Is There a Vitamin That Prevents Infection?

The answer is D, as in Vitamin D.

The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition has published a new trial showing that high doses of vitamin D3 supplements can help effectively protect against infections and reduce use of antibiotics among the elderly.

Vitamin D products, can be found in small amounts in a few foods, including fatty fish like tuna. It is also more available these days through dairy, juices and cereals.  Our parents (and commercials) always told us that milk does a body good because it helps treat weak bones, prevent osteoporosis, arthritis, and even skin conditions among other things. The vitamin is also obtained through exposure to sunlight, which is by far my favorite form. It has been known to enhance innate immunity by promoting the production of antibacterial peptides which help fight microbial and viral infection prevention.

The wonder vitamin even helps prevent the flu! The study observed that “taking vitamin D supplements can be at least as effective as the flu vaccine, which has a normally lower than 50 to 60% efficacy.” By using both the vaccine and vitamin D, to prevent the flu, odds of getting an infection can be even lower but as a person who loves sun but hates needles, this is still some good news.

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