Low Vitamin D increases Chances of Lung Disease
John Hopkins researchers have revealed that abnormally low blood levels of Vitamin D would increase the risk of early signs of intestinal lung disease. This research was conducted by reviewing medical information gathered on more than 6,000 adults for over a decade. The purpose of the research was to learn the new and treatable factors related to the early stages of the disease, this they hoped, would help prevent cases of the disease in future.
In the website JohnHopkinsMedicine.org, they describe interstitial lung diseaseas a rare group of diseases that scars and inflames the lungs and may gradually lead to irreversible lung damage. Cases of this, they say, are estimated at about 200,000 cases a year in the United States alone, a majority of these cases are caused by environmental toxins, or immune disorders, infections or sometimes unknown causes. The report states that people diagnosed of this ailment did not tend to live longer than 5 years
“We knew that the activated vitamin D hormone has anti-inflammatory properties and helps regulate the immune system, which goes awry in ILD,” says Erin Michos, M.D., M.H.S., associate professor of medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and associate director of preventive cardiology at the Johns Hopkins CiccaroneCenter for the Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease. “There was also evidence in the literature that vitamin D plays a role in obstructive lung diseases such as asthma and COPD, and we now found that the association exists with this scarring form of lung disease too.”
For this research, Michos and her research team used data from the Multi-Ethnic Study of recruited participants from all over the US. The average age of participants was 62, and 53 percent were women. Thirty-eight percent of participants were white, 28 percent were African-American, 22 percent were Hispanic and 12 percent were Chinese.
In the end, they revealed their findings as stated “Our study suggests that adequate levels of vitamin D may be important for lung health. We might now consider adding vitamin D deficiency to the list of factors involved in disease processes, along with the known ILD risk factors such as environmental toxins and smoking,” says Michos. “However, more research is needed to determine whether optimizing blood vitamin D levels can prevent or slow progression of this lung disease.”
Suggested ways to boost Vitamin D includes a diet of fish and fortified dairy products or spending a few minutes in the summer sun.
The results of this research even though it provides good news towards the prevention of this disease, needs to be further explored. According to Tracey Watson who writes for Natural news
“Although the researchers caution their results can’t prove a cause and effect, their data support the need for future studies to investigate whether treatment of vitamin D deficiency, such as with supplements or sunlight exposure, could potentially prevent or slow the progression of the disorder in those at risk. Currently, there is no proven treatment or cure once interstitial lung disease is established.”