A new study has confirmed that vitamin D plays an important role in activating your immune defenses against infectious diseases like the flu. Vitamin D helps produce antibacterial peptides that help protect against the flu. That is why in winter, when there is little sunshine, people are more prone to vitamin D deficiency and getting infected with flu viruses.
This confirmation is exciting, if for no other reason than the fact that curing vitamin D deficiency is not only inexpensive – it may in some cases cost you nothing! And, optimizing your vitamin D levels can have a remarkably positive effect on your overall health and helps protect you against a vast number of diseases that are far more serious than the flu. Vitamin D has now been shown to help prevent breast and other types of cancer, heart disease, diabetes, depression, autoimmune disease, infectious diseases, hypertension, colon cancer, and falls in the elderly, to name only a few.
Vitamin D actually works by increasing your body’s production of 2-300 different antimicrobital peptides that are actually far more effective than any synthetic antibiotic or antiviral. They do this at a fraction of the cost and at virtually no toxicity.
Recommended Daily Intake for Optimal Health
Based on the most recent research, the current recommendation is 35 IU’s of vitamin D per pound of body weight.
So for a child weighing 40 pounds, the recommended average dose would be 1,400 IU’s daily, and for a 170-pound adult, the dose would be nearly 6,000 IU’s.
However, it’s important to realize that vitamin D requirements are highly individual, as your vitamin D status is dependent on numerous factors, such as the color of your skin, your location, and how much sunshine you’re exposed to on a regular basis.
So, although these recommendations may put you closer to the ballpark of what most people likely need, it is simply impossible to make a blanket recommendation that will cover everyone’s needs.
Most babies should take a daily vitamin D supplement, a new study shows.
Only 1% to 13% of infants under 1 year now get a vitamin D supplement, available in inexpensive drops, according to a study published online today in Pediatrics.
Those drops are needed, the study says, because only 5% to 37% of American infants met the standard for vitamin D set by the American Academy of Pediatrics in 2008: 400 international units a day.
Vitamin D strengthens bone and the immune system and also appears to prevent type 1 diabetes, heart disease and cancer, the paper says.
Few breast-fed babies — 5% to 13%, depending on their age — received the recommended amount of vitamin D, researchers estimated. Although breast milk is the perfect food in every other way, it’s often low in vitamin D, says pediatrician Nicolas Stettler, a spokesman for the pediatrics academy who wasn’t involved in the study. Because humans originated in equatorial areas with year-round sunshine, babies in the distant past wouldn’t have needed to get vitamin D from breast milk, he says.
Yet many formula-fed infants don’t get enough, either. Babies need to drink about 32 ounces of fortified formula a day to get 400 international units of vitamin D, says study author Cria Perrine of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Babies younger than 6 months can rarely drink that much. A supplement can give babies all they need.
Many mothers also are vitamin D-deficient.
At our office we carry a few different Vitamin D supplements, something for everybody!