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J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol. 2007 Mar;103(3-5):679-81. Epub 2007 Jan 30.

Outdoor exercise reduces the risk of hypovitaminosis D in the obese.

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Geriatric Research, Education, and Clinical Center, Miami Veterans Affairs Medical Center, 1201 NW 16th Street, Miami, FL 33136, USA.


Obesity is associated with lower levels of serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D). Obese individuals might need higher doses of vitamin D supplementation than the general population. In this cross-sectional study, associations between 25(OH)D serum levels, body mass index (BMI), and outdoor exercise were assessed in a population of 291 ambulatory patients attending the Osteoporosis Center at the University of Miami, mean age 62+/-13.48 years. Obesity was defined as BMI> or =30 kg/m(2) and hypovitaminosis D as 25(OH)D< or =30 ng/ml. Overall, prevalence of obesity was 14.1% and of hypovitaminosis D was 42.4%. Among Hispanics, there was a significantly higher prevalence of hypovitaminosis D in obese (63.2%) compared to non-obese individuals (35.8%). Outdoor exercise had a significant effect on the prevalence of hypovitaminosis D in Hispanics, with a lower prevalence in those performing outdoor exercise (24.1%) compared to those who did not (47.9%). After adjusting for age, gender, and ethnicity, those reporting outdoor exercise were 47% less likely to have hypovitaminosis D, while those with obesity had more than twice the risk. Since outdoor exercise may protect overweight individuals from hypovitaminosis D, prevention programs involving higher doses of vitamin D and/or outdoor exercise may result in additional metabolic and functional benefits in this population.

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