Use Vitamin D to Prevent Coughs and Colds, New Study Says
People who supplement vitamin D are slightly less likely to come down with a cold or cough, a new study says. This study, published in BMJ (the British Medical Journal) looked at 25 studies on thousands of people to find the net effect of vitamin D supplementation.
This new study, called a meta-analysis, carefully compared people with different types of vitamin D supplementation (daily, weekly, or single doses of a large amount). It found that in general, daily or weekly dosing works better than the single large dose format.
The benefits were only seen in people with low levels of vitamin D — however this level of vitamin D deficiency is now epidemic among Americans, according to another recent study in the Archives of Internal Medicine.
African Americans are the most likely group to be deficient in vitamin D, however the problem occurs across all groups in America. One likely reason is the widespread use of sunscreen and long-sleeved clothing in the sun, which normally creates vitamin D in the skin.
I recommend taking an additional 400 IU of vitamin D per day since it is extremely safe, there are many other benefits beyond bone health, and vitamin D deficiency is so widespread.
Specifically, I recommend vitamin D3 (the type found in health food stores) because the body can use it more easily than the synthetic form, vitamin D2 found in drugstores.
Why would large doses of vitamin D not be effective? The study suggests that a sudden large dose disrupts the body’s own mechanism for making and maintaining vitamin D. In addition, I suspect that they were the 50,000 IU dose of vitamin D2 usually prescribed, since D3 is not typically provided in these large doses as a one-time supplement.
So if your doctor prescribes a one-time supplement of 50,000 units of vitamin D, respectfully show him or her this article. It is more effective when used over a longer period of time through daily doses in boosting and improving your overall health. Vitamin D3 is available inexpensively at health food stores, or pharmacies.
Research Study on Vitamin D : http://www.bmj.com/content/356/bmj.i6583