Vitamin D Fights Colds and Flu
A recent Japanese study has revealed some interesting, and unexpected results for the effectiveness of vitamin D in the prevention of flu and asthma.
The study revealed that people taking vitamin D were 58% less likely to catch Influenza A, and supplementation dramatically reduced asthma symptoms in asthmatic children.
The idea for the study, study chief Dr Mitsuyoshi Urashima said, came from an earlier study looking at whether vitamin D could help prevent the bone-thinning disease osteoporosis. The researchers in that
study noticed that people taking vitamin D were three times less likely to report cold and flu symptoms.
This led Urashima, of Jikei University School of Medicine, Tokyo, and colleagues to randomly assign a group of 6- to 15-year-old children to take vitamin D3 supplements or an inactive placebo during a cold and flu season. During the study, conducted between December 2008 and March 2009, 31 of 167 children taking placebo caught influenza A, the most common form of the virus, compared with only 18 of 167 taking vitamin D.
The vitamin D group was 58 percent less likely to catch influenza A, the researchers report in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
“The vitamin D group was 58% less likely to
catch influenza A…”
Vitamin D also appeared to suppress asthma attacks in children with a history of asthma. Two children taking vitamin D had asthma attacks during the study, compared to 12 children taking placebo.
The Spinal Centre’s Comment:
The reduction of influenza cases through natural supplementation is a great thing.
The flu shot that many Australians get jabbed with yearly is not only dangerous for many people, but isn’t as effective as it’s made out to be.
In a lot of cases, the vaccine is not effective in protecting again influenza. The vaccine is geared only against specific strains, and many of the side-effects (including the flu, fever, nausea, aching muscles etc.) can be more dangerous than the flu it’s meant to be protecting against.
That’s not to mention the inclusion of mercury (in the form of thimerosal – a preservative) in the vaccine.
This study illustrates the importance of good nutrition, and how simple health choices can protect you against disease and illness.
Vitamin D is hugely important for our health. Not enough emphasis has been placed on this vital nutrient.
Our main source of Vitamin D is the sun. Unfortunately, with all the limelight being put on the prevention of skin cancer, we tend to smother ourselves in sunscreen and cover every inch of skin when we’re out. Plus our lives are becoming increasingly sedative and we’re spending more and more time inside. All this equals vitamin D deficiency.
Although over-exposure to the sun can be dangerous, we do need some sun everyday to keep our vitamin D levels topped up. For most of us, this can be difficult. That’s why you need to supplement.
Before you rush out and buy the first vitamin D supplement you can find, there’s a few things you need to know first.
- Not all vitamin D’s are created equal. Vitamin D3, or cholecalciferol, is more rapidly absorbed by the body and more potent than vitamin D2, or ergocalciferol, the form often found in many inferior, cheap brands.
- You need to include vitamin D in your diet too. Vitamin D is found readily in fish, green veggies, fruit and some dairy. Those who have milk allergies, are lactose intolerant or follow a vegan diet are likely to be vitamin D deficient.
- Some groups of people require more vitamin D than others. Dark skinned people tend to need more sun than fair-skinned people, as do older adults, as the ability to synthesize vitamin D in the skin is reduced with age. Anyone with a genetic predisposition to absorb less vitamin D will also need more.
- Too much vitamin D can be toxic. Though there is no evidence that vitamin D generated by the body from sun exposure can contribute to vitamin D toxicity as the body regulate’s its production – supplements are an entirely different matter. This is why you need to get tested.
Vitamin D Level testing is the only true way to determine your vitamin D levels. This test, available online from The Spinal Centre, will show whether you are getting enough vitamin D, how much you need, and what to take to achieve optimal vitamin D levels.
This is one of the most important tests you can have. Vitamin D is crucial to our health. When our vitamin D levels fall, our health suffers. Invest in one of these tests now and experience better health.
What else can I do?
Book an appointment with our Naturopath. This in-depth consultation will identify key areas of your health that need to be addressed, and will provide you with the information, recommendations and product guides to achieve optimal health.
If you like this article be sure to visit the Spinal Centre website at www.thespinalcentre.com.au and view more content by Dr. Hooper and the Spinal Rehabilitation Team.
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