Saturday October 19, 2019

Vitamin D Can Help to Control Asthma, Says Study

Importantly, the findings showed that the effects were most pronounced among obese children

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Have Asthma? Don't Shy Away From Your Doctor
Have Asthma? Don't Shy Away From Your Doctor. Pixabay

Besides making bones strong, higher levels of Vitamin D can also help children with asthma to become more resilient to harmful respiratory effects caused by indoor air pollution, say researchers including one of an Indian-origin.

“Asthma is an immune-mediated disease,” said lead author Sonali Bose, Assistant Professor at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai.

“From previous scientific studies we knew that vitamin D was a molecule that may influence asthma by impacting antioxidant or immune-related pathways,” she added.

The researchers observed that having low blood vitamin D levels was related to harmful respiratory effects of indoor air pollution from sources such as cigarette smoke, cooking, burning of candles, and incense, among children with asthma.

Conversely, in homes that had the highest indoor air pollution, higher blood vitamin D levels were associated with fewer asthma symptoms in children.

asthama-in-kids
The study provides new insight that could help us predict and manage diseases like asthma – which are a significant public health burden. IANS

Importantly, the findings showed that the effects were most pronounced among obese children, Bose said.

“This highlights a third factor at play here – the obesity epidemic – and helps bring that risk to light when considering individual susceptibility to asthma.”

For the study, published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice, the researchers tested three factors — air pollution levels in homes, blood vitamin D levels, and asthma symptoms — in 120 schoolchildren with pre-existing asthma. One-third of the children were obese.

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“One way to increase blood vitamin D levels is to increase sun exposure, but that isn’t always possible in urban environments, or in people with darker skin pigmentation,” Bose said.

“Another way is through dietary supplements or eating more foods that are high in vitamin D, such as fatty fish, mushrooms, or foods fortified with vitamin D, such as bread, orange juice, or milk.” (IANS)

Next Story

Flavoured E-Cigarettes Affect Airways, Worsen Asthma

Certain flavoured e-cigarettes, even without nicotine, may change how airways, affected by an allergic disease, function, thus worsening the severity of asthma

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e-cigarettes, flavoured, asthma, airways
A flavour multipack for the Juul vaping device. Sweet-flavored electronic cigarettes promote youth vaping. Wikimedia Commons

Certain flavoured e-cigarettes, even without nicotine, may change how airways, affected by an allergic disease, function, thus worsening the severity of diseases such as asthma, say researchers.

For the first time, a model of asthma was used to investigate the effect of a range of popular e-cigarette flavours, with and without nicotine.

“This is especially important for those with respiratory disease, whom are vulnerable to the effects of smoking,” Dr Chapman said.

“The majority of e-cigarette smokers use flavoured liquids but there is some evidence that flavour additives can be toxic when inhaled,” said Dr David Chapman from from the University of Technology Sydney (UTS).

The use of e-cigarettes has dramatically increased in the past few years, especially among younger smokers globally.

e-cigarettes, flavoured, asthma, airways
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said Friday that they were investigating 215 cases of a serious lung disease possibly related to the use of e-cigarettes. VOA

Despite the suggestion they are a healthier alternative to tobacco cigarettes, there is a lack of evidence in both animal studies and human data on the effect of e-cigarettes on lung function.

The researchers found that some flavoured e-cigarettes, even in the absence of nicotine, can worsen disease severity.

“The exact effects on features of asthma were dependent upon the specific flavour, suggesting not all flavoured e-cigarettes will have the same consequences on lung health,” Dr Chapman said in the study published in Scientific Reports.

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In this study, the flavour Black Licorice exaggerated airway inflammation whereas Cinnacide had the opposite effect, suppressing airway inflammation.

The researchers didn’t analyse the liquids directly, to confirm what they contained, however there is evidence from previous research that flavours categorised as “buttery/creamy” and “cinnamon”, which likely include “Banana Pudding” and “Cinnacide”, respectively, are toxic.

Caution should be taken in promoting the use of flavoured e-cigarettes to patients with respiratory disease such as asthma and that policy makers should consider restricting the use of flavoured e-cigarettes, the team added. (IANS)