LABAs, such as salmeterol and formoterol, can reduce the symptoms of asthma for periods of up to 12 hours. They are commonly given to relax the airways overnight or after exercise, and are recommended as add-on therapies to inhaled corticosteroids. But since LABAs have previously been shown to increase the risk of life-threatening adverse effects in adults when used as the only drug, they are not recommended as the main treatment agent in asthma in any age groups.
Now researchers say that their use does not generally provide any further benefit over regular ICS therapy for children. The overview included four previous reviews of trials in children above the age of four. They showed that LABAs did not reduce severity of asthma symptoms as measured by hospital admissions, or the need for steroid medication.
If you want something that really works for asthma, you might want to look into vitamin D. One study has shown that poor diets and the lack of vitamin D among mothers were the two strongest determining factors in whether their children suffered from asthma -- more so even than whether or not the mothers smoked.
|Vitamin D Dose Recommendations|
|Below 5||35 units per pound per day|
|Age 5 - 10||2500 units|
|Age 18 - 30||5000 units|
|Pregnant Women||5000 units|
There is no way to know if the above recommendations are correct. The ONLY way to know is to test your blood. You might need 4-5 times the amount recommended above. Ideally your blood level of 25 OH D should be 60ng/ml.
Vitamin D continues to emerge as a critical factor in disease prevention and good health. This article surfaces another argument for the importance of diet and adequate vitamin D levels – the escalating problem of childhood asthma.
Asthma is a debilitating illness which can have a devastating effect on your child’s life. Asthma attacks are frightening and can be very costly if a visit to the emergency room is necessary.
Using prescription medications to help prevent attacks and relieve symptoms are expensive and carry serious risks of their own.
If you have a child with asthma or you’re pregnant or planning a family and hope to prevent the condition in your children, two of the most important things to focus on are eating right for your nutritional type and getting ample healthy doses of vitamin D.Natural Sunshine – Your Best Source of Vitamin D
Getting vitamin D directly from the sun is the best option for almost everyone. Sunlight actually destroys excess vitamin D, so it’s impossible to overdose, and you don’t have to worry about measuring your vitamin D blood levels if you get it naturally, from the sun.
Here’s how to do it safely:
- Begin cautiously, with as little as 10 minutes a day in the sun, depending on your skin type. You will know you have had enough sun exposure once your skin is the lightest color pink possible. Exposure after this point does not increase vitamin D and will increase your risk of skin cancer and premature skin aging.
- Be sure to get outside as often as you can – regularity is very important.
- Remember never, never overdo and get burned – that is key.
- Do not use sunscreen – another key. Use clothing to block the sun’s rays during your build-up period.
- Stay away from commercial tanning beds, unless you can confirm they have shielded all harmful emissions.
Vitamin D Supplements
For many of us, getting our vitamin D in winter months through sun exposure simply isn’t possible At this time of year, a safe tanning bed would be the next best option. If you don’t have access to a safe tanning bed, then supplements are your only other option.
Only vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol) is appropriate for supplementation. Do not supplement with the highly inferior vitamin D2. Vitamin D3 can be found naturally in foods like eggs, organ meats, animal fat, cod liver oil and fish. It is not the vitamin D found in milk or in other ‘fortified’ foods like cereals.
If you decide to supplement with oral vitamin D3, you must carefully monitor your vitamin D blood levels to make sure your dose is adequate, and also to avoid overdosing. (This is why it is highly preferable to get your vitamin D through sun exposure since there is virtually no chance of overdosing.) Please be sure to view my video on lab tests for vitamin D, as it is possible to get the wrong test.
Is Your Child Getting Enough Vitamin D?
The healthiest way to start your child off in life is to optimize your own vitamin D levels through exposure to sunshine, a safe tanning bed or supplements, and breastfeed your baby. There is also a substantial body of evidence that suggests vitamin D deficiency during pregnancy can actually increase your child’s risk of autism.
When your child moves to solid food, a diet based on his or her individual nutritional requirements is the single most important ingredient you can provide for a long, healthy life.
Regular, safe sun exposure will optimize your child’s vitamin D levels, with zero risk of overdose.
Your goal as a parent is to prevent rather than treat illnesses in your children with dangerous drugs and other medical intervention. Good nutrition and sensible lifestyle choices are invaluable in the fight against the ravages of childhood diseases like asthma, obesity, and diabetes.
The healthier you are, especially as you plan your family and during pregnancy, the healthier your children will be.