Objective: The effects of vitamin D in the elderly are inconsistent. The aim of this study was to evaluate the association between vitamin D status and the metabolic syndrome (MetS) in the elderly, as well as between vitamin D status and the components of MetS (i.e. serum glucose, triglycerides (TG), HDL cholesterol (HDL-C), waist circumference (WC), and blood pressure (BP)). Methods: The study was embedded in the Rotterdam Study, a population-based cohort of middle-aged and elderly adults. We analyzed data from 3240 people (median age 71.2 years) who did not have type 2 diabetes mellitus at baseline. Results: We found higher 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) concentrations associated with lower prevalence of MetS (odds ratio (OR); 95% CI: 0.61; 0.49, 0.77 for adequate levels (≥75 nmol/l) vs deficiency (<50 nmol/l). In addition, in analysis of the individual components, the ORs for adequate vs deficient vitamin D levels were: 0.66 (95% CI 0.53, 0.83) for elevated WC, 0.67 (95% CI 0.52, 0.86) for reduced HDL-C, 0.69 (95% CI 0.54, 0.88) for elevated TG, and 0.80 (95% CI 0.65, 0.99) for elevated fasting glucose. Vitamin D was not associated with elevated blood pressure, and ORs for adequacy vs deficiency were 0.82 (95% CI 0.65, 1.03). Conclusion: Higher 25(OH)D concentrations in the elderly are associated with lower prevalence of MetS and, in particular, with more beneficial HDL-C, TG, WC, and serum glucose. Since the prevalence of vitamin D deficiency is common worldwide and its risk increases with age, if causality is proven, benefits of improving vitamin D status among the elderly may be great.

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Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1530/EJE-14-0580, hdl.handle.net/1765/81029
Journal European Journal of Endocrinology
Vitezova, A, Zillikens, M.C, van Herpt, T.W, Sijbrands, E.J.G, Hofman, A, Uitterlinden, A.G, … Kiefte-de Jong, J.C. (2015). Vitamin D status and metabolic syndrome in the elderly: The Rotterdam Study. European Journal of Endocrinology, 172(3), 327–335. doi:10.1530/EJE-14-0580