Low vitamin D levels in Indian population. Is it related to lack of sun exposure?

Program: Abstracts - Orals, Featured Poster Presentations, and Posters
Session: MON 238-262-Vitamin D Action, Deficiency & Disorders
Bench to Bedside
Monday, June 17, 2013: 1:45 PM-3:45 PM
Expo Halls ABC (Moscone Center)

Poster Board MON-258
Vijay Gopal Eranki* and Prabhakara Sastry Eranki
Apollo Hospital, Hyderabad, India

The prevalence of vitamin D deficiency has been reported to range from 40% to over 70% depending on the study and the population being studied. Not much data is available regarding the prevalence of vitamin D deficiency in the Indian population.


To quantify the mean vitamin D levels in the Indian population.

Study Design and Methods

This study is a retrospective analysis of the vitamin D levels measured at a major medical center in Hyderabad, India. Vitamin D levels measured as a part of a routine health check were reviewed. A further analysis was done based on gender and geographic location of the population. Here we report the mean and range of the vitamin D levels. A comparison was done with vitamin D levels measured in international patients from Africa having a health check at the same hospital. We assumed a normal vitamin D level to be 30 ng/mL.


In a sample of 65 Indian females the mean vitamin D level was 12.12 ng/mL (range 3-47.5) while in 30 Indian males the level was 11.86 ng/mL (range 3-32.6). Among the Indians living abroad, mean level was 13.6 ng/mL (range 5-20). Among African females the mean vitamin D level was 24.31 ng/mL (range 3.5-50) and among African males the level was 21.62 ng/mL (range 7-40).


The vitamin D levels were found to be lower in Indians with a mean value of 12 ng/mL. In the African population, the mean vitamin D levels were 23 ng/mL. Though India and some of the African countries are at similar latitudes with similar amount of sun light, the vitamin D levels were almost double in the African population compared with Indians. Further investigation into the various factors affecting vitamin D levels in addition to sun light need to be sought.


The mean vitamin D level among Indian females was 12.12 ng/mL and among Indian males 11.86 ng/mL.

(1) Prevalence and correlates of vitamin D deficiency in US adults. Forrest KY, Stuhldreher WL. Nutr Res. 2011 Jan;31(1):48-54. (2) Vitamin D Status in Healthy Indians Aged 50 Years and Above. RK Marwaha, N Tandon, MK Garg, Ratnesh Kanwar, A Narang, A Sastry, A Saberwal, Kuntal Bandra. JAPI 2011.

Nothing to Disclose: VGE, PSE

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