Photographed by Janelle Jones.
This time of year, you’d be hard-pressed to hop on a train or bus and not spy a handful of sniffly folks. Seriously, unless you’ve got an immune system made of steel, chances are you're getting sick at least once this season. And, though we’ve been told to fill our bellies full of orange juice to help fight off pesky bugs, we might have to rethink doctor’s orders. A recent study concluded that vitamin D has little to no impact on respiratory infections.
According to the New York Times, the Clinical Infectious Disease journal published the findings, which surveyed 759 healthy people (ages 45 to 75) in four groups over four years and gave each group vitamin D, calcium, or a placebo. The findings? The folks taking the vitamin D actually had more sick days (1.8 days over a four-year span) than the placebo-taking group (which had 1.6 days ). Wowza! Calcium also proved to have little to no influence either. Okay, our minds are officially blown. But, that doesn’t mean you should pump the brakes on your vitamin D intake, necessarily. Other studies (like this one right here) indicate that vitamin D could be associated with more than just your immune system. For instance, while there is a need for more controlled and randomized trials, there's some evidence that low vitamin D levels are associated with depression. Though more research is needed, it's certainly possible that supplementation could help here. So, don't give up on vitamin D, yet! (But, it's probably not going to cure those sniffles.) (New York Times)