Girls with high level of vitamin D have stronger muscles

June 15, 2018, University of Southern Denmark

Girls are stronger with higher levels of vitamin D, but this association is not found in boys. These are the results from a new large study from the Odense Child Cohort, recently published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism.

According to the study's first author, medical student Rada Faris Al-Jwadi, girls with low D have a 70 percent increased risk of being among the lowest 10 percent in a test for .

The researchers also found that girls were stronger if their vitamin D level was more than 50 nmol/L. The most surprising finding was that this difference was only evident in girls and not in boys.

The study shows no association with vitamin D levels in mothers during pregnancy or in the umbilical cord at birth. This leads to the conclusion that there is no prenatal programming effect of muscle . We are talking about a more immediate effect of vitamin D, says Rada Faris Al-Jwadi.

According to Henrik Thybo Christesen, Professor at H.C. Andersen children's hospital, Odense University Hospital and University of Southern Denmark, the study offers no explanation for the difference between boys and girls. But other studies on children and adults have shown that vitamin D increases the levels of IGF-I, which is a growth factor that increases muscle strength.

Also, the IGF-I level is different in boys and girls, which could be part of the explanation. Based on this data, it is not possible to conclude that girls will get stronger muscles if they get more vitamin D through food, as supplement pills or via sun exposure, which are some of the most important sources of vitamin D.

In the study, the muscle strength of 881 five-year-old children in Odense Child Cohort was measured with a standardized test for hand grip strength. For 499 of the children, vitamin D status analyses were done. Low vitamin D levels were defined as serum 25OH-vitamin D below 50 nmol/L. The statistical analyses were adjusted for height, weight and body fat percentage and were statistically highly significant. This means that the association wasn't due to being overweight and thereby having lower vitamin D and lower strength. It also means that it wasn't because were less physically active. The was calculated based on skin fold measurements.

Explore further: High vitamin D levels linked to lower cholesterol in children

More information: Rada Faris Al-Jwadi et al, S-25OHD is Associated with Hand Grip Strength and Myopathy at Five Years in Girls: An Odense Child Cohort Study, The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism (2018). DOI: 10.1210/jc.2018-00281

Related Stories

High vitamin D levels linked to lower cholesterol in children

June 7, 2018
There is a link between higher serum vitamin D levels and lower plasma cholesterol levels in primary school children, new research from the University of Eastern Finland shows. Children whose serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels ...

Fewer indications of ADHD in children whose mothers took vitamin D during pregnancy

October 10, 2016
Children of mothers who took vitamin D during pregnancy with resultant high levels of the vitamin in the umbilical blood have fewer symptoms of ADHD at the age of two and a half years.

Higher vitamin D levels in pregnancy could help babies become stronger

January 3, 2014
Children are likely to have stronger muscles if their mothers had a higher level of vitamin D in their body during pregnancy, according to new research from the Medical Research Council Lifecourse Epidemiology Unit (MRC LEU) ...

Vitamin D deficiency and insufficiency impacts children's risk for severe forearm fractures

March 6, 2018
Children who are vitamin D deficient have a greater risk of having more severe forearm fractures requiring surgical treatment, according to a new study presented today at the 2018 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of ...

Lack of vitamin D can sideline college football players

January 23, 2018
(HealthDay)—Nearly 60 percent of college football players have low levels of vitamin D, a new study suggests.

Recommended for you

Juul e-cigarettes pose addiction risk for young users, study finds

October 19, 2018
Teens and young adults who use Juul brand e-cigarettes are failing to recognize the product's addictive potential, despite using it more often than their peers who smoke conventional cigarettes, according to a new study by ...

Self-lubricating latex could boost condom use: study

October 17, 2018
A perpetually unctuous, self-lubricating latex developed by a team of scientists in Boston could boost the use of condoms, they reported Wednesday in the journal Royal Society Open Science.

Engineered enzyme eliminates nicotine addiction in preclinical tests

October 17, 2018
Scientists at Scripps Research have successfully tested a potential new smoking-cessation treatment in rodents.

Nutrition has a greater impact on bone strength than exercise

October 17, 2018
One question that scientists and fitness experts alike would love to answer is whether exercise or nutrition has a bigger positive impact on bone strength.

How healthy will we be in 2040?

October 17, 2018
A new scientific study of forecasts and alternative scenarios for life expectancy and major causes of death in 2040 shows all countries are likely to experience at least a slight increase in lifespans. In contrast, one scenario ...

Study finds evidence of intergenerational transmission of trauma among ex-POWs from the Civil War

October 16, 2018
A trio of researchers affiliated with the National Bureau of Economic Research has found evidence that suggests men who were traumatized while POWs during the U.S. Civil War transmitted that trauma to their offspring—many ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.