New research published in Journal of the American Geriatrics Society has found that vitamin D status is related to daily sleep duration among older adults.
In elderly populations, vitamin D is suggested to be important in helping to maintain balance, reducing the risk of fractures, and keeping mental health intact.
But does vitamin D effect sleep duration in this population?
Preliminary studies suggest vitamin D shares a link with certain sleep disorders and may be helpful in maintaining a full night’s sleep. Until now, no studies have looked at vitamin D’s relationship to sleep duration, or sleep in general, among the elderly.
Researchers from South Korea recently recruited 1,614 healthy older adults between the ages of 60 and 80 years old. They measured vitamin D levels, age, gender, BMI, smoking and alcohol habits, daily sun exposure and sleep duration.
The participants were grouped based on their reported daily sleep duration. The four groups consisted of those who reported 4 or less hours, 5-6 hours, 7-8 hours, and 9 or more hours of sleep each day.
Their analysis showed that all individuals with 5 or more hours of sleep had significantly higher vitamin D status compared to those who got 4 or less hours of sleep each day.
The average vitamin D status of the group with the highest amount of sleep per day was 20.7 ng/ml compared to 17.7 ng/ml among the group with the lowest amount of daily sleep.
“Serum vitamin D level is positively associated with self-reported daily sleep duration in elderly Korean individuals,” the researchers stated.
“These results suggest that inadequate sleep duration may be associated with lower vitamin D levels in elderly adults.”