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Vitamin D May Protect Asthmatics from Certain Allergens

Allergies, particularly those from mold, can create serious complications for people suffering from asthma. A new study has found that vitamin D supplements may help protect asthmatics from this allergic response.

The study was published in the August 2010 issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation.

For the study, researchers from the Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center used cells from asthmatics that suffer from severe allergic reactions to mold.

When the researchers increased vitamin D levels, not only did they find a decrease in certain proteins that are responsible for the allergy, they also found increases in proteins that promote tolerance.

According to the researchers, these findings show that vitamin D deficiency may be a large risk factor for mold allergies among asthmatics. The researchers also claim that these initial findings show that supplementation may even be effective for preventing and treating other allergies. They add that further studies are necessary in order to replicate their results in human trials.

Vitamin D has been shown to improve immune system function in previous studies so the association with allergies is a logical progression.

Previous studies have also shown a number of other benefits associated with vitamin D and numerous health implications associated with vitamin D deficiency. In fact, being deficient in vitamin D can possibly can possibly result in an increased risk of depression, heart disease and the common cold.

Considering the fact that over 90% of mature adults are currently deficient in this vitamin, taking a supplement or incorporating more vitamin D fortified foods into the diet is probably a good idea. Some foods that are often fortified with vitamin D are yogurt, milk, orange juice, cereals and margarine.

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