5 Things You Didn't Know About Muscle

5 Things You Didn't Know About Muscle




Muscles exist solely to allow us to grip and move? That's incorrect! They also play a significant role in what occurs throughout the body. Five updates on an underappreciated organ.
Muscles and women are not a match made in heaven. For a long time, we were terrified of gaining too much of it: Muscle packs stand in the way of being skinny above all else. Upper arms should be thin not only today but also in the future. But one does not do justice to muscles at all if one reduces them to their aesthetics. Since the beginning of the new millennium, the view of muscles has changed completely, and some astonishing findings have been made.

1. Muscles convince organs to accomplish incredible things.
Muscles are assumed to only be capable of converting nerve signals into contractions for a long time. This changed when Bente Klarlund Pedersen, a physician, and professor at the University of Copenhagen, discovered the so-called myokines (derived from the Greek words "muscle" and "m") at the turn of the millennium. These are protein-like molecules produced by muscles that function as messengers or hormones. They are sent into the bloodstream and can act throughout the body. So the muscles are not a passive structure. No, it is an organ that, like a gland, sends out messenger substances that in turn persuade other organs to do things they would never do otherwise.

For example, interleukin 6, the first and to date the best-studied myokine, causes cells to burn rather than storing incoming fatty acids from food. It makes them sensitive to the hormone insulin, which shuttles sugar from the bloodstream into the cells, where it can be consumed. And the persuasion is not limited to metabolism; interleukin 6, for example, makes the liver produce more defense substances. Soon the number of myokines was estimated at around 400, then 600 were suspected, and now Prof. Ingo Froböse of the German Sport University in Cologne believes there maybe 3,000 such messenger substances. But the same applies to all of them: the muscles only produce them when they are moved.

2. You get sick if you don't have enough muscle.
The most common diseases are generally metabolic illnesses, which include type 2 diabetes in particular. However, this condition is, in Froboese's opinion, one thing above all: a muscle miracle sickness. Because you won't get diabetes if you have enough muscles to burn the sugar in your blood. Muscles are the body's major energy consumers, and as a result, they consume the most energy. Even on the sofa, muscles use an average of 30 times more energy than fat tissue. This is because the protein structures have to be kept warm and repaired if necessary.

It is therefore completely outdated to look only at the calories burned when exercising. What really counts is building or maintaining muscle mass. "The therapeutic potential of muscles is still totally underestimated," says the sports scientist, who heads the Institute for Exercise Therapy and Exercise-Oriented Prevention and Rehabilitation. "Muscles have tremendous healing power because they are always well supplied with blood and ready to change."

3. Muscles are the most powerful metabolic stimulator.
However, the fact that muscles are so vital for energy consumption has to do with mitochondria, which are little power plants in the cells that provide energy that is ready to be consumed right away. Their quantity in muscle cells nearly doubles as a result of comparably low-intensity exercise ("aerobic training").

But there are other reasons why Ingo Froböse likes to call muscles the greatest metabolic activator. "Early in the morning, for example, when we stretch and stretch in bed, our muscles crank up our entire system," Froböse says. "When we loll, they exert a mechanical stimulus on the lymph nodes, so the lymph in them gets moving and the body's nighttime waste is effectively removed."

4. Muscles have requirements
When you don't eat enough, your muscles deteriorate. When the body is in a state of deficiency, the first thing it does is break down the large energy guzzlers. The well-known yo-yo effect occurs when your basal metabolic rate drops and you acquire weight more easily following a diet. That is why it is critical to feed the muscles enough.

But for them to do really well, they need a little more attention. Relaxation, for example: when we are under stress, the slight tension in the muscles makes it harder for the protein structures to get all the nutrients they need, and the whole system runs less smoothly than it could. But the most important thing is to use the muscles. And to do so as intensively as possible, because our movements in everyday life only use a part of them, the so-called red muscle fibers. To also train the white fibers, which are responsible for building muscle and developing strength, you need to call on at least 40 percent of a muscle's maximum capacity. You can't do that while jogging - but no one has to go to the gym anyway. You can train at home without any equipment at all, for example with squats or push-ups - today this is called "bodyweight training," for which there are numerous books as well as instructional videos on the net. Or you can check out what the gymnastics club around the corner has to offer.

5. muscles are the body's pharmacy
Even if not all myokines are known yet: It is already clear that we carry a pharmacy in the body with the muscles, which supplies us with health-promoting substances - always provided that we move. A review paper published late last year lists some myokines and their effects that have been studied to date: Irisin, for example, can convert (bad) white fat into (good) brown fat, which can burn and release stored energy directly into heat, so more calories are burned. Meteorinlike 1 can also brown adipose tissue, as is now known. Myonectin improves the uptake of fatty acids into the liver, and muscle increases the formation of mitochondria.

But it's not just about metabolism: a myokine called SPARC reduces precancerous lesions on the intestinal mucosa. Brain-Derived Neurotropic Factor (BDNF) is also of particular interest at the moment, he said, because it plays a role in the development of Alzheimer's disease and dementia. "There is a research push going on right now because people want to know how exactly BDNF influences these diseases and to what extent it can possibly be used therapeutically," says Ingo Froböse. Myokines as medicine, that would be a kind of sport by injection. Swallowing them doesn't make sense, because they break down in the stomach acid. Moreover, the substances are poorly soluble and only effective for a short time - and these are not yet all the challenges in drug development. So for the time being, we have to keep moving to benefit from myokines.


 

Post a Comment

Previous Post Next Post