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Do Vitamin D Supplements Reduce Covid-19 Severity?

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Vitamin D has been shown to improve the outcome of many inflammatory and infectious conditions, including chronic and acute respiratory infections. Its immunomodulatory as well as anti-inflammatory properties are also being studied. A recent meta-analysis has shown that vitamin D treatment can reduce viral respiratory tract infections by 70% in people with vitamin D deficiency.

It is clear that vitamin D may play a significant role in spreading COVID-19 in the U.S.

What’s The Connection Between Vitamin D Deficiency And

Covid-19 Infections?

Vitamin D is important for the immune system. It has been shown to improve the function of immune cells. Vitamin D can reduce inflammation, which can make COVID-19 worse.

How Common Is Vitamin D Deficiency?

This question can be analyzed by looking at the combination of vitamin D insufficiency and deficiency. It is approximately 25% of the U.S. population.

Why Is Vitamin D Important?

Vitamin D is essential for bone health, a healthy heart, and proper immune system function. Vitamin D is important for proper muscle function.

Vitamin D Intervention Studies

As observational studies can not always show causal relationships, Dr. David Meltzer, CHeSS, Section Hospital Medicine and Urban Health Lab at the University of Chicago are conducting clinical intervention studies to determine if vitamin D treatment can help in the prevention of COVID-19 infections or reduce the severity of the infection in different populations. These ongoing studies are described below.

Moderate Or High-Dose Vitamin D Supplementation

The National Institute of Health’s National Center for Advancing Translational Science funded this one-year study. Participants choose a maximum vitamin-D dose that they would like to be randomized. They then alternate between the preferred high or moderate dose. We originally planned to recruit 2000 health care workers. However, the study has been expanded to include non-healthcare workers. Many health care workers have early access to vaccinations, which will reduce their chances of contracting the infection. All subjects are asked about their health and behavior quarterly. They also visit the laboratory at Rush University Medical Center or Ingalls hospital for blood tests to check their levels of calcium, vitamin D, and COVID-19 antibodies. If necessary, subjects receive COVID-19 testing through their usual care. For more information about this study, please click.

Vitamin Supplementation In United States Communities

This controlled, randomized trial aims to determine if vitamin D supplementation (4,000IU or 400IU) can decrease the incidence of COVID-19 infection in diverse communities across the United States, including Black and Hispanic/Latinx people and those most affected by negative outcomes. It is expected that approximately 2,000 people will be recruited to participate in the 12-month-long study. The subjects will be provided with vitamin D and asked to fill out quarterly web surveys about their health and behaviors. They can also opt in to receive antibody testing at the end of the study. Click to learn more about the study.

Vitamin D Treatments In The Comprehensive Care Program Studies

The one-year observational study is part of ongoing randomized trials evaluating the Comprehensive Care Physician (CCP), Comprehensive Care, Community & Culture Programs (C4P). It tests whether vitamin D levels or supplementation based upon COVID-19 incidence and outcomes affect vitamin D levels. Study participants include adults with complex medical or social needs who are at higher risk of being hospitalized. The Comprehensive Care Physician will conduct quarterly vitamin D testing and make recommendations to the participants about vitamin D dosage based on their targets and measured levels. Quarterly surveys will be taken to evaluate COVID-19 exposure and sun exposure, as well as diet. Click here to learn more about the study.

Which Are The Most Potent Sources Of Vitamin D?

Vitamin D is mainly obtained from sunlight. Vitamin D can also be found in foods like fatty fish, egg yolks, and fortified milk products. One of the few sources of vitamin D that is not animal-based is mushrooms.

How Much Vitamin D Do You Need Each Day?

Vitamin D is produced in the skin when you are exposed to the sun. Adults who don’t have consistent, effective sunlight exposure should consume 600-800 international units per year. Low vitamin D levels are more likely to affect people with darker skin.

 

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