Vitamin D3 supplements (cholecalciferol). (Getty Images)
Vitamin D3 supplements (cholecalciferol). (Getty Images)

Dozens of recent studies have shown taking Vitamin D is an easy way to fight COVID-19 and your doctor can request a blood test to check your overall vitamin levels, Dr. Peter Osborne with Origins Nutrition Center in Sugar Land, Texas, told FOX 26 of Houston.

"I think that's probably one of the smartest things that a person could do right now, with an unpredictable role of a relatively unknown illness," Osborne told the TV station. "What we do know at this point about vitamin therapy, particularly about vitamin D, a new study has come out and a new analysis has come out on what we know about vitamin D and COVID."

So far, here's what medical experts say: People with low vitamin D who get COVID have a greater tendency toward dying, have a greater tendency toward hyper-inflammation in the cytokine storm that comes with COVID, and have a greater tendency toward getting on ventilators, which is very bad because ventilators don't work very well for COVID, Osborne said.

"When a person's on a ventilator with COVID it's not a good thing. So, the outcomes aren't great, so if we can keep people off of ventilators and we can keep their immune system supported really well with nutrition, that ideally that makes the most sense," he explained.

Additional studies also revealed nine out of 10 COVID-19 deaths could have been prevented if people had adequate Vitamin D levels, the FOX 26 report said.

In the winter, Vitamin D levels are reduced because fewer people are outside and not soaking it up from the sun, the report noted. People need at least 20 minutes of sunlight every day to get an adequate amount, which is why a supplement is often needed to get to a healthy level.

In fact, some hospitals nationwide are even using vitamins as a treatment for COVID-19, not just prevention.

"A lot of doctors are now learning this and suggesting this as a form of treatment. At the East Virginia School of Medicine there’s a COVID protocol that includes Vitamin D, Osborne said.

So if you're hospitalized for COVID, they're automatically putting you on between 20,000 and 60,000 units of Vitamin D. This is part of their standard of care protocol in that hospital system, he said.

Vitamin D is one of the most simple and affordable ways to help you stay healthy, Osborne told FOX 26.

"Vitamin D is very inexpensive. You can buy it at the local nutrition store, and it might just save your life, should you get sick.

Dr. Peter Osborne, Origins Nutrition Center

"With vitamin D, there's a therapy that can be done that I recommend, and it's 1,000 international units (IU) of vitamin D per pound. So if you're 100 pounds, you would take 100,000 international units of vitamin D for three days. After that, you don't have to keep taking those higher doses, but three days of high dose vitamin D will elevate your serum vitamin D levels to adequate levels," Osborne explained."Vitamin D is very inexpensive," he said. "You can buy it at the local nutrition store, and it might just save your life, should you get sick.

He stressed everyone should think of boosting their immune systems using four different supplements – Vitamin D, Vitamin C, Zinc and Quercetin, a natural bioflavonoid that opens up the cells in your body so zinc can get inside, the FOX 26 report said.

While some hospitals are already treating COVID patients with all four of the supplements, Osborne suggested a few dietary sources of vitamin D like cod liver oil, fatty fish and mushrooms could assist people in their goal to reach the recommended daily allowance but warned you would have to eat a lot of it.

Joint letter to prove vitamin D reduces Covid-19 infections

In an open letter being sent to world governments earlier this week, 20 health, science, and medical experts from the UK, US, and Europe say there is clear scientific evidence that vitamin D reduces Covid-19 infections, hospitalizations, and deaths, according to Nutraingredients. They are calling for immediate, widespread, and increased vitamin D intake between at least 2,000 and 4,000 IU per day for healthy adults.

Study: Proper Vitamin D level could prevent Covid-19 death

In separated scientific reports, other authors explained to Nature that COVID-19 is characterized by marked variability in clinical severity. Vitamin D had recently been reviewed as one of the factors that may affect the severity of COVID-19. The objective of the current study is to analyze the vitamin D level in COVID-19 patients and its impact on the disease severity. After approval from the Ethics Committee, M.L.B Medical College the current study was undertaken as a continuous prospective observational study of 6 weeks.

Participants were COVID-19 patients of age group 30–60 years admitted during the study period of 6 weeks. The study included either asymptomatic COVID-19 patients (Group A) or severely ill patients requiring ICU admission (Group B). The serum concentration of 25 (OH)D, were measured along with serum IL-6; TNFα, and serum ferritin. Standard statistical analysis was performed to analyze the differences. The current study enrolled 154 patients, 91 in Group A, and 63 patients in Group B.

The mean level of vitamin D (in ng/mL) was 27.89 ± 6.21 in Group A and 14.35 ± 5.79 in Group B, the difference was highly significant. The prevalence of vitamin D deficiency was 32.96% and 96.82% respectively in Group A and Group B. Out of a total of 154 patients, 90 patients were found to be deficient in vitamin D (Group A: 29; Group B: 61). Serum level of inflammatory markers was found to be higher in vitamin D deficient COVID-19 patients viz. IL-6 level (in pg/mL) 19.34 ± 6.17 vs 12.18 ± 4.29; Serum ferritin 319.17 ± 38.21 ng/mL vs 186.83 ± 20.18 ng/mL; TNFα level (in pg/mL) 13.26 ± 5.64 vs 11.87 ± 3.15. The fatality rate was high in vitamin D deficient (21% vs 3.1%).

Vitamin D level is markedly low in severe COVID-19 patients. The inflammatory response is high in vitamin D deficient COVID-19 patients. This all translates into increased mortality in vitamin D deficient COVID-19 patients. As per the flexible approach in the current COVID-19 pandemic, authors recommend mass administration of vitamin D supplements to populations at risk for COVID-19.

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