Vitamin D Deficiency Linked to Higher Risk of Severe COVID-19

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vitamin D deficiency
Image: Doug Jordan, M.A, USCDCP (CC0 license)

After seven months of research, scientists have now found several links between underlying conditions that can increase the risk of contracting the coronavirus infection. For instance, a new study has discovered that Vitamin D deficiency may have been a major contributor to coronavirus cases since the beginning of the pandemic.

Till now, researchers have established that people from certain groups usually have more chances of not only catching the virus but having more associated complications than others such as older adults.

Similarly, people with existing medical problems including diabetes, cancer, heart problems, arthritis, and others are also advised to be more cautious and take extra preventive measures as they are also more prone to catching the infection and having additional problems.

However, except for these two groups, it is generally assumed that others can easily prevent the virus as well as recover from the infection in case they do catch it, which is not true.

RELATED: Why Are Younger People are at a Higher Risk of Coronavirus Infection?

Health experts suggest people continue to follow all the suggested guidelines for protection from the coronavirus infection as the risk remains to be very high and there is a lot of room for further investigation on SARS-CoV-2 and its multiple effects on the organs and body.

For example, a recent study, which was conducted by researchers from the University of Chicago Medicine, shows that Vitamin D deficiency can increase the risk of coronavirus infection.

Prior to this research, a number of other studies had also highlighted how Vitamin D can possibly reduce the likelihood of severe complications in people with coronavirus infection.

According to the leading investigator,  Dr. David Meltzer, there should be further investigation on the potential association between Vitamin D levels in people and the risk and severity of coronavirus infection.

This is because the number of cases of coronavirus infection has only gone up in the US in the past few weeks and the conditions of the pandemic are expected to worsen instead of improving.

Coincidentally, the statistics on vitamin D intake in the US show that around forty-two percent of the population has a deficiency.

The vitamin, which has been deemed as an essential building block of the immune system, is found in multiple foods from salmon to milk. However, the body needs sunlight exposure in order to use vitamin effectively.

People who have a high intake of vitamin D, enough sun exposure, and an overall healthy diet are usually healthier, low levels of inflammation, and have a stronger immune system.

However, Dr. Meltzer says that the role of the vitamin in immune systems does not mean people prioritize it over following guidelines including wearing a mask and staying home.

Vitamin D deficiency can be easily managed with a healthy diet and a good amount of time spend in sunlight. Do not take supplements without getting an official diagnosis of a deficiency and consultation as well as a prescription from a doctor.

If a person has enough vitamin D, follow all instructions for the prevention of the coronavirus by the U.S. Centre for Disease Control and Prevention.

 

 

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