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If I have asthma, does taking vitamin D supplements help reduce my risk of having an asthma attack over a placebo pill?


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MedHead Message:

Vitamin D supplementation does reduce overall asthma exacerbations and also reduce the need for steroid rescue medications. This flies in the face of recent trials suggesting no benefit. The best way to get vitamin D of course is by getting good old sun. Getting 20-30 minutes of sun is roughly equivalent to about 15-20,000IU of vitamin D. If you choose to supplement, most children would get 400-600Iu daily, while adults are in the 800-2000IU range.


1. Martineau AR, Cates CJ, Urashima M, Jensen M, Griffiths AP, Nurmatov U, Sheikh A, Griffiths CJ, Stefanidis C. Vitamin D for the management of asthma. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2016, Issue 9. Art. No.: CD011511. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD011511.pub2. 2. Jolliffe, David A, et. al. Vitamin D supplementation to prevent asthma exacerbations: a systematic review and meta-analysis of individual participant data. The Lancet Respiratory Medicine Volume 5, Issue 11, November 2017, Pages 881-890.


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