When I started writing posts about vitamin D, I thought it would be a straightforward three-part series: What does vitamin D do? What happens when you’re deficient in it? How can we prevent that from happening? The more I read on the subject, though, the more interesting things I learn—all of which underscore the need to supplement infants with vitamin D.
This latest item is from Australia—where they get plenty of sunshine—and turned up an association between vitamin D deficiency and food allergies in infants. Children in the Melbourne area with documented vitamin D deficiency were nearly four times more likely to suffer from food allergies than were those with normal vitamin D levels.
This supports the work of a number of researchers (one example here) who have found that people who live farther from the equator (and hence get less sunshine—and thus less vitamin D) are more likely to end up in an emergency room or hospital with a severe food allergy reaction than those who live in the tropics.
Sunshine and food allergies! That would have sounded like science fiction back in my 1970s med school days.
More on the relationship of vitamin D and immune system function coming up…