Objective: Children in rural areas have inadequate nutritional intake, hence their muscle function may be compromised. The objective of this study was to study the determinants of muscle function in rural Indian school going children.
Methods: We cross sectionally studied 232 prepubertal school going children (106 girls) aged 611 years, from 2 different villages in rural area around Pune city in July 2018. Height, weight, body composition (bioelectrical impedance, TANITA) and muscle function (Jumping mechanography, Leonardo, Novotec) were measured. Physical activity and diet were recorded.
Results: Mean age was 8.9±1 years. Mean z scores for height, weight and BMI were −0.9±0.8, −1.2±0.8 and −1.1±0.9 respectively. Mean maximum power (Pmax) and mean maximum voluntary force (Fmax) (jumping mechanography)were 0.7±0.2 kW and 0.7±0.1 kN respectively. Both, Pmax and Fmax were positively correlated with fat percentage (r=0.256, r=0.505 respectively), fat mass (r=0.336, r=0.571 respectively), fat free mass (r=0.834, r=0.819 resp), muscle mass (r=0.834, r=0.817 respectively) (P<0.05 for all). To study the determinants, the muscle function, body composition, Protein intake and physical activity were classified with respect to their medians and used in regression. Regression analysis showed that FFM was a significant predictor for Pmax (Odds Ratio OR=20.01(7.652.4), P<0.05) while light physical activity showed marginal association (OR=2.28, (0.925.7), P<0.1), together explaining 50% of variability in Pmax. FFM and vigorous physical activity were predictors for Fmax (OR=11.44, (4.330.7); OR=2.53, (1.26.3) resp, P<0.05) and animal protein intake was also marginally associated (OR=2.3, (0.935.7), P<0.1). These variables predicted 50% of the variability in Fmax. Fat percentage above median was a negative predictor for both Pmax and Fmax (OR=3.57, (1.48.8); OR=14.45, (4.943.0) resp, P<0.05).
Conclusion: FFM, physical activity and animal protein intake were the determinants of muscle function in rural children, hence require special attention.
Disclosure: The authors declared no competing interests.