Roughly 80% of the immune system resides in the gut.
Read that again.
Everything we do and put into your bodies affects the immune system (you are what you eat, right?). Here I share with you why Vitamin D is hailed one of the most important hormones to help strengthen and build a stronger immune system.
Did you know that Vitamin D is actually a hormone rather than a vitamin? In fact, the final product of Vitamin D conversion in the body is considered a hormone. We can obtain Vitamin D from some foods such as oily fish, egg yolks, mushrooms, fortified foods and soy, however 90% of the Vitamin D we get is made by our bodies. The body makes Vitamin D from direct sunlight (particularly UVB radiation) in the skin and the synthesis process continues in the liver and kidneys, until producing the final active form of the hormone.
Several different types of cells in the body, including immune cells, contain the receptor for Vitamin D, which means they can respond to Vitamin D molecules, triggering different reactions in the body. No wonder Vitamin D can affect so many aspects of health including bone health, cardiovascular health, immunity, autoimmune disease, type I diabetes, and mental health.
But because the cold season is upon us, I am here to share with you how Vitamin D affects the immune system by helping to keep that undesired cold at bay.
Can Vitamin D Help With Colds and Flu?
Absolutely! There is tonnes of scientific research backing up that a deficiency in Vitamin D increases the chances of infection.
A study has shown that individuals with low Vitamin D levels are more likely to develop upper respiratory tract infections than those with sufficient levels. And several studies have reported an association of lower Vitamin D levels and increased rates of infection, including influenza.