Vitamin D3 supplementation falls short in preventing upper respiratory tract infections

Vitamin D plays an important role in immune response, and it has been documented that vitamin D deficiency is common in the Indian population. However, a recent randomized, controlled study does not support vitamin D3 supplementation to prevent upper respiratory tract infections (URTIs) in healthy adults who have normal or near-normal vitamin D levels.

"In India, there is a definite need to estimate or determine baseline Vitamin D3 levels in the healthy population and conduct carefully designed trials related to supplementation, without being complacent about the rich sunlight available here."
-R.D. Kulkarni, MD, professor and head, Department of Microbiology, SDM College of Medical Sciences Hospital, Dharwad, Karnataka

Vitamin D deficiency may affect up to 50% to 90% of the population in India, studies have found. Although India receives plenty of sunshine, which is associated with certain types of vitamin D absorption, many Indian diets are low in dietary calcium, and there is a clearly defined metabolic relationship between calcium and vitamin D. In addition, some people in India may avoid...

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