Often ignored and misunderstood as an area of relevance only to a sportsperson or a gym goer, muscle health of seven out of 10 Indians is poor, said a new study on Wednesday.
"As per the study, 71 per cent Indians suffer from poor muscle health and need to gain muscle mass. Poor muscle mass could lead to impaired muscle function, fatigue and poor metabolic health," said the joint study conducted by InBody and Ipsos.
InBody is a leader in body composition analysis and Ipsos is a market research firm.
"Not many Indians know about its overall impact on health and wellness. Good muscle health is not only a key for an active lifestyle but also for carrying out our daily physical activities to maintain a healthy life," said the study.
The study was conducted across eight cities -- Delhi-NCR, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Ahmedabad, Lucknow, Patna and Hyderabad covering 1,243 people. The respondents were a mix of working and non-working individuals of 30 to 55 years.
Lucknow had the highest percentage of males and females having poor muscle mass, with 82 per cent males and 80 per cent females. Delhi-NCR had a lower percentage of people with poor muscle mass, with 64 per cent of both males and females.
The study also analysed the body protein level and the trend was similar to that of the poor muscle mass levels.
"Nutrition and exercise have been shown to play a major role in improving muscle health. With reference to nutrition, one specific nutrient that plays a role in muscle health is protein. The present research acknowledges the importance of protein in daily diet and exercise to maintain good muscle health," it said.
Further, it said adequate intake of dietary proteins is vital as it ensures provision of amino acids and stimulates protein synthesis. Dietary protein and specific amino acid ingestion largely raises muscle protein synthesis and inhibits protein breakdown.
Along with adequate protein intake, exercise also plays important role in stimulating muscle protein synthesis and good muscle health.
According to the study, the alarmingly large proportion of Indians suffering from poor muscle health is a matter of great concern and it is important to find out ways and means to address this issue.
"There is an urgent need to spread awareness about muscle health, role of adequate protein intake and exercise for a healthy life," it added.