Better Body Composition and Lipid Profile Can Be Associated with Vitamin D Status in Spanish Elderly? The PHYSMED Study

J Nutr Health Aging. 2017;21(10):1329-1336. doi: 10.1007/s12603-017-0949-5.


Studies have shown that vitamin D deficiency increases the risk for lipid metabolism disorders, but this relationship has provided inconsistent results in elderly. Thus the aim was to assess the association between body composition and blood lipid profile levels on serum 25-hydrovitamin D [25(OH)D] concentration in Spanish elderly. A cross-sectional multicentre study was carried out in 383 participants (58.2% females) aged of 55-88 years. Fasting blood samples analyzed serum concentrations of 25(OH)D, low-density lipoprotein (LDL), high-density lipoprotein (HDL), triglycerides (TG) and total cholesterol (TC). Body composition parameters (fat mass, fat free mass) were obtained by bioimpedance, waist circumference (WC), physical activity and vitamin D intake were also evaluated. BMI, fat mass and total fat mass were lower in vitamin D sufficient subjects than vitamin D insufficient and deficient subjects, but this difference was not significant (p>0,05). Those with vitamin D adequate levels also showed lower TC/HDL ratio than those who had inadequate (insufficient or deficient) vitamin D levels (p=0.04). Significant association between 25(OH)D and BMI, waist circumference, total muscle mass, TC/HDL-c ratio, HDL and TG (for all p≤ 0.05) was found after controlling for some confounders. Subjects with inadequate HDL levels (<40mg/dL) showed 1.7 times higher odds than vitamin D deficiency than those with adequate HDL levels (>60mg/dL) (95% CI= 1.10 to 2.85 p= 0.017) and WC was negatively associated with vitamin D status odds ratio of 0.98 (0.96 to 1.00; p= 0.04). Vitamin D concentration was positively correlated with HDL-c and total muscle mass, as well as negatively correlated with WC, LDL-c/HDL-c and TC/HDL-c independently of age, gender and some confounders.

Keywords: Vitamin D; body composition and elderly; lipid profile.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Body Composition*
  • Body Mass Index
  • Cholesterol, HDL / blood
  • Cholesterol, LDL / blood
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Exercise
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lipids / blood*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Muscle, Skeletal / anatomy & histology
  • Odds Ratio
  • Organ Size
  • Spain
  • Triglycerides / blood
  • Vitamin D / analogs & derivatives*
  • Vitamin D / blood
  • Vitamin D Deficiency / blood*
  • Waist Circumference


  • Cholesterol, HDL
  • Cholesterol, LDL
  • Lipids
  • Triglycerides
  • Vitamin D
  • 25-hydroxyvitamin D