Associations between serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D, body mass index and body fat composition among Emirati population: Results from the UAE healthy future study

Fatme AlAnouti, Amar Sabri Ahmad, Laila Abdel Wareth, Ayesha Al Dhaheri, Abderrahim Oulhaj, Abdulla Al Junaibi, Abdullah Al Naeemi, Aisha Al Hamiz, Ayesha Al Hosani, Eiman Al Zaabi, Fatima Mezhal, Fatma Al Maskari, Habiba Alsafar, Jamila Yaaqoub, Marina Al Bastaki, Mohammed Al Houqani, Naima Oumeziane, Nirmin F. Juber, Scott Sherman, Syed M. ShahTeeb Alsharid, Thekra Al Zaabi, Tom Loney, Wael Al Mahmeed, Abdishakur Abdulle, Raghib Ali

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: Vitamin D deficiency and insufficiency are highly prevalent among several populations across the globe. Numerous studies have shown a significant correlation between body-mass-index (BMI) and Vitamin D status, however, some results differed according to ethnicity. Despite the abundance of sunshine throughout the year, vitamin D deficiency is prominent in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). In this study, we analyzed the UAE Healthy Future Study (UAEHFS) pilot data to investigate the association between serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) and % body fat (BF) composition as well as BMI. Material and methods: Data from a total of 399 Emirati men and women aged ≥ 18 years were analyzed. Serum 25(OH)D and standard measures of weight and height were included in the analyses. Vitamin D deficiency was defined as serum 25(OH)D concentration<20 ng/ml. Multivariate quantile regression models were performed to explore the relationship between serum 25(OH)D levels and % BF composition and BMI correspondingly. Results: There were 281 (70.4%) males and 118 (29.6%) females included in this study. More than half of the study participants had vitamin D insufficiency (52.4%), and nearly a third had vitamin D deficiency (30.3%); while only 17.3% had optimal levels. A statistically significant negative association between serum 25(OH) D levels and % BF composition was observed at intermediate percentiles while a statistically significant negative association between serum 25(OH)D and BMI was only observed at the median (50th percentile). Conclusion: The study findings support the association between low serum 25(OH) D levels (low vitamin D status) and high % BF composition and high BMI among adult Emiratis. Further longitudinal data from the prospective UAEHFS could better elucidate the relationship between serum 25(OH) D levels, % BF composition, and BMI in the context of various health outcomes among this population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number954300
JournalFrontiers in Endocrinology
StatePublished - Oct 10 2022


  • body fat
  • body mass index
  • quantile regression
  • serum 25 hydroxyvitamin D
  • vitamin D

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism


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