Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Handgrip Strength as a Predictor for Prediabetes

The commonly accepted definition of prediabetes, in general, is as follows: prediabetes is when an individual has abnormally high blood glucose, but the blood glucose is not high enough to be called diabetes. Prediabetes may affect the body in many ways. For example, according to a study done in India, prediabetes is associated with unwanted changes in handgrip strength. And a change in handgrip strength may come before the prediabetes. Indeed, one study, looking at subjects in Japan, indicates that handgrip strength could be an independent predictor of prediabetes.

In the India study, 200 subjects were examined. One hundred of the subjects had prediabetes and 100 had normal blood glucose. The researchers measured the handgrip strength of all subjects.

After crunching the data, the researchers found that the handgrip strength was approximately 12% less for the subjects with prediabetes compared to the subjects who had normal blood glucose.  So, handgrip strength decreased with prediabetes.

In the Japanese study, mentioned above, decreasing handgrip strength was shown to be a possible predictor of prediabetes. In the study, the researchers investigated 1075 subjects who had no prediabetes or diabetes. The researchers measured the handgrip strength of the subjects to obtain baseline measurements.  And the researchers used the handgrip strength measurements to calculate the relative handgrip strength. The relative handgrip strength is defined as "absolute handgrip strength (kg) divided by BMI (reported as kg/BMI)."

After two years of follow-up, the researchers concluded "that lower baseline relative handgrip strength predicted a higher risk of prediabetes incidence among the participants." The researchers stated that "relative handgrip strength predicted a lower and significant risk of prediabetes incidence among individuals with normal weight" as defined by a BMI between 18.4 and 25.

Therefore, handgrip strength measurements could be taken in healthcare settings. Those individuals who have low handgrip strength measurements could be examined for other indicators of prediabetes. And for those with prediabetes or a high risk for diabetes, appropriate interventions could be made.  


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