A new US study reports that many young physically active college students have deficient blood vitamin D levels.
The observational study measured blood vitamin D concentrations, body composition (body mass index) and physical fitness (maximum rate of oxygen consumed during exercise and muscular strength) of 39 students with an average age of 23 years (1). The study results showed that 51% of the participants had vitamin D levels below 35 ng/ml. While students with higher vitamin D levels showed a better cardiovascular fitness, participants with higher BMI had lower vitamin D levels.
The researchers commented that while adequate vitamin D status has already been shown to relate to improved muscle function, muscle strength, and cardiovascular health in both adult and elderly populations, the new findings show that vitamin D might affect fitness in young, healthy populations.