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Vitamin C Beneficial For Asthmatic Children: New Study

Ambersweet oranges, a new cold-resistant orang...

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Vitamin C has a beneficial effect against asthma, according to a study published in the journal “Clinical and Translational Allergy” The benefits depend on the age of asthmatic children, on their exposure to molds or dampness, and on the severity of their asthma.

Research scientists from the University of Helsinki in Finland analyzed the effect of 0.2 grams (200 mg) per day of vitamin C on 60 asthmatic children (aged 7 to 10 years.) The effect of vitamin C on the forced expiratory volume per one second (FEV1) was modified by age and exposure to molds or dampness. In the younger children aged 7.0 to 8.2 years with no exposure to molds or dampness, vitamin C administration increased the FEV1 level by 37%.

In the older children aged 8.3 to 10 years with exposure to molds or dampness in their bedroom more than one year before the study, vitamin C increased the FEV1 level by only 21%.

The effect of vitamin C on the asthma symptoms was modified by age and the severity of asthma symptoms. In the younger children aged 7.0 to 8.2 years with mild asthma symptoms, the benefit of vitamin C was greatest. In the older children aged 8.3 to 10 years who had severe asthma symptoms, the benefit of vitamin C was smallest.

The researchers conclude that there is strong evidence that the effect of vitamin C on asthmatic children is heterogeneous. They consider that it is important to carry out further research to confirm their findings and to more accurately identify the groups of children who would receive the greatest benefit from vitamin C supplementation.

Story Source:
University of Helsinki

Journal Reference:
Vitamin C and asthma in children: modification of the effect
by age, exposure to dampness and the severity of asthma” Clinical and Translational Allergy, 2011;

This article is for informational and  educational purposes only, and is not intended to provide medical  advice, diagnosis or treatment. Consult with your doctor or healthcare  professional for medical and nutrition advice.

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Beating Winter Colds

Sooner or later Most of us succumb each winter to a cold or two. You know the signs – your head feels foggy, concentration wanes and then comes the coughing, sneezing, sore throats and ever running nose.

By Amanda Ursell

A sure-fire prevention for the common cold has eluded the multi-national drug companies desperate to hit the jackpot with a way of zapping cold viruses in their tracks.

However all is not lost. Maybe we cannot completely stop ourselves from picking up the occasional cold, but good nutrition and extra boosts with certain vitamins, minerals and herbal products have shown themselves to be a potentially effective and natural way of boosting our immunity against attacks and combating the severity of symptoms and the number of days they hang around.

The Importance of Fruits and Vegetables

When it comes to good nutrition, following the government’s recommendation to eat nine servings of fruit and vegetables a day is one of the best strategies to outwit the 200 odd viruses that can trigger a cold  infection.

Dark green vegetables like spinach, sweet potatoes, carrots, and mangoes are packed with a wide range of antioxidants. Apricots and pumpkins are especially helpful, main lining our bodies with the orange super nutrient beta carotene.

Beta carotene is important because we convert this antioxidant into Vitamin A, a nutrient that is crucial for keeping the linings of our noses and throats in good condition, helping them to physically block the entry of viral cold invaders we breathe in from other people.

Others fruits and vegetables like oranges, grapefruit, berries, kiwi and peppers are great for Vitamin C. This powerful nutrient has been shown to mobilize macrophages, white blood cells in our blood that literally engulf and disarm enemy viruses, including those that cause colds. Not only this, but Vitamin C has its own specific anti-viral properties.

In fact, evidence of Vitamin C‘s cold-fighting abilities was proven way back in the 1980s. Scientists at the University of Wisconsin at Madison revealed symptoms to be significantly milder in people taking 500 milligrams of Vitamin C supplements four times a day than those not supplementing; while other scientists showed doses of 1 to 2 grams a day helping to both reduce susceptibility to common colds and lessen severity and duration of symptoms.

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