Saturday, March 21, 2009

Vitamin D fights the common cold: Arch Intern Med

Arch Intern Med -- Abstract: Association Between Serum 25-Hydroxyvitamin D Level and Upper Respiratory Tract Infection in the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, February 23, 2009, Ginde et al. 169 (4): 384

Can Vitamin D Cure the Common Cold?

vitamin D, colds, flu, influenza, sun, sunlight, sunshineIn the largest study yet of the association between vitamin D and respiratory infections, people with the lowest blood vitamin D levels reported having significantly more recent colds or cases of the flu. The risks were even higher for those with chronic respiratory disorders such as asthma.

Vitamin C has been used for the prevention of colds for decades, but little scientific evidence supports its effectiveness. In contrast, evidence has accumulated that vitamin D plays a key role in the immune system.

The wintertime deficiency of vitamin D, which the body produces in response to sunlight, has been implicated in the seasonal increase in colds and flu, and previous small studies have suggested an association between low blood levels of vitamin D and a higher risk of respiratory infections.

The newest study analyzed blood levels of vitamin D from almost 19,000 adult and adolescents, selected to be representative of the overall U.S. population.

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