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In a latest examine printed within the Journal Vitamins, researchers investigated the consequences of vitamin D/iron statuses and calcium consumption on lumbar cortical and trabecular bone in male adults aged 15-19.

Study: The Relationship between Bone Health Parameters, Vitamin D and Iron Status, and Dietary Calcium Intake in Young Males. Image Credit: Tatjana Baibakova/Shutterstock.comResearch: The Relationship between Bone Well being Parameters, Vitamin D and Iron Standing, and Dietary Calcium Consumption in Younger Males. Picture Credit score: Tatjana Baibakova/


There are a number of data gaps in analysis on the consequences of vitamins on bones. First, analysis has targeted solely on the cortical a part of the bones or their metabolism, not the trabecular. 

Second, the outcomes from research (most accomplished utilizing animal fashions) investigating the consequences of micronutrients, for example, vitamin D, on trabecular bone construction have to be clarified.

Third, the little analysis accomplished on human topics has targeted on the aged inhabitants, which is why it stays obscured how the supply of some vitamins is crucial for sustaining a wholesome skeleton in adults and for bone progress and growth throughout childhood.

One other problem with analysis on the unique results of vitamin D on bone well being is that the majority have relied on computed measures of a complete of 25(OH)D in serum as an alternative of the free fraction of 25(OH)D; the latter is a superior measure of vitamin D standing for bone well being. 

Moreover, regardless of proof of a cause-and-effect relationship between vitamin D (with calcium) and the danger of low-trauma bone fractures, the connection between vitamin D standing and bone mineral density (BMD) stays ambiguous.

Lastly, knowledge on the affiliation between iron deficiency (ID) and bone well being are restricted.

In regards to the examine

Within the current examine, researchers analyzed knowledge from 113 younger male topics who met the next standards: i) aged between 15-19; ii) engaged in some osteogenic sports activities (volleyball or ski leaping) or have been non-athletes (constituted the management group); iii) didn’t endure from any harm throughout the 12 months earlier than the examine; iv) had physique mass index (BMI) beneath 15 kg/m2 and above 37 kg/m2; and v) supplied knowledgeable consent.

Of those 113 members, 76 have been from Polish nationwide youth ski leaping and volleyball groups (28 ski jumpers, 48 volleyball gamers), and 37 have been non-athletes.

The workforce obtained the bone densitometry, lumbar backbone bone mineral obvious density (BMAD), and trabecular bone rating (TBS) measurements utilizing dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA).

Moreover, they evaluated physique iron shops (Fe_S) based mostly on serum ferritin and soluble transferrin receptor (sTfR) ranges.

Moreover, they decided every participant’s dietary calcium consumption utilizing a semi-quantitative meals frequency questionnaire.


The outcomes confirmed a optimistic relationship between BMAD and Z-score and the vitamin D serum ranges, with the affiliation being stronger for the free fraction 25 (OH) D than the generally used complete fraction.

Free 25(OH)D defined 25% of the overall 32% of BMAD variation within the lumbar backbone measurements of the sports activities group.

It’s noteworthy right here that the free fraction constitutes solely 0.1–2% of the overall hydroxy vitamin D within the human physique, whereas the remaining circulates within the blood sure to albumin and primarily with vitamin D-binding proteins (VDBPs), implying, no less than theoretically, that the connection between each ought to be comparable throughout all people.

Nevertheless, on this examine, the correlation between these two fractions within the athletes was decrease than controls (0.77 vs. 0.93). Due to this fact, the authors presumed that bodily train impacts the overall hydroxy vitamin D fraction by influencing the VDBP ranges.

Additional, the authors famous that 22% and 15% of the athletes and controls, respectively, have been iron-deficient.

Whereas their ferritin and iron shops concurrently correlated with BMAD, no such correlation emerged with the Z-score within the sports activities group, which, to some extent, was attributable to the dearth of adjustment of the Z-score to top.

Of the overall 32% of BMAD variation noticed within the lumbar backbone measurements of the sports activities group, 7% was defined by ferritin, suggesting it’s a extra dependable indicator of bone mineralization in athletes than the calculated iron shops.

Moreover, the standard calcium consumption didn’t influence BMAD in each teams. Because the noticed complete fraction of 25(OH)D was low in each teams, it may have modulated calcium absorption within the intestine.

Throughout puberty, excessive calcium retention effectivity doubtless compensates for low calcium consumption.

Nevertheless, extended vitamin D deficiency (even average) in maturity might severely impair dietary calcium absorption within the intestine, leading to elevated bone loss.

The authors discovered no relationship between the dietary elements analyzed on this examine and the trabecular construction of bones.

Though each BMAD and Z-score correlated with the TBS within the controls, the correlation coefficients differed, whereas no such correlation existed within the sports activities group.

Furthermore, the “Fractures” issue was comparable in examined teams and impartial of mineralization and TBS within the lumbar backbone, suggesting that it might be impartial of the extent of bodily exercise and related overloads.


The outcomes of the current examine confirmed the optimistic affect of regular vitamin D and iron standing on cortical bone standing in bodily energetic athletes.

Of their bone mineralization assessments, the free 25(OH)D fraction appeared as a greater indicator than the overall 25(OH)D and ferritin than calculated physique iron shops.

Past dietary elements, outcomes steered that their bone mineralization assessments ought to be adjusted-for-height BMAD, not uncooked aBMD knowledge.

Moreover, in these athletes, osteogenic bodily workouts (e.g., jumps) additionally presumably have an effect on trabecular bone.

Journal reference:

  • Malczewska-Lenczowska, J.; Surała, O.; Granda, D.; Szczepańska, B.; Czaplicki, A.; Kubacki, R. (2024) The Relationship between Bone Well being Parameters, Vitamin D and Iron Standing, and Dietary Calcium Consumption in Younger Males. Vitamins 16, 215. doi:


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