Background and aims: Oxidative stress may play a role in the pathogenesis of sarcopenia, and the relationship between dietary antioxidants and sarcopenia needs further elucidation. The aim was to determine whether dietary carotenoids and α-tocopherol are associated with sarcopenia, as indicated by low grip, hip, and knee strength. Methods: Cross-sectional analyses were conducted on 669 non-disabled to severely disabled community-dwelling women aged 70 to 79 who participated in the Women's Health and Aging Studies. Plasma carotenoids and α-tocopherol were measured. Grip, hip, and knee strength were measured, and low strength was defined as the lowest tertile of each strength measure. Results: Higher plasma concentrations of α-carotene, β-carotene, β-cryptoxanthin, and lutein/zeaxanthin were associated with reduced risk of low grip, hip, and knee strength. After adjusting for potential confounding factors such as age, race, smoking, cardiovascular disease, arthritis, and plasma interleukin-6 concentrations, there was an independent association for women in the highest compared with the lowest quartile of total carotenoids with low grip strength [Odds Ratios (OR) 0.34, 95% Confidence Interval (CI) 0.20-0.59], low hip strength (OR 0.28, 95% CI 0.16-0.48), and low knee strength (OR 0.45, 95% CI 0.27-0.75), and there was an independent association for women in the highest compared with the lowest quartile of α-tocopherol with low grip strength (OR 0.44, 95% CI 0.24-0.78) and low knee strength (OR 0.52, 95% CI 0.29-0.95). Conclusions: Higher carotenoid and α-tocopherol status were independently associated with higher strength measures. These data support the hypothesis that oxidative stress is associated with sarcopenia in older adults, but further longitudinal and interventional studies are needed to establish causality.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Geriatrics and Gerontology