Health and nutrition News

Low vitamin D status ‘almost certainly promotes Covid deaths’, doctors say

Over 100 doctors, researchers and healthcare workers have written an open letter to governments around the world urging them to urgently implement whole population vitamin D supplementation programmes. 

In an open letter the doctors argue that research shows low vitamin D levels “almost certainly promote COVID-19 infections, hospitalisations, and deaths”. 

They write: “Many factors are known to predispose individuals to higher risk from exposure to SARS-CoV-2, such as age, being male, comorbidities, etc., but inadequate vitamin D is by far the most easily and quickly modifiable risk factor with abundant evidence to support a large effect. Vitamin D is inexpensive and has negligible risk compared to the considerable risk of COVID-19.”

The doctors say that vitamin D modulates thousands of genes and many aspects of immune function. The say that newly published research shows that:

  • Higher vitamin D blood levels are associated with lower rates of SARS-CoV-2 infection.
  • Higher D levels are associated with lower risk of a severe case (hospitalization, ICU, or death).
  • Intervention studies (including RCTs) indicate that vitamin D can be a very effective treatment.
  • Many papers reveal several biological mechanisms by which vitamin D influences COVID-19.
  • Causal inference modelling, Hill’s criteria, the intervention studies & the biological mechanisms indicate that vitamin D’s influence on COVID-19 is very likely causal, not just correlation.

In their letter, the doctors add: “There is no case for delaying clinical trials to increase use of something so safe, especially when remedying high rates of deficiency/insufficiency should already be a priority.”

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

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