Predictors of Serum Vitamin D Levels in African American and European American Men in Chicago

Adam B. Murphy, Brian Kelley, Yaw A. Nyame, Iman K. Martin, Demetria J. Smith, Lauren Castaneda, Gregory J. Zagaja, Courtney M.P. Hollowell, Rick A. Kittles

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


Vitamin D deficiency is epidemiologically linked to prostate, breast, and colon cancer. When compared with European American (EA) men, African American (AA) men have increased risk of prostate cancer, but few studies evaluate vitamin D status in AA men. The authors evaluate the biological and environmental predictors of vitamin D deficiency in AA and EA men in Chicago, Illinois, a low ultraviolet radiation environment. Blood samples were collected from 492 men, aged between 40 and 79 years, from urology clinics at three hospitals in Chicago, along with demographic and medical information, body mass index, and skin melanin content using a portable narrow-band reflectometer. Vitamin D intake and ultraviolet radiation exposure were assessed using validated questionnaires. The results demonstrated that Black race, cold season of blood draw, elevated body mass index, and lack of vitamin D supplementation increase the risk of vitamin D deficiency. Supplementation is a high-impact, modifiable risk factor. Race and sunlight exposure should be taken into account for recommended daily allowances for vitamin D intake.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)420-426
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican journal of men's health
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 2012


  • health care issues
  • health inequality/disparity
  • health promotion and disease prevention
  • nutrition
  • preventive medicine
  • public health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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