Liberty Planet Weblog

Vitamin D protects against colds, flu and viral infections

Posted on: June 14, 2012

(NaturalNews) Vitamin D is an essential cofactor in the prevention of a host of conditions ranging from cancer to diabetes, dementia and cardiovascular disease. The sunshine vitamin is a critical part of our evolution as it has been circulating in our ancestral blood for countless generations due to plentiful sun exposure. It has only been the past half-century that we have lathered ourselves with sunscreen and hidden in buildings away from the vitamin D producing effects of the sun, following the sage advice of doctors and other misinformed medical professionals.

Vitamin D is rapidly emerging as one of the most researched natural compounds demonstrated to promote human health. More evidence in support of the prohormone is provided by researchers in Spain publishing the result of their work in the Journal of Leukocyte Biology. Scientists have found that insufficient levels of vitamin D are related to a deficiency in our innate immune defenses that protect us from infections, neoplasias, or autoimmune diseases, and can effectively shield us from the common cold and influenza during winter months.

Vitamin D levels diminish with age, increasing risk for colds and influenza

To perform the analysis and gather data for this study, researchers compared the changes in the blood levels of vitamin D among three groups of healthy subjects: youth (aged 20 to 30), middle-aged (aged 31 to 59), and elderly (aged 60 to 86). The scientists found decreased levels of vitamin D with aging, likely due to decreased exposure to the sun and a decline in the native ability of skin receptors to produce precursor levels of vitamin D, commonly found among individuals above the age of 40.

The research team found that the level of circulating vitamin D in the blood affected the toll-like receptor (TLR) expression measured on white blood cell lymphocytes and monocytes. Specifically, they found that the TRL most affected by a vitamin D insufficiency is TLR7, which regulates the immune response against viruses. In many geographic regions, limited sun exposure during darker winter months is closely associated with vitamin D deficiency and increased risk for colds and influenza outbreaks.

Learn more: Natural News

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