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Vitamin D Against Asthma

A group of laboratory based researchers found that adding vitamin D to blood samples from 28 asthma patients lowered the measurable levels of interleukin-17.A group of laboratory based researchers found that adding vitamin D to blood samples from 28 asthma patients lowered the measurable levels of interleukin-17, a key immune system component that is over-active during asthma attacks. Now, the same British scientists who published their findings on vitamin D and interleukin-17 online on May 15, 2013, in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology are conducting clinical trials to see if vitamin D supplements can actually ease asthma symptoms in patients. The investigators, from Britain’s King's College in London, are focusing on patients whose asthma symptoms don’t respond to steroids and who produce about seven times more interleukin-17 than other asthma patients. Earlier studies have established that high blood levels of “D” are associated with improved asthma control, but the benefits of dietary supplementation with “D” have not been looked at in connection with asthma. The lead researcher, Professor Catherine Hawrylowicz, was quoted by the BBC as saying that the practice of covering up in the sun and using sunscreens may have increased asthma rates. She suggested that treating asthma patients with “D” could help those who are steroid-resistant respond to the medication or enable patients who do respond to steroids to take lower doses.

C.M. Hawrylowicz et al, “Enhanced production of IL-17A in patients with severe asthma is inhibited by 1α,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 in a glucocorticoid-independent fashion,” The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, May 15, 2013  doi:pii: S0091-6749(13)00526-5. 10.1016/j.jaci.2013.03.037. [Epub ahead of print]

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Reader Comments (4)

Were there any recommendations regarding optimal vitamin D levels in patients with asthma? Or for when to screen for deficiencies?
August 9, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMollie Reidland
Wondering how much vitamin D they recommend per day. I take 3,000 units but know people taking 5,000 - 10,000
August 9, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAC
Thank you again for this very informative article. I am interested in how much vitiams D one should take each day. Is it possible to take the entire dosage for the week in one day?
Michael C. Craven
Chicago Divorce Lawyer
August 9, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMichael C Craven
I became a believer in vitamin D when I began taking it for my diabetes. I noticed a significant improvement in my blood glucose at that time. What I didn't expect was its ability to help reduce the intensity of my allergy symptoms. Allergies which were horribly intense dissipated greatly. I did further research discovering that vitamin D had shown promise of relieving allergies. This pinpoints the possibility of reducing asthma symptoms. I encouraged my daughter who has asthma, to begin taking vitamin D and she noticed a drop in the frequency of her attacks, To understand how much vitamin D one should take you need to have your vitamin D levels checked and not be afraid to raise your levels accordingly. Be aware of the nutrients that work with vitamin D as well such as zinc, magnesium vitamins K1 and K2, vitamin A and boron. One good source of vitamin D research is the Vitamin D council. That is where I get a lot of information.
August 26, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMary Titus

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