Study: Obesity can make it hard to walk or even stand up

A "Giant" hamburger is displayed at a McDonalds in France.
AFP/Getty Images

Listen to story

Download this story 0.0MB

A new study out of USC presents yet another reason to watch your weight. Older, obese adults may lose so much muscle, they may have trouble walking — or even standing up.

The researchers at USC say this is because older people who are overweight can develop insulin resistance, a condition that runs the risk of blocking their muscles' ability to effectively absorb glucose. Glucose is an essential ingredient in muscle growth and energy.

The study says that when this glucose blocking happens, these adults experience problems when they engage in basic actions. This includes walking and standing for long periods.

The study surveyed nearly 2,300 people 60 years and older who weren’t diagnosed with diabetes.

USC researchers say the study underscores the importance of maintaining a healthy weight and healthy lifestyle at any age, and they say that even older obese adults who are having problems can improve. Adults can lose weight by maintaining proper blood sugar levels, losing weight and doing strength-building exercises so that muscle isn’t lost along with fat.