Vitamin D and seasonal allergies


Here’s well-timed news for people suffering from seasonal allergies: A new study, small but well designed, shows improvement with supplementation of vitamin D.

The participants (35 people with seasonal allergic rhinitis) received either vitamin D (4000 IU daily) or placebo for two weeks. Beyond this both groups received the same treatment. The group getting vitamin D experienced less daytime problems with sneezing, nasal congestion and runny noses:

Medscape: Oral Vitamin D Boost Intranasal Steroid Effect in Rhinitis

Observe that the study has only been presented at a scientific conference – meaning it’s not published yet. The result thus has to be taken with an extra pinch of salt. And we need another, larger study for proof. But it still sounds promising.

More on vitamin D


  1. In fact they used vitamin D 4000 IU/day for 2 weeks (Typo in article above).
    Bear in mind the study comes from University of Chicago, Illinois.
    If you have less sun/uvb than Chicago your base vitamin d, 25(OH)D, starting point may be lower.

    I used to get dreadful hay fever in the spring when the yellow Rapeseed was flowering but since I raised my daily intake to 5000iu/daily throughout the year and keep my 25(OH)D around 50~60ng/ml 125~150nmol/l I am no longer troubled.

    UK Postal £25 Blood spot Testing Service for 25-hydroxy Vitamin D

  2. Jenn (NZ)
    That's really interesting. I take 4000 IU/day and I haven't had much problems with hayfever, though I've never really been a sufferer - it's always more of mild irritant for me. However my partner has nearly permanent hayfever all year round, in varying degrees. He's just started taking 1000 IU/day in the last few days, but after seeing this blog entry he's going to try a slightly higher dose. We both work in offices all day and don't get out to see the sun much, so we need our bottled sunshine to make up the difference. I'll post again in a couple of weeks and let you know if it's made any difference for him.
    Reply: #10
  3. BA
    In Good Calories, Bad Calories, there is a paragraph or two where Taubes presents evidence for seasonally-increased insulin resistance in the fall and winter months. Is it possible that reduced vitamin D levels participate in this effect? It certainly stands to reason that a greater propensity to fatten in time for winter would have great survival benefit.
  4. Jane
    Eating raw egg yolks is sufficient and better.
  5. Nutritional data lists I large egg yolk as containing Vitamin D 18.2 IU

    Dr Cannell's blog Comparing 2,000 IU/day vs. 5,000 IU/day vitamin D supplementation

    Bear in mind the study he is discussing comes from latitude 32 S (Australia) and most readers here live a lot further from the equator where sunlight is not as strong or as frequent.

    To benefit from the ANTIINFLAMMATORY action of vitamin d we have to understand The highest levels of inflammatory inhibition occur at 50 ng/ml.125nmol/l

    No one now can consume sufficient vitamin d from egg yolks or any other foods to obtain more than 10% of their daily needs, yes I know the Inuit traditional diet managed 5000iu/daily but fish/game/seal/whale fermented in seal oil is not in any supermarket.

  6. Donna
    This year I started taking supplements for Vitamin D because a blood test that I had to see if I was low showed I was and I have been taking 2000 IU's a day and my allergies, which are extreme to Elm and Juniper have been a lot better this year so I googled this and I found this site. Next year I will take more when they start up and continue my 2000 IU's a day. Thank God for some relief and I have it.
  7. graham/juicy
    Very interesting article.
    My hay fever significantly reduced and as good as vanished on vit d/k2. Here is what I did this year that helped:
    1. Started vitd / k2 supplements as well as as much sun as Ireland offers!!
    2. Take at least one natural veg juice freshly made daily so plenty vit c etc.
    3. Irregularly took some bee propolis (liquid form). Kept forgetting.
    This has been so effective that I am astounded. I noticed a fellow sufferer the other day and remembered how bad it can be.
  8. Lawrence Kang/ Australia
    I work in a fully air conditioning environment, and suffer running nose, sneezing and irritating cough for years and use cough mixture / off the shelf antihistamine tablet to control the situation.

    My annual blood test did not include Vitamin D test until one fine day my GP decided to give a test. It was found extremely low 25nmol/L. I resisted to take Vitamin D supplement initially as I am the one who believes in taking vitamins from natural source, sunbathing, milk etc. However, very little improvement was seen and finally I decided to take Vitamin D, 1000IU daily and blood test result improved reaching 58nmol/L, noticing also there is improvement in my years long sneezing and running nose, I increase to 2000iu daily intake on my GP's approval and amazingly and happily the irritating symptom seems to go away. It is Summer now and I wish it will be alright in the Winter.

  9. Mike
    I've been taking daily vitamin D supplements this year, for the first time ever, as fortification against Covid-19. I've been very pleasantly surprised to find that a side effect of taking the vitamin D is that my hay fever is greatly improved this year. Better than it has been more than a decade.
  10. Donald Gleason
    hi Jenn,
    Read Jeff Bowles books on D3 and you and your partner may up your daily D3 intake to 10,000 or 20,000 iu.
  11. D
    I have had allergic rhinitis since Oct 2019, after I used laxatives for months. I took a blood test on 4 Jun 2021 and was found to have low Vitamin D levels. So my doctor recommended a supplement of 25,000 IU to take 2 times/week for 8 weeks. I started taking the supplement this week and I will wait and see how my health gets better. I don't know if I can stop the intranasal steroids I had been using daily.

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