Residential Greenness Alters Serum 25(OH)D Concentrations: A Longitudinal Cohort of Chinese Older Adults.
OBJECTIVES: Vitamin D deficiency is prevalent among older adults. We aimed to study whether residential greenness could alter serum 25(OH)D concentrations as a possible mechanism of residential greenness's positive health effects. DESIGN: A longitudinal cohort study. SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS: We included older adults aged ≥65 years from the Chinese Longitudinal Healthy Longevity Survey (CLHLS) with follow-up between 2012 and 2014. METHODS: We measured residential greenness by calculating annual average Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) in a 500 m radius by using satellite images around each participant's residential address. Serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) concentration was dichotomized into 2 categories: nondeficiency (≥50 nmol/L) and deficiency (<50 nmol/L). We used the generalized estimating equation to examine the relationship between annual average NDVI and serum 25(OH)D. RESULTS: We included 1336 participants in our analysis. The annual average NDVI was 0.49, and mean serum 25(OH)D was 43 nmol/L at baseline. Each 0.1-unit increase in annual average NDVI was associated with a 13% higher odds of vitamin D nondeficiency [95% confidence interval (CI): 1.01, 1.26]. The association was stronger among men [odds ratio (OR): 1.17, 95% CI: 1.02, 1.35] than women (OR: 1.08, 95% CI: 0.91, 1.29) and also stronger among those who were free of activities of daily living (ADL) disability at baseline (OR: 1.12, 95% CI: 1.00, 1.25). During the follow-up period, the participants who lived in greener areas were more likely to have an improved, rather than stable or deteriorated, vitamin D status (OR: 1.94, 95% CI: 1.51, 2.51). CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS: Our study suggests that higher levels of residential greenness are associated with higher serum 25(OH)D concentrations, which has implications for prevention of vitamin D deficiency among older adults.
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