Wednesday, March 12, 2014
A diet high in protein, particularly animal protein, may help elderly individuals function at higher levels physically, psychologically, and socially, according to a study
The research suggests that as people age, their ability to absorb or process protein may decline. To compensate for this loss, protein requirements may increase with age. Due to increasing life expectancies in many countries, increasing numbers of elderly people are living with functional decline, such as declines in cognitive ability and activities of daily living. This can have profound effects on the health and well-being of older adults and their caregivers, as well as on health care resources. Researchers found that men in the highest quartile of animal protein intake had a 39% decreased chance of experiencing higher-level functional decline than those in the lowest quartile. These associations were not seen in women. No consistent association was observed between plant protein intake and future higher-level functional decline in either sex.