Selenium and muscle strength in older adults

Results from the Invecchiare in Chianti (InCHIANTI) Study indicate that low selenium blood levels are independently associated with poor skeletal muscle strength — at least in Tuscany.

But should older people take selenium supplements?

First, the details.

  • Blood levels of selenium plus hip, grip, and knee strength were measured in 891 adults aged older than 64 years.

And, the results.

  • After adjusting for potentially confounding factors, participants with the lowest selenium levels were at significantly higher risk of poor hip strength, knee strength, and grip strength compared to those with the highest selenium levels.

The bottom line?
Yes, poor skeletal muscle strength was associated with low blood levels of selenium.

Despite this, the researchers concluded it’s “unclear if increased intake of selenium could maintain or improve muscle strength.” They call for future studies to evaluate if selenium supplements could slow the age-related decline in muscle strength.

8/30/07 20:59 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at www.Vicus.com, a complementary and alternative medicine website.