Drinking milk, eating cheese and yogurt, getting moderate sun exposure and taking a daily vitamin supplement are all effective ways to get your daily dose of vitamin D, and new research has shown that this nutrient may help reduce the risk of asthma among children.
A report published in the International Journal of Biometeorology found that compared to 13- to 14-year-old teens who live in relatively sunless northern climes, those who receive an extra 20 minutes of sun exposure each day are 1.1 percent less likely to have asthma.
Likewise, 6- to 7-year-old children who get 20 extra minutes of ultraviolet light every day are 0.6 percent less likely to have the respiratory condition, compared to kids who see little daily direct sunlight.
The study’s authors, all of whom hail from Spain, suggested that children who live above 40 degrees latitude be given an extra few minutes each day to go outside.
While the skin naturally synthesizes vitamin D3 after sun exposure, ultraviolet light increases the risk of melanoma in children and adults. For anyone who wants to boost their vitamin D levels without risking their skin, it may be safer to take a dietary supplement and to regularly consume dairy products.