Adiposity Measures and Vitamin D Concentrations in Northeast Germany and Denmark

A. Hannemann; B. Heinsbaek Thuesen; N. Friedrich; H. Völzke; A. Steveling; T. Ittermann; K. Hegenscheid; M. Nauck; A. Linneberg; H. Wallaschofski


Nutr Metab. 2015;12(24) 

In This Article

Abstract and Introduction


Background: Body mass index (BMI) and serum 25-hydroxy vitamin D3 (25OHD) concentrations are inversely related. As BMI contains only limited information regarding body fat distribution, we aimed to analyze the cross-sectional associations of abdominal visceral or subcutaneous adipose tissue, next to common adiposity measures, with the 25OHD concentration.

Methods: Data were obtained from three cohorts of two large epidemiological studies in the northeast of Germany (Study of Health in Pomerania, SHIP-1 and SHIP-Trend), and in Denmark (Health2006). The study populations included adult men and women from the general population (N = 3072 SHIP-1, N = 803 SHIP-Trend, N = 3195 Health2006). Visceral and subcutaneous adipose tissue were quantified by magnetic resonance imagining (SHIP-Trend) or ultrasound (Health2006). Common adiposity measures, including BMI, waist circumference, waist-to-hip ratio, waist-to-height ratio, body surface area, and body fat percentage were determined by standardized methods in SHIP-1 and Health2006.

Results: The average study participant was overweight (median BMI 27.4, 26.6, and 25.2 kg/m2 in SHIP-1, SHIP-Trend, and Health2006, respectively). Visceral and subcutaneous adipose tissue as well as the common adiposity measures were inversely associated with serum 25OHD concentrations in linear regression models adjusted for age, sex, alcohol consumption, physical activity, smoking status, and month of blood sampling.

Conclusions: Next to common adiposity measures, also abdominal visceral or subcutaneous adipose tissue are inversely associated with serum 25OHD concentrations in the general adult population.