A simple test to determine grip strength may help identify adults at risk of developing diabetes in middle age, says a study that found an association between weak grip and metabolic disease and disability in adults.
Low grip strength was greatly associated with both cardiometabolic diseases and physical disabilities in middle-age to older adults, both men and women, the findings, published in the Journals of Gerontology Series A: Medical Sciences, showed.
“We wanted to examine grip strength in particular because it is highly associated with overall body strength,” said lead study author Mark Peterson, Assistant Professor at Michigan Medicine, University of Michigan in the US.
“To asses someone’s grip strength using a handgrip dynamometer takes less than 10 seconds, which makes it extremely attractive to adopt in a clinical or community setting at the population level,” Peterson said.
The research team analysed normalised grip strength for 4,544 US and 6,030 Chinese study participants 50 years of age and older.
Using weighted logistic regression models, the team assessed the association between normalised grip strength and physical disability, diabetes and other metabolic disorder.
For every 0.05 decrement in normalised grip strength in U.S. and Chinese adults, respectively, there were 49 per cent and 17 per cent increased odds for diabetes, the findings showed.
It was also linked to 36 per cent and 11 per cent increased odds for disability status, according to the study.