Vitamin D can protect lungs from effects of smoking: Study

Last Updated: Jul 20, 2012, 18:28 PM IST

Washington: Vitamin D may protect your lungs against the effects of smoking, a new research has claimed.

Researchers from Boston found that Vitamin D deficiency is associated with rapid decline in lung function over time in smokers, suggesting that vitamin D may have a protective effect against the effects of smoking on lungs.

"We examined the relationship between vitamin D deficiency, smoking, lung function, and the rate of lung function decline over a 20 year period in a cohort of 626 adult white men from the Normative Aging Study," said lead author Nancy E. Lange from the Channing Laboratory, Brigham and Women`s Hospital.

"We found that vitamin D sufficiency had a protective effect on lung function and the rate of lung function decline in smokers," she said.

The findings were published online ahead of print publication in the American Thoracic Society`s American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.

"Our results suggest that vitamin D might modify the damaging effects of smoking on lung function," Lange said.

"These effects might be due to vitamin D`s anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties," she added.

The data of the study was observational only and not a trial.

"If these results can be replicated in other studies, they could be of great public health importance," said Lange.

"Future research should also examine whether vitamin D protects against lung damage from other sources, such as air pollution," she said.