Vitamin D and your Immune System
We all know that we need Vitamin D and that we can get it from the sun, as well as from fatty dish, fish liver oils and eggs, as well as in Vitamin D supplement form. Even so, nearly half the world’s population has low levels of vitamin D. What you might now know is why we need vitamin D. What, exactly, does vitamin D do?
Danish researchers have discovered that we need vitamin D to activate our immune system’s killer cells. These killer cells, known as T cells, become inactive if they don’t have enough vitamin D. If they are inactive, they can’t fight incoming germs and bacteria. Scientists have told us that vitamin D is important for calcium absorption. They have also made a connection between the levels of vitamin D and diseases like MS and cancer. But this is the first time a connection between vitamin D and immune function has been made.
“What we didn’t realize is how crucial vitamin D is for actually activating the immune system — which we know now,” Geisler wrote in the study in the journal, Nature Immunology. Geisler and his research team said the findings offered much needed information about the immune system and would be of particular use when developing new vaccines. “This is important not only in fighting disease but also in dealing with anti-immune reactions of the body and the rejection of transplanted organs,” they wrote. Geisler said there were no definitive studies on the optimal daily vitamin D dose but experts recommend 25 to 50 micrograms.
If you have concerns about supplementation and aren’t sure about your Vitamin D levels, our practice has a simple blood test to check for your Vitamin D levels as well as other important biomarkers. Call us and we’ll tell you about it.