Vitamin D May Help Protect From FLU – read this today

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I received this article from the RSOE Alert system in my mail today,  the organization that has been monitoring the swine flu.  This is definitely worth sharing with everyone you can.

Here is part of the article… full article located here: http://www.idemc.org/read/index.php?pageid=news_read&news_id=160

The most important thing you need to know about the upcoming flu season, beyond the public health messages about washing your hands and staying home if you’re sick, is that taking enough vitamin D to bring your blood levels up to 40-60ng/ml 25-OH may help protect you from getting the flu, as well as other colds and respiratory infections. That means taking somewhere between 2,000 and 5,000 IU of supplemental vitamin D3 a day for the average adult in temperate zones, during the fall and winter. Your doctor can test you before and after you begin supplementing, if you want to be sure you’re getting enough. Stop Aging Now has also arranged for discounted home testing kits to help you monitor your vitamin D levels.

John Cannell, MD, founder and executive director of the Vitamin D Council, a non-profit dedicated to spreading the word about the importance getting adequate vitamin D through a combination of sun exposure, supplementation and food sources, also suggests having enough 50,000 IU capsules of vitamin D3  on hand to take at the first sign of  the flu. He recommends 1,000 IU per day for every pound of body weight.

In August, says Dr. Cannell, researchers at the University of Auckland found that a single dose of 500,000 IU (half a million units) did no harm to the elderly and a month after the dose, their vitamin D levels were in the optimal range and two months after, they were deficient again. And by the way, Dr. Cannell, will be getting his flu shot, too, though he feels it won’t work quite as well considering his high levels of vitamin D. He feels that the risk of contracting Guillain-Barré syndrome from the vaccine is very low, considering his blood levels of vitamin D, and that even though the vaccine may not works as well due to the protective effects of vitamin D, that any source of immunity against the flu is a good thing. Research has been accumulating on the potential of vitamin D to prevent infections and possibly even treat them. But the implications of vitamin D’s possible impact on seasonal influenza are a fascinating epidemiological story and one that could prove to have a “profound effect on its prevention” according to a study published in the Journal of Virology in May of 2008.

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