Research

Research reveals that Muscle Memory is a Real Thing

You are much likely to ride a bicycle in childhood and its not just you, your muscles also remember it. The new research says that doing a physical activity especially at a young age helps to gain lean muscle mass at later years of life.

This review is published in Frontiers In Physiology and Lawrence Schwartz, Ph.D., a Biology professor at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst is its first author.

Dr. Schwartz discusses that muscle memory is real as the experiment demonstrates in animal and insect models. These positive results are not equivalent to humans but are very promising for similar research on humans.

How does your body build a muscle?

Muscles are typical body tissues that make much most of your body mass. They may grow or shrink as per different changes in your lifestyle, diet etc.

Following a set routine of exercise helps in hypertrophy (a term for muscle growth). However, it only happens if you are eating well and doing exercise. If you are living a sedentary lifestyle or malnutrition, it may shrink your body muscles (atrophy).

Normally, single cells have only one nucleus, but when hypertrophy occurs, multiple nuclei show up from surrounding cells to support cell growth. Just like how these nuclei come along for this purpose they can also die if the muscle is shrinking.

The new research argues that nuclei must maintain a certain ratio with the volume to the cell. The hypertrophy needs more nuclei and atrophy requires a lot less. There is evidence that suggests the additional nuclei to act persistently during atrophy. It allows your body to store these additional nuclei in their muscle cells and these can be drawn at later years.

What is muscle memory?

This research is only an early level test and for a firm statement, more studies are required on muscle memory. Last year a study with human subjects revealed that muscle memory is able to develop certain genetic markers in an individual’s body that help to regain the muscles later on.

This study means that any person who has worked out in his past will easily build his muscle again as compared to a person who has never worked exercise in the past.

This research signifies to improve muscle growth that in turn can improve the health of many patients.

How to improve it?

It is necessary to create a fighting back strategy against sarcopenia. It is indeed a practical step that anyone can take in order to get back to a good shape. Not just a good diet but a regular exercise will help to build muscle mass.

It doesn’t matter if you are in your middle ages or older, muscle loss is a serious concern. But thankfully it is a modifiable condition that you may control by day-to-day activities.

This study also educates parents on the importance of physical training of their children. It is necessary to encourage kids to go out and play so that being physical at a young age may motivate them at a later stage to be healthier.

People that are very fit and active at younger age never really get out of it. They have a whole bank of those extra nuclei and at any time when, they decide to get back to the fitness regime, it is never too hard for them.

 

Areeba Hussain

The author is a Medical Microbiologist and a healthcare writer. She is a post-graduate of Medical Microbiology and Immunology with distinction. She is an author of six research papers and currently working as a research associate in a Research Lab.

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