Many studies are showing that there may be a link between Vitamin D and COVID-19. Recently, the journal, Aging Clinical and Experimental Research, published a study that found an association between low levels of vitamin D and high numbers of COVID-19 cases and mortality rates across 20 European countries. The COVID-19 virus is known to cause the release of inflammatory chemicals referred to as pro-inflammatory cytokines. Vitamin D may help to prevent the release of these inflammatory chemicals.
Italy and Spain have each experienced high COVID-19 mortality rates. This study shows that both countries had lower average vitamin D levels compared to most northern European countries.
Previous observational studies have reported an association between low levels of vitamin D and susceptibility to acute respiratory tract infections. Other studies have also shown that Vitamin D may help to reduce the respiratory symptoms associated with COVID-19.
As we know, there is no evidence-based approved treatment for COVID-19. However, there are actions that we can take to help to protect ourselves. Things like maintaining healthy sleeping patterns, following a nutrient-rich, anti-inflammatory diet and participating in a regular exercise routine can be beneficial for supporting immune function. In addition, Vitamin D levels should be checked. Vitamin D is important for immune function and so many other processes in the body. I typically recommend for patients to have their 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels checked at least twice per year. This allows for appropriate, individualized dosing of Vitamin D3.