In August 2018 researchers from Canada published their review of the medical scientific literature to assess the effect of high-quality protein, leucine, vitamin D, and omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids on sarcopenia and functional decline, which in turn can lead to frailty and disability. Specifically, the role of these nutrients on the muscle mass, strength, mobility, and physical function of free-living older adults, who were either healthy or at risk of frailty was reviewed. Recent evidence supports a higher protein intake recommendation of 1.0-1.2 g/kg/day in healthy older adults, therefore an evenly distributed mealtime protein intake or minimal protein per meal may be beneficial. In addition, vitamin D supplementation of 800-1000 IU, particularly when vitamin D status is low, and doses of approximately 3 g/day of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids may also be beneficial for physical function, muscle mass, and strength. Combined protein, leucine, vitamin D, and omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid supplements may convey added benefits and may represent an intervention strategy in the prevention of sarcopenia and functional decline.
Tessier AJ, Chevalier S. An Update on Protein, Leucine, Omega-3 Fatty Acids, and Vitamin D in the Prevention and Treatment of Sarcopenia and Functional Decline. Nutrients. 2018 Aug 16;10(8). pii: E1099