- Boost skin protection.
- Avoid skin infection.
- Help produce protective skin peptides.
Findings from a recent study published in the Journal of Allergy & Clinical Immunology, suggests oral supplements of vitamin D may boost production of protective compounds in the skin, and may ultimately help prevent skin infections.
The small study focused on patients with atopic dermatitis, characterised by areas of severe itching, redness and flaking skin, and found that supplements of vitamin D3 enhanced the skin’s ability to produce a peptide called cathelicidin, which protects against microbial invasion.
[pullquote_left] “This suggests that supplementation with oral Vitamin D dramatically induces cathelicidin production in AD lesional skin, and may also induce production in normal skin”
Atopic dermatitis (AD) is one of the first signs of allergy during the early days of life and is said to be due to delayed development of the immune system. According to the American Academy of Dermatologists it affects between 10 to 20 per cent of all infants, but almost half of these kids will ‘grow out’ of eczema between the ages of five and 15.
The researchers, led by Richard Gallo at the University of California commented: “The results suggest that supplementation with oral Vitamin D dramatically induces cathelicidin production in AD lesional skin, and may also induce production in normal skin,”
Gallo and his co-workers recruited 14 people with moderate to severe atopic dermatitis and 14 people with normal skin. All of the participants were given daily vitamin D3 supplements of 4000 IUs for 21 days. The researchers analysed skin lesions at the start and end of the study, and levels of cathelicidin were determined.
After supplementation, the skin of people with AD showed statistically significant increases in cathelicidin from 3.53 to 23.91 relative copy units (RCU). Moreover, normal skin showed a “modest increase”, said the researchers, from 1.0 to 1.78 RCU.
[box_info] Vitamin D3 and skin protection.