Vitamin D and Immunity: What does the Research Say?

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Immunity Green Road Sign with dramatic clouds and sky.Most of us know that vitamin D (also known as the sunshine vitamin) plays an important role in bone health. However, did you know research on vitamin d and immunity shows people with low levels are more likely to catch the common cold and the flu than those with sufficient amounts?

What else does the research say?

Research on Vitamin D and Immunity

One study of 19,000 subjects related to vitamin D and immunity found that people with blood levels below 30 ng/ml were more likely to experience an upper respiratory infection even when adjusting for variables such as season, age, gender and weight.

People deficient in vitamin D with asthma were five times more likely to get sick than their counterparts with healthy vitamin D levels.

A recent study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found a 42 percent decrease in the incidence of influenza by those taking a supplemental dose of 1200 IU of vitamin D.

Cooper Clinic recommends a minimum of 2000 IU of vitamin D3 taken daily with food.

Improving Vitamin D Absorption

Vitamin D is a fat soluble vitamin, so it needs a bit of fat to be absorbed.  If you take vitamin D supplements, take with a meal that contains some healthy fat.  This can increase absorption by 50%!

Each of the Cooper Complete multivitamins contain 2000 IU of vitamin D3. Cooper Complete also offers a stand-alone D3 of 1000 IU in each softgel.

Are You D Deficient?

Vitamin D deficiency is the most common nutritional deficiency worldwide. In general, lower vitamin D levels are a result of an increase in multiple factors such as:

  • sun avoidance
  • using sun protection
  • skin pigmentation
  • poor dietary and supplement intake
  • malabsorption syndromes, obesity and medication use.

Do you know your vitamin D level?

A simple blood test can provide the answer. The 25 hydroxyl vitamin D level should be greater than 30 ng/ml as mentioned previously, but some doctors prefer to see your lab value over 50 ng/ml.

If it is determined that you have low levels, approximately 1000 IU of vitamin D can increase your level up to 10 points.

After starting a vitamin D supplement regimen, blood levels should be rechecked in 3 months until the target level of vitamin D is reached and then checked at your annual exam.

Vitamin D in Your Diet

You can find vitamin D in some foods which have been fortified with D, like:

But it can be difficult to meet your needs with food. For many, swallowing a Cooper Complete Vitamin D3 softgel is a more pleasant alternative to decreasing the risk of a winter cold.

Article provided by Cathy Sides, Director of Customer Relations, Cooper Concepts Inc.

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