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Studies suggest that high vitamin D levels may protect against COVID-19, especially for blacks-ScienceDaily




For COVID-19, having vitamin D levels above previously considered sufficient levels may reduce the risk of infection, especially for blacks, according to a new study from the University of Chicago School of Medicine.

Study published on March 19 JAMA open network, We retrospectively investigated the relationship between vitamin D levels and the likelihood of a COVID-19-positive test. Levels above 30 ng / ml are usually considered “sufficient”, but the authors found that blacks at levels 30-40 ng / ml were more COVID-19 positive than those at levels 30-40 ng / ml. We found that the risk was 2.64 times higher. 40 ng / ml or more. No statistically significant association between vitamin D levels and COVID-19 risk was found in Caucasians. The study examined data from more than 3,000 patients at the University of Chicago who were tested for vitamin D levels within 14 days prior to the COVID-19 test.

The research team is currently recruiting participants in two separate clinical trials to test the effectiveness of vitamin D supplements to prevent COVID-19.

This study is an extension of previous studies showing that vitamin D deficiency (<20 ng / ml) may increase the risk of testing for COVID-19 positivity. Current studies further support these results, showing that people with vitamin D deficiency have a 7.2% chance of being virus-positive. Another study found that more than 80% of patients recently diagnosed with COVID-19 have vitamin D deficiency.

“These new results show that having vitamin D levels above levels normally considered sufficient is associated with a reduced risk of COVID-19-positive testing, at least in black individuals. “Masu,” said David Meltzer, MD, director of hospital medicine at UChicago. Leading author of medicine and research. “This supports discussions to design clinical trials that can test whether vitamin D is a viable intervention to reduce the risk of illness, especially in people of color.”

Meltzer said that in early 2020, people with vitamin D deficiency who were randomly assigned to receive vitamin D supplementation had a much higher incidence of viral respiratory infections than those who did not. I was encouraged to investigate this topic after seeing an article that I found low in. He decided to look at the data collected at UChicago Medicine on COVID-19 to determine the possible role of vitamin D levels.

“There is a lot of literature on vitamin D, most of which focuses on bone health. Bone health is where current standards of adequate vitamin D levels come from,” Melzer explained. .. “But there is also some evidence that vitamin D may improve immune function and reduce inflammation. So far, the data are relatively inconclusive. Based on these results, previously Studies have shown that even if it is too low to be sufficient for bone health, its effects on the immune system. Different levels of vitamin D may be sufficient for different functions. “

Vitamin D can be produced by the body when taken from a diet or supplement, or when the skin is exposed to sunlight. Melzer said that most people, especially those with dark skin, have low levels of vitamin D. About half of the world’s population has levels below 30 ng / ml. “Lifeguards, surfers, the kind of people who tend to have more than enough vitamin D levels,” he said. “Most people living in Chicago in the winter will be well below that.”

Vitamin D supplements are relatively safe to take, but overdose of vitamin D supplements is associated with hypercalcemia, which causes calcium to accumulate in the bloodstream, causing nausea, vomiting, weakness, and frequent urination. If left unchecked, it can cause additional bone pain and kidney stones.

“Currently, the recommended dietary intake of vitamin D for adults is 600-800 international units (IU) per day,” Melzer said. “The National Academy of Medicine states that taking up to 4,000 IU per day is safe for the majority of people, and the risk of hypercalcemia increases at levels above 10,000 IU per day.”

One of the challenges of this study is that it is currently difficult to accurately determine how vitamin D supports immune function. “This is an observational study,” Melzer said. “We find that there is an association between vitamin D levels and the likelihood of COVID-19 diagnosis, but why, or whether these results are directly due to vitamin D, other related organisms. I don’t know exactly if it’s due to scientific factors. “

Prompted by evidence that people with vitamin D deficiency test positive for COVID-19 and are more likely to experience significant symptoms, the University of Chicago and Rush University teams take daily vitamin D supplements. We are doing two studies to see if it helps. Prevent COVID-19 or reduce the severity of its symptoms.


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