Dutch researchers have discovered a link between vitamin D deficiency and declining physical performance in people over the age of 65. The decline in physical abilities may not be the simple result of aging.

In the study, researchers at VU University Medical Center in Amsterdam analyzed data on 979 seniors, who were all 65 years or older, and were involved in the ongoing Longitudinal Aging Study Amsterdam. The researchers found that 47 percent of study participants had low vitamin D levels and at the start of the study had poorer physical performance than their peers with good vitamin D levels. And over the course of three years, those with a vitamin D deficiency were twice as likely as their peers to exhibit a decline in physical performance. Performance was measured by everyday tasks such as how long it takes to get up from a chair. 

The research was reported in the June issue of the  Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

For more details from Reuters, go to: http://www.sciam.com/article.cfm?alias=more-vitamin-d-can-put-mo&chanId=sa003&modsrc=reuters