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J Bone Miner Metab. 2013 May;31(3):337-45. doi: 10.1007/s00774-012-0419-4. Epub 2013 Jan 31.

Adequate vitamin D status and adiposity contribute to bone health in peripubertal nonobese children.

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Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, Department of Pediatrics, Seoul National University College of Medicine, 101 Daehak-ro, Jongno-gu, Seoul, 110-769, Korea.


The dietary reference intake (DRI) of vitamin D for Korean children was reduced from 400 IU/day in 2005 to 200 IU/day in 2010. We evaluated the risk factors for low 25-hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D] status and its relationships with bone health in peripubertal nonobese children living in Seoul or Gyeonggi-do. One hundred children (9.3 ± 1.9 years, 71 prepubertal, 45 boys) participated in the winter (n = 38, December through March) and summer (June through September). Bone mineral content (Z_BMC), fat mass (Z_FM), lean mass (Z_LM), and bone mineral density for the total body (Z_TB) and lumbar spine (Z_L1-4) were measured using dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry. Twenty-nine percent of children (47.4 % in winter, 17.7 % in summer) were vitamin D deficient (25(OH)D level of <20 ng/mL). The winter season (P = 0.008) and low vitamin D intake (P = 0.044) were associated with low 25(OH)D level. The 25(OH)D level correlated positively with Z_BMC (P = 0.040), Z_TB (P = 0.027), and Z_L1-4 (P = 0.045) independently of sex, puberty, Z_FM, Z_LM, physical activity level, and calcium intake. Z_FM correlated independently with Z_BMC (P < 0.001), Z_TB (P = 0.037), and Z_L1-4 (P < 0.001). In conclusion, almost half of peripubertal nonobese children were vitamin D deficient in winter. Adequate vitamin D status and adiposity contributed to good bone health in nonobese children. Considering the beneficial effects of adequate vitamin D status on bone health, the current DRI may be insufficient for preventing vitamin D deficiency in winter among Korean children.

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