Covid-19 & Vitamin D

Most of my blogs have been more “big picture” oriented toward sustainable living, with some “to do” elements. Here’s a blog with data concerning the effect that Vitamin D may have in dealing with Covid-19. I remember seeing a recent article suggesting that the pandemic’s impact has been worse in winter because, first, there are fewer hours of sunlight in winter and, second, people spend less time outdoors in winter. Here’s a brief summary I got from Googling …

 

Nature.com

“There is some evidence to suggest that vitamin D might help protect against becoming infected with, and developing serious symptoms of, COVID-19. We know, for example, that people with low vitamin D levels may be more susceptible to upper respiratory tract infections. One meta-analysis found that people who took vitamin D supplements, particularly those who had low vitamin D levels, were less likely to develop acute respiratory tract infections than those who didn’t.

“Vitamin D may protect against COVID-19 in two ways. First, it may help boost our bodies’ natural defense against viruses and bacteria. Second, it may help prevent an exaggerated inflammatory response, which has been shown to contribute to severe illness in some people with COVID-19.”

 

I don’t know what the scientific research is that underlies Nature.com, though what they’re saying seems reasonable. In doing research, I’ve found that when I get data from three or more separate sources that essentially say the same thing, the results have been quite reliable.

 

To add a second source

NPR recently featured a Bostonian who ran a homeless shelter. He expected Covid-19 infections to be huge, inasmuch as those people don’t have the healthiest diets and lifestyle. However, while the homeless had a high rate of infection, they had no symptoms! His discovery was that because they were outside so much, they had high levels of vitamin D in their systems. He contacted colleagues across the country and learned they had the same results.

These homeless shelter managers then did research on people who had serious symptoms in hospitals; they found that those people had very low levels of vitamin D.

 

For a third source…

I asked D, the entity with whom Trina communicates, for D’s perspective on the same topic.

“Vitamin D is a building block of humans’ immune system. It is advisable for individuals to get their vitamin D levels tested by their doctor to determine if their bodies need more vitamin D to stay healthy. We do believe that keeping the immune system strong helps prevent getting Covid-19 … or, at the very least, lessening the symptoms.”

 

What I like about all this information is:

While we’re waiting for vaccinations, there are simple, painless, and inexpensive ways to stay healthy. Vitamin D pills are readily available – over-the-counter and with even less expensive generic options – at your nearby drugstore. And walks in a nearby park, especially on sunny days, cost nothing – and provide a break in monotony if you’re in a quarantine situation.

(Now I realize that when my wife tells me to “go take a hike,” I really haven’t done anything that made her angry at me; she’s really just trying to support my vitamin D levels.)

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