Reprinted with the kind permission of Life Extension.
December 15 2017. The December 2017 issue of Nutrients published the finding of German researchers of a significant presence of vitamin D deficiency in an older population.
The current study examined data from 1,079 participants, aged 65 to 93 years, in the Cooperative Health Research in the Region of Augsburg-Age (KORA-Age) study conducted in 2008/2009. The KORA Cooperative Health Research platform has evaluated the health of thousands of people living in the Augsburg area of Southern Germany for the past 30 years to understand the effects of environmental, lifestyle and genetic factors. "In this context, we were also interested in examining the micronutrient status of older adults, including vitamins" explained lead researcher Barbara Thorand of the Institute of Epidemiology, Helmholtz Zentrum München. "So far, in Germany, research data on this topic has been relatively thin on the ground."
Blood samples collected in 2009 were analyzed for vitamins B12 and D, folic acid and iron. It was found half had suboptimal levels of vitamin D. "The results are very clear," reported first author Romy Conzade. "Fifty-two percent of the examined older adults had vitamin D levels below 50 nmol/L [20 ng/mL] and thus had a suboptimal vitamin D status."
In addition, 27.3% of the participants had suboptimal vitamin B12 levels, 11% had low levels of iron and 8.7% had inadequate folate levels.
"Our study also shows that regular intake of vitamin-containing supplements goes along with improved levels of the respective vitamins," Dr Thorand noted.
"By means of blood analyses, the current study has confirmed the critical results of the last German National Nutrition Survey (NVS II), which revealed an insufficient intake of micronutrients from foods,” stated coauthor Annette Peters. “This is a highly relevant issue, particularly in light of our growing aging population."