Objectives: To examine associations of education and occupation with handgrip strength (HGS), lower limb strength (LLS) and appendicular lean mass (ALM). Methods: Measures of HGS, LLS and ALM (dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry) were ascertained at baseline in 1090 adults (50-80 years, 51% women), ~3 and 5 years. Education and occupation were self-reported, the latter categorised as high-skilled white collar (HSWC), low-skilled white collar (LSWC) or blue collar. Separate general estimating equations were performed. Results: The highest education group had greater HGS than the middle (0.33 psi) and lowest (0.48 psi) education groups, and 0.34 kg greater ALM than the lowest education group. HGS was 0.46 psi greater for HSWC than LSWC groups. Compared to LSWC groups, LLS was 5.38 and 7.08 kg greater in HSWC and blue-collar groups. Blue-collar and HSWC groups each had ~ 0.60-0.80kg greater ALM than LSWC. Conclusion: Progressive muscle loss can be prevented by targeted intervention; thus, we suggest clinical attention be directed towards specific social groups.
- economic status
- health status disparities
- physical functional performance