Physical performance and serum 25(OH)vitamin D status in community dwelling old mobility limited adults: A cross-sectional study

  • Åsa von Berens
  • T. Cederholm
  • R. A. Fielding
  • T. Gustafsson
  • D. Kirn
  • J. Laussen
  • M. Nydahl
  • T. G. Travison
  • K. Reid
  • A. Koochek



To examine the potential association between serum 25(OH) vitamin D and the performance on the Short Physical Performance Battery (SPPB) including the sub-components; five repeated chair stands test, 4 meters walk test and balance in older mobility-limited community-dwelling men and women.


A cross sectional study was performed in American and Swedish subjects who were examined for potential participation in a combined exercise and nutrition intervention trial. Logistic regression analysis and linear regression analyses were performed to evaluate the association for 25(OH)D with the overall score on the SBBP, chair stand, gait speed and balance.


Community-dwelling (mean age 77.6 ± 5.3 years) mobility limited American (n=494) and Swedish (n=116) females (59%) and males.


The SPPB (0-12 points) includes chair stand (s), gait speed (m/s) and a balance test. Mobility limitation i.e., SPPB score ≤ 9 was an inclusion criterion. A blood sample was obtained to measure serum 25(OH)vitamin D concentrations.


No clear association of 25(OH)D with SPPB scores was detected either when 25(OH)D was assessed as a continuous variable or when categorized according to serum concentrations of <50, 50-75 or <75 nmol/L. However, when analyzing the relationship between 25(OH)D and seconds to perform the chair stands, a significant quadratic relationship was observed. Thus, at serum levels of 25(OH)D above 74 nmol/L, higher concentrations appeared to be advantageous for the chair stand test, whereas for serum levels below 74 nmol/L this association was not observed.


This cross- sectional study lacked clear association between serum 25(OH)D and physical performance in mobility limited adults. A potentially interesting observation was that at higher serum levels of 25(OH)D a better performance on the chair stand test was indicated.


older adults physical function serum 25(OH)D community dwelling SPPB 


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Copyright information

© Serdi and Springer-Verlag France 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Åsa von Berens
    • 1
  • T. Cederholm
    • 1
  • R. A. Fielding
    • 2
  • T. Gustafsson
    • 3
  • D. Kirn
    • 2
  • J. Laussen
    • 2
  • M. Nydahl
    • 4
  • T. G. Travison
    • 5
    • 6
    • 7
  • K. Reid
    • 2
  • A. Koochek
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Public Health and Caring Sciences/Clinical Nutrition and MetabolismUppsala UniversityUppsalaSweden
  2. 2.Nutrition, Exercise Physiology, and Sarcopenia Laboratory, Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on AgingTufts UniversityBostonUSA
  3. 3.Department of Laboratory MedicineKarolinska InstituteStockholmSweden
  4. 4.Department of Food, Nutrition and DieteticsUppsala UniversityUppsalaSweden
  5. 5.Institute for Aging ResearchHebrew SeniorLifeBoston, MAUSA
  6. 6.Division of GerontologyHarvard Medical SchoolBostonUSA
  7. 7.Beth Israel Deaconess Medical CenterBostonUSA

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