Cellular health is the future of muscular health
Thirty to forty percent of the total mass of a human body, on average, is skeletal muscle. It’s the most abundant tissue. Muscle function is critical not only for locomotion but also for breathing and other critical body functions. As we age muscle mass and function declines and this starts within our cells. Let’s understand how ageing affects cellular health and how to improve it to age better.
Cells are the building blocks of our muscles and numerous biological processes control cellular health, some of which decline over time and prime muscle ageing. Several key underlying factors of muscle cell ageing include mitochondrial function, protein quality control, oxidative status, muscle cell renewal, insulin sensitivity, and circulation factors.
Key regulators of cellular health
 Regenerative ability:
The large majority of our skeletal muscle cells, which make up muscle tissue, are mature and do not divide anymore, meaning they cannot regenerate the tissue. However, the muscles host a small number of stem cells – which keep the ability to reproduce and are also called “satellite cells”. They are responsible for the growth and repair of muscle tissue. Research has demonstrated that the ability of these muscle stem cells to repair does not decrease over time. However, aging clearly reduces the number of stem cells and, therefore, has an impact on the body’s capacity to grow and repair muscle.
 Insulin sensitivity:
Muscle cells respond to insulin thereby contributing to the uptake of blood glucose. However, upon aging, muscle cells become resistant to insulin with a negative effect on energy metabolism.
Muscle ageing is a complex process, but science is starting to understand how it works. Having a sense of how cellular health declines with ageing is important to define effective prevention and interventional strategies. So far, we know that two lifestyle changes can combat muscle ageing: regular exercise and optimal nutrition. However, this does not mean merely abiding by the classic “five fruits and veggies a day” rule but refers to smart nutrition, tailored to impact these key biological processes described above that impact muscle health with age.
Knowledge is power
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