Interesting! Very, very interesting!


For years now I’ve heard DS’ers remark to me: “It’s so strange – I just haven’t gotten sick since my DS! For like years now! I can’t figure out why!”

Maybe we know why now:

Low Vitamin D Levels Linked to Colds
Study Shows Vitamin D May Have a Role to Play in Preventing Colds and Flu

Also in my inbox today, from the Vitamin D Council:

The Vitamin D Newsletter
February 24, 2009

As readers from 3 years ago remember, this newsletter first published
evidence vitamin D would prevent influenza and many varieties of the
common cold in 2005:

I then published the theory in:

Cannell JJ, et al. Epidemic influenza and vitamin D. Epidemiology and Infection. 2006 Dec;134(6):1129-40.

As Science News reported, I realized this after observing an influenza epidemic at Atascadero State Hospital.

The antibiotic vitamin: deficiency in vitamin D may predispose people to infection. Science News, November 11, 2006

Last year, we used vitamin D to explain virtually all of the many unsolved mysteries of influenza.

Cannell JJ, et al. On the epidemiology of influenza. Virology Journal. 2008 Feb 25;5:29.

Our second influenza paper is by far the most accessed paper in the journal this year.

Top 20 most accessed articles for last year in Virology Journal

Today, researchers from Harvard and the University of Colorado, writing in the Archives of Internal Medicine, published convincing evidence my observations at Atascadero State Hospital were correct.

Vitamin D deficiency linked to more colds and flu. Scientific American, Feb 23, 2009

Adit A, et al. Association Between Serum 25-Hydroxyvitamin D Level and Upper Respiratory Tract Infection in the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. Arch Intern Med. 2009;169(4):384-390.

Influenza kill around 35,000 Americans every year and similar viruses cause additional mortality and untold morbidity. As I have said, It appears Linus Pauling was right about everything he said about vitamin C, but he was off by one letter. The Vitamin D Council, the nearly broke non-profit educational organization, now believes most influenza deaths and many other respiratory infections, like the common cold, could be prevented if Americans, and their doctors, understood some simple facts:

  • Vitamin D is not a vitamin, but a steroid hormone precursor, which has profound effects on innate immunity.
  • The amount of vitamin D in most food and nearly all multivitamins is literally inconsequential.
  • The correct daily dose of vitamin D for adults is approximately 5,000 IU/day, not the 200-600 IU recommended by the Institute of Medicine, the National Institutes of Medicine and the FDA.
  • The only blood test to determine vitamin D adequacy is a 25-hydroxy-vitamin D, not the 1,25-di-hydroxy-vitamin D test many physicians now order.
  • Healthy vitamin D blood levels are between 50-80 ng/ml, levels obtained by fewer than 5% of Americans.
  • Medicare’s new proposed rule change, which forbids Medicare carriers for paying for virtually all vitamin D blood tests (Draft LCD for Vitamin D Assay Testing (DL29510), will kill tens of thousands of Americans yearly.
  • The mechanism of action of vitamin D in infection, dramatically increasing the body’s production of broad-spectrum natural antibiotics (anti-microbial peptides or AMP) suggests pharmaceutical doses of vitamin D (1,000 IU per pound of body weight per day for several days) will effectively treat not only influenza and the common cold, but help treat a host of other seasonal infections, including meningitis, septicemia, and pneumonia, in both children and adults.
  • In 1997, when the Food and Nutrition Board (FNB) set the current guidelines for vitamin D intake, they forgot to correct for the widespread sun avoidance that began in the late 1980’s when the AMA’s Council of Scientific Affairs warned against sun-exposure, and recommended that all Americans should make every effort to never let a photon of sunlight strike their skin. The failure of the 1997 FNB to compensate for sun-avoidance, has led to millions of deaths around the world.
  • Physicians who ignore vitamin D deficiency will eventually suffer medical-legal consequences.
  • While many think the influenza virus causes influenza, Cannell notes it was George Bernard Shaw who first understood: “The characteristic microbe of a disease might be a symptom instead of a cause.” George Bernard Shaw, (Preface on Doctors, The Doctor’s Dilemma, 1911).

If you want professional newsletter services, you will need to help find a foundation that will fund us.

John Cannell, MD
The Vitamin D Council
9100 San Gregorio Road
Atascadero, CA 93422


It’s so interesting…. my statement made at the beginning of this blog entry – I’ve made it myself. In fact, my kids have mentioned many times since my DS – “You never get sick. We get everything – but you never get a thing!” It’s been true… until this winter, shortly after my revision. At which time I went off of my Vitamin D supplements for a time while I was healing up after surgery. Then it took me a while to ease into my full vitamin regime. During that time I got sick THREE times – one stomach flu, and two killer colds. I’ve only been sick ONCE before this since July 2, 2002.

Interesting, huh?


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