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Best Life: The link between COVID-19 and vitamin D

Updated: Jan. 19, 2021 at 9:11 AM CST
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ORLANDO, Fla. (Ivanhoe Newswire) – Vitamin D is an important nutrient that helps your body absorb calcium. But studies show about 40 percent of Americans don’t get enough of the vitamin. And, new research is suggesting low vitamin D levels may affect a person’s chance of getting COVID-19 and recovering from it.

It’s known as the sunshine vitamin. Vitamin D helps keep your bones and immune system strong. Now, researchers are finding this vitamin may also be linked to COVID-19. “There appeared to be worse outcomes in COVID patients who have low vitamin D levels,” said Dr. Ivan Castro, MD, who practices Internal Medicine at Private Health MD.

In a recent study, more than 80 percent of 200 hospitalized COVID patients had a vitamin D deficiency, and prescription vitamin D helped COVID patients recover better. Of 50 patients who received it, none died and only one ended up in the ICU. In a group of 26 patients who didn’t receive vitamin D, two died and 13 were admitted to the ICU.

“Vitamin D is linked to the immune system,” said Castro, MD. You can make sure you’re getting enough of the vitamin. Food like salmon, sardines, cod liver oil, egg yolks, mushrooms, milk, and oatmeal are high in vitamin D. Though the sun may be the best source. Your body makes vitamin D when it’s exposed to direct sunlight.

The recommended daily value of vitamin D for most adults is between 600 and 800 international units, depending on your age.

Contributor(s) to this news report include: Julie Marks, Producer; Bob Walko, Videographer and Editor.

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