Vitamin D stops severe asthma?

Study claims supplements protect against severe asthma attacks

NHS

Vitamin D supplements may prevent asthma worsening for some

"Vitamin D supplements protect against severe asthma attacks," The Daily Telegraph reports.

The headline was prompted by a review that pooled data from seven trials comparing taking vitamin D supplements with a placebo in people with asthma.

The researchers wanted to see whether vitamin D reduced the risk of severe asthma episodes that needed hospitalisation or treatment with oral steroids, referred to as "asthma exacerbations".

Overall, the researchers found vitamin D supplements reduced the risk of asthma exacerbations by 26%. Further analysis found the protective effect was only seen in people who were vitamin D deficient to start with.

But the main limitation of this evidence is the small number of exacerbations that occurred. For example, in two trials there were no asthma exacerbations, in another only a single event.

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NHS

Asthma

Asthma is a common lung condition that causes occasional breathing difficulties.

It affects people of all ages and often starts in childhood, although it can also appear for the first time in adults.

There's currently no cure for asthma, but there are simple treatments that can help keep the symptoms under control so it doesn't have a significant impact on your life.

Some people, particularly children, may eventually grow out of asthma. But for others it's a lifelong condition.

Symptoms of asthma

The main symptoms of asthma are:

  • wheezing (a whistling sound when breathing)

  • breathlessness

  • a tight chest - which may feel like a band is tightening around it

The severity of the symptoms varies from person to person.

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Daily Telegraph

Vitamin D supplements protect against severe asthma attacks, study shows

Asthma sufferers could halve their risk of suffering a severe attack which requires hospital simply by taking a vitamin D supplement, a new study suggests.

Researchers at Queen Mary University of London found that the number of people visiting A&E because of an attack dropped from six per cent to three per cent in people taking vitamin pills.

There was also a 30 per cent reduction in the number of asthma sufferers requiring treatment or steroids for attacks.

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