In this month’s issue of The Natural Path newsletter (20.4) we give a detailed discussion of the science of cold and flu prevention. We show the lack of research supporting the flu vaccine, and we discuss a number of natural supplements that have lots of scientific support. Well, here’s one we didn’t discuss: vitamin D. . . .

The elderly have been especially, and unjustifiably, targeted for the flu shot: even though the science doesn’t back the recommendation. A new study, however, shows that the science does back the safe, simple and inexpensive vitamin D.

The study included 107 long-term care residents who were 60 or older. They were given either a monthly supplement of 100,000 IU of vitamin D, a monthly supplement of 12,000 IU vitamin D or a placebo.

The seniors who were given the high dose vitamin D had 40% fewer acute respiratory infections than the low dose group. The high dose group had 0.67 acute respiratory infections per person per year compared to 1.11 in the low dose group: a significant difference.

The high dose group did suffer more falls. However, a number of studies have shown that smaller doses of vitamin D—around 800 IU a day—actually prevent falls in the elderly. So, it is possible that it would make more sense to break the vitamin D down into daily doses instead of taking the monthly dose all at once.

Journal of the American Geriatrics Society 2016;doi:10.1111/jgs.14679

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