast as men. You lose the most muscle mass on the body’s largest surface areas like the core muscles supporting your shoulders and belly, as well as your thighs.

 To fight muscle loss in your back and shoulders try plank exercises; you can do them during commercial breaks while you’re watching TV. Simple squats are great for firming up thigh muscles; try doing them in the kitchen while you wait for dinner to finish cooking.


This content originally appeared on doctoroz.com

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.