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Approved Research

Investigation of malnutrition, sarcopenia and frailty in older people in relation to nutritional and clinical outcomes using UK Biobank Data

Principal Investigator: Mrs Nada Almohaisen
Approved Research ID: 49810
Approval date: January 25th 2021

Lay summary

This is an observational study using a selection of participants in the biobank. The research is about three illnesses malnutrition, frailty and sarcopenia in people who are 50 years older. Malnutrition refers to both under and over nutrition. This project is focusing on under nutrition where an individual does not eat enough food to be properly nourished.  While frailty is a combination of attributes that are linked to the aging process including unintentional weight loss, a low level of physical activity, decreasing mental awareness and weakness. Frailty puts individuals at a higher risk of poor health and early death. Furthermore, sarcopenia means a low level of muscle mass and function.

This research aims to look at how widespread malnutrition, frailty and sarcopenia are in older people in the UK Biobank. It will give an overview of how often these three diseases happens in a group of old people age 50 years and above over a set period of time. A second aim is to investigate what people eat who are frail, malnourished or who have sarcopenia. 

This research is important as it shows the burden of these diseases in UK and describes how quickly disease occurs in the older population. We will also be able to determine whether malnutrition leads to frailty or vice versa. Lastly, this research will aid in identify factors associated with the risk of developing malnutrition, frailty and sarcopenia.