Monday, September 21, 2009

More Muscle Makes for Stronger Bones

(Reuters Health Summary)

You know the old saying that people who are big are just 'big boned'? I guess I can see how that might make sense if you compare a well-fed and presumably well-nourished 'big' person to a person who thin, lacking in nutrients and, as a result, has weak and brittle bones. Well, it's about time somebody put that rumour to rest. As it turns out, neither situation is truly better than the other, and being obese or overweight doesn't actually protect individuals from developing brittle bones and osteoporosis.

According to a new study from Ghent University Hospital in Belgium, men who are fatter and have higher BMI's actually tend to have smaller, thinner bones, by and large. Wondering who had the strongest skeletons in the study? Men with more lean muscle mass. It appears that individuals with more muscle on their frames have denser and larger bones. As it turns out, the fat on one's frame actually affects bones differently than muscle - muscle mass is dynamic, while fat mass is just 'passive loading' on the skeleton.

To find out more about this recent discovery, read the whole article called 'Muscle mass, not fat, makes for stronger bones' from Reuters Health (Aug 2009)