Assessment of vitamin D concentration in non-supplemented professional athletes and healthy adults during the winter months in the UK: implications for skeletal muscle function.

a Muscle Metabolism and Physiology Research group, Research Institute for Sport and Exercise Sciences , Liverpool John Moores University , Liverpool , UK.
Journal of Sports Sciences (Impact Factor: 2.08). 10/2012; DOI: 10.1080/02640414.2012.733822
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Abstract The current study implemented a two-part design to (1) assess the vitamin D concentration of a large cohort of non-vitamin D supplemented UK-based athletes and 30 age-matched healthy non-athletes and (2) to examine the effects of 5000 IU · day(-1) vitamin D(3) supplementation for 8-weeks on musculoskeletal performance in a placebo controlled trial. Vitamin D concentration was determined as severely deficient if serum 25(OH)D < 12.5 nmol · l(-1), deficient 12.5-30 nmol · l(-1) and inadequate 30-50 nmol · l(-1). We demonstrate that 62% of the athletes (38/61) and 73% of the controls (22/30) exhibited serum total 25(OH)D < 50 nmol · l(-1). Additionally, vitamin D supplementation increased serum total 25(OH)D from baseline (mean ± SD = 29 ± 25 to 103 ± 25 nmol · l(-1), P = 0.0028), whereas the placebo showed no significant change (53 ± 29 to 74 ± 24 nmol · l(-1), P = 0.12). There was a significant increase in 10 m sprint times (P = 0.008) and vertical-jump (P = 0.008) in the vitamin D group whereas the placebo showed no change (P = 0.587 and P = 0.204 respectively). The current data supports previous findings that athletes living at Northerly latitudes (UK = 53° N) exhibit inadequate vitamin D concentrations (<50 nmol · l(-1)). Additionally the data suggests that inadequate vitamin D concentration is detrimental to musculoskeletal performance in athletes. Future studies using larger athletic groups are now warranted.

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