Vitamin D status and its associated factors of free living Malay adults in a tropical country, Malaysia
Vitamin D status is influenced by sun exposure, geographic latitude, daily outdoor activities, body surface exposed to sunlight and dietary intakes. Malaysia, is sunny all year round. However, the vitamin D status of this population especially among the healthy and free living adults is not known. Therefore a study of vitamin D status and associated factors was initiated among an existing Malay cohort in Kuala Lumpur. A total of 380 subjects were sampled to have their vitamin D status assessed using 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D). A short questionnaire enquiring socio-demographic characteristics, exposure to sunlight and clothing style was administered. Their mean age was 48.5 ± 5.2 years and the mean 25(OH)D for males and females were 56.2 ± 18.9 nmol/L and 36.2 ± 13.4 nmol/L respectively. There were significant positive correlation for sun exposure score (r = 0.27, p < 0.001) and negative correlation for sun protection score (r = −0.41, p < 0.001) with 25(OH)D levels. In the logistic regression model, females (OR = 2.93; 95% CI: 1.17, 7.31), BMI (1.1; 1.03, 1.20) and sun exposure score (0.998; 0.996, 0.999) were significantly associated with vitamin D status as represented by 25(OH)D levels. Our findings show that obesity, lifestyle behaviours and clothing style are directly associated with our participants especially females’ low vitamin D status.
► Malay women in urban Malaysia had low vitamin D status. ► Sun exposure is positively associated with 25(OH) D level. ► Sun protection score is negatively correlated with 25(OH) D level. ► Clothing styles are directly associated with females’ low 25(OH) D level. ► Body Mass Index is significantly associated with vitamin D status.
Journal: Journal of Photochemistry and Photobiology B: Biology - Volume 104, Issue 3, 2 September 2011, Pages 444–448