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Monday, April 12, 2021

Vitamin D Deficiency May Lead To COVID-19, Says Researchers

There is no scientific evidence to prove that deficiency of vitamin D leads to extreme symptoms of COVID-19, but there is a high correlation in between disease's sunshine vitamin and immune responses, researchers says.

Vitamin D deficiency may lead to COVID-19. Vitamin D is an inexpensive and has a potential risk, global researchers have asked authorities to establish it part of their strategic plan against the novel coronavirus, especially in comparison to the considerable risk of COVID-19.

Several factors, including age, gender (male) and chronic health conditions, are considered to obligate people to a higher risk of SARS-CoV-2 exposure. Deficiency of vitamin D seems to be the most readily and rapidly modifiable risk factor with ample evidence supporting a large beneficial impact, said Prof. Afrozul Haq, former dean of the School of Interdisciplinary Sciences and Technology (SIST) at Jamia Hamdard University, New Delhi.

The Letter To Government By Researchers 

He wrote an open letter about the issue in December 2020. The letter posted on the website vitamin for all calls for urgent widespread improved vitamin D intake.

The Vitamin D and COVID-19 researchers team, including myself, began the process of writing this letter to make everyone aware of the benefits of vitamin D supplementation in COVID-19 affected patients and to send this letter to all health ministries, health staff, government bodies and NGOs, Haq said.

Evidence indicates, according to the letter, which had 171 signatories by Wednesday, the likelihood that the COVID-19 pandemic is mostly sustained by contamination in those with low vitamin D and that deaths are mostly clustered in those with deficiency.

Will Vitamin D Help Fight COVID-19? 

The very probability that this is the case could force more vitamin D data to be obtained urgently.

The preponderance of evidence suggests, even without further details, that increased vitamin D would help reduce illnesses, ICU admissions, and deaths, it said.

Immunologist Vineeta Bal added a note of scepticism as to the discussion on the matter intensified, noting that most of the experts are centred in developing countries where daily supplementation of vitamin D could be possible, realistic and inexpensive. But that’s not India’s situation.

In India, vitamin D deficiency is extremely normal. Daily supplementation, not even for pregnant mothers, is not part of regular guidelines.

Bal, visiting professor at the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research in Pune.

Supplementation, as recommended in the letter, is likely to take weeks or months to reach desirable amounts of vitamin D in the serum if individuals are seriously deficient, she added.

Vitamins And Supplements

The scientist added that while the country needs personnel and infrastructure except for the vaccination programme, this should not be deemed an emergency measure.

Vitamin D supplementation can, in her opinion, be a long-term, non-emergency intervention and one that could also be beneficial in the COVID-19 situation.

Other vitamins and micronutrients along with zinc are also beneficial effects, not just Vitamin D, she explained.

As per Prof Srijit Mishra, another signatory to the letter, the suggestion is to take up to 4,000 international units (IU) or 100 microgrammes (mcg) of vitamin D every day for adults.

There is no scientific evidence to prove that deficiency of vitamin D leads to extreme symptoms of COVID-19, but there is a high correlation in between disease’s sunshine vitamin and immune responses, researchers says.
Inputs PTI

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