T Nation

Slow Walking 'Predicts Dementia'


The speed someone walks may predict the likelihood of developing dementia later in life, according to researchers in the US.

They also told a conference that grip strength in middle-age was linked to the chance of a stroke.

The scientists said more studies were needed to understand what was happening.

Experts said the findings raised important questions, but more research was needed.

Suggestions of a link between slow walking speed and poor health have been made before.

A study, published in the British Medical Journal in 2009, said there was a "strong association" between slow walking speed and death from heart attacks and other heart problems. A Journal of the American Medical Association study suggested a link between walking faster over the age of 65 and a longer life.

Dr Erica Camargo, who conducted the latest study at the Boston Medical Centre, said: "While frailty and lower physical performance in elderly people have been associated with an increased risk of dementia, we weren't sure until now how it impacted people of middle age."

Brain scans, walking speed and grip strength were recorded for 2,410 people who were, on average, 62 years old.

Results presented at the Academy of Neurology's annual meeting said that 11 years later, 34 people had developed dementia and 79 had had a stroke.

The researchers said slower walking speeds were linked to a higher risk of dementia and stronger grip with a lower risk of stroke.

"Before people take stock in the strength of a handshake or the speed you cross the road, more research is needed to understand why and what other factors are involvedâ??

Dr Camargo said: "These are basic office tests which can provide insight into risk of dementia and stroke and can be easily performed by a neurologist or general practitioner.

"Further research is needed to understand why this is happening and whether preclinical disease could cause slow walking and decreased strength."


Seems like everyday there is a new link cited. I heard one yesterday that waking up frequently at night raises the risk for developing plaque in your brain, and all the associated strokes, alzheimers, etc. that comes with it. The leading cause of death is living.


You've got that right.


So basically, comparing people around 62 years, those who are stronger and more active are less prone to dying. That's news to me. No matter what age you are, frailty is not a sign of good health.


black people, beware.


Seems like a chicken-egg situation to me. Are these people walking slower, or are weaker b/c of the mental deterioration that was already present?



lmfao, that one is priceless


Pretty much sums up a lot of study's.

Never mind trying to find a cure, lets peg the slow and potentially fucked up, so we can point and make fun of them before they forget.


well, regardless I am going to start walking faster. and I have TWO dogs, so there.


Careful Pete before you know it you may be jogging


Two negatives equals a positive, so you are gay. But with two wives, to hide the gayness.

I swear there is a giant database somewhere of a gazillion measurements of assorted human traits and symptoms, and there's a giant conspiracy whereby scientists take turns using some giant supercomputer to find random linkages and thereby "causalities" to said assorted human traits and symptoms. Results are published, additional studies are required, and gov't money is appropriated...Winner!

Don't get me started on the giant database of foods...


Its all BS. My walking speed depends on my motivation. Am I walking around a track for cardio? Am I walking in the mall trying to keep up with my SO and her shopping? Am I walking around the pond to enjoy the fresh air, sunshine and nature? And Hand grip? I have more grip strength in my left hand than my right even though I'm right handed. Why? Because I got stabbed through my right hand in such a way that I have nerve damage. So am I now at greater risk for dementia and strokes because my hand suffered physical trauma and sometimes I like to just wander around and and enjoy the moment? I think not.


or the study they did on vitimins.


look at this gem:

Use of multivitamins, vitamin B6, folic acid, iron, magnesium, zinc and copper were associated with increased risk of death.

Wow, so in other words, what? if a woman takes these vitimins, they have an increased chance of getting hit by a car? damn!


Good thing I walk super fast.


Dammit I walk really fucking slow. All my friends even point it out too.


Then you will have heart disease, dementia, and other diseases and illnesses. See what you have done to yourself?!