Saturday, May 14, 2011

Vitamin D, Sunlight and Pneumonia

A new analysis of vitamin D levels among winter pneumonia patients has produced some very interesting observations:

1. Those admitted to the Waikato, New Zealand hospital with severe vitamin D deficiency were more likely to die within a month compared to those who had normal or only slightly low levels.

2. The overall death rate was 29% for those with severe D deficiency, and only 4% for those with higher levels. This could indicate that vitamin D deficiency causes a 700% increase in the risk of death by pneumonia. Follow this link to read more about the research:

The authors noted that sunlight is the best source of vitamin D, and that winters in Hamilton, New Zealand area, like most temperate areas of the world, do not allow sufficient sunlight to stimulate vitamin D production. They also state that pneumonia is the single largest cause of death in children worldwide, killing about 1.6 million children under the age of five each year.

What a horror that so many countries, by means of their health departments and dermatological societies, are frightening children and their parents away from the sunlight during the seasons of the year when it is available. This ensures that vitamin D deficiency will ensue in winter. Also, at the very least, supplementation of vitamin D3 should be recommended during winter—supplementation of about 1,000 IU for every 25 pounds of bodyweight.

This is not the first time the relationship between pneumonia and sunlight has been observed. In 2003, Dr. Dowell and his colleagues showed that the disease is seasonal, with the lowest rates in summer, an increase in fall and a peak in winter.[1] This relationship exactly mimics the quantity of sunlight exposure available in different seasons. Other research has pointed out the same relationship,[2] [3]and still other studies have shown the importance of vitamin D in prevention of pneumonia and related infections to it,[4]

A popular fitness guru used to scream the slogan, “Stop the insanity!” I agree with her advice as it relates to sunlight exposure and would like to scream that it is insane for medical and governmental organizations to frighten their citizens out of the sunlight. Sunshine has become one of our most critical health needs, and those who would have us avoid it at all costs have blood on their hands.

[1] Dowell, S. et al. Seasonal patterns of invasive pneumococcal disease. Emerg Infect Dis 2003;9:573-9.

[2] Leow L, Simpson T, Cursons R, Karalus N, Hancox RJ. Vitamin D, innate immunity and outcomes in community acquired pneumonia. Respirology. 2011;16(4):611-6

[3] White AN, Ng V, Spain CV, Johnson CC, Kinlin LM, Fisman DN. Let the sun shine in: effects of ultraviolet radiation on invasive pneumococcal disease risk in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. BMC Infect Dis. 2009 Dec 4;9:196.

[4] Oduwole AO, Renner JK, Disu E, Ibitoye E, Emokpae E. Relationship between Vitamin D Levels and Outcome of Pneumonia in Children. West Afr J Med 2010;29(6):373-8.


rawdysearch said...

Keep blogging and thanks for this idea i have many ideas to share regarding source of vitamin D .

malik aayan said...

Hi! nice post. Well what can I say is that these is an interesting and very informative topic. Thanks for power