Can Vitamin D Help Treat Asthma?

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An increasing number of studies are linking Vitamin D deficiency to a host of medical conditions. This includes heart disease, diabetes, and certain cancers.

Now, the case for vitamin D supplementation in the treatment of asthma is being made.

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The findings, which appear in the September issue of the Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, are based on a review of nearly 60 years’ worth of literature on vitamin D status and asthma. They found that vitamin D deficiency is linked to increased airway reactivity, lower lung functions, and worse asthma control. Risk factors for vitamin D deficiency include obesity, being African-American,  and living in Westernized countries, the researchers report. These are also populations known to be at higher risk for developing asthma.

Vitamin D supplementation may improve asthma control by blocking the cascade of inflammation-causing proteins in the lung, as well as increasing production of the protein interleukin-10, which has anti-inflammatory effects, the study authors suggest.