A new study says that that the speed of your walk and the strength of your hand grip might shed light on your odds of having a stroke or memory problems as you get older.
Researchers looked 2,400 men and women (average age 62) who had not had a stroke or mental decline when the study began. They measured participants' hand grip strength and walking speed, and they also gave them a brain scan and memory tests. During an 11-year follow-up period, 79 people suffered a stroke or transient ischemic attack ("mini-stroke") and 34 people developed dementia.
Their findings may reveal more on how a person's walking speed can indicate their overall
health, and how a weaker grip can be a sign of less upper-body strength and
frailty. The study will be presented in April at the 2012 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Neurology in New Orleans.