Several controversial studies linking handgrip strength and health have suggested that low handgrip strength in older adults may be related to health problems and have investigated whether there is a minimum handgrip strength level associated with reduced mortality. Thus, by meta-analysis, the authors identified an association between handgrip strength in older adults and disease-specific mortality and all-cause mortality. Thirty studies with a total of 194,767 older adult participants were included in this meta-analysis. Higher handgrip strength was associated with an 18% decrease in all-cause mortality. Lower handgrip strength was associated with increased all-cause mortality. The minimum handgrip strength in older women that did not increase all-cause mortality was 18.21 kg. Increased handgrip strength showed a decreased all-cause mortality, whereas decreased handgrip strength was associated with increased all-cause mortality. Strengthening the handgrip may help improve disease-specific mortality in older adults.
Lee is with the Department of Sport Medicine, Kyung Hee University, Yongin-si, South Korea.