New research out of the University of Chicago Medicine is shining light on a powerful tool against contracting the COVID-19 virus.
According to research cited by US NEWS, individuals with higher-than-normal levels of vitamin D appear to be at much lower risk of contracting the virus, especially for black individuals. Lead author of the research, Dr. David Meltzer, had this to say about his teams findings:
“These new results tell us that having vitamin D levels above those normally considered sufficient is associated with decreased risk of testing positive for COVID-19, at least in Black individuals.”
Dr. Metzler, who is also chief of medicine for the university hospital, said his research showed that while normal levels of vitamin D tend to be around 30 nanograms per milliliter (ng/ml) of blood, black patients whose levels were between 30 and 40 ng/ml we’re almost three times more likely to contract the virus.
But simply increasing those numbers to be over 40 ng/ml reduced the likelihood of getting the virus back to a normal statistical chance. What is even more interesting is there seemed to be no link between increased vitamin D levels and COVID immunity for the white population.
The researches drew their data from a large sample size of 4,314 participants who had their vitamin D levels tested two weeks before receiving a COVID test, according to INSIDER. The results indicated a very statistical significance between higher vitamin D levels and a lower risk of contracting COVID for the black population. According to COVID data, 80% of COVID patients were deficient in vitamin D.
This knew research will undoubtedly change the common perception of vitamin D’s role in the body, as it’s largely been attributed to bone health. But now it appears that it’s benefits reach to the immunity-boosting level.
“This supports arguments for designing clinical trials that can test whether or not vitamin D may be a viable intervention to lower the risk of the disease, especially in persons of color,” Meltzer said in a university news release.
Sunce our bodies produce Vitamin D in response to sun exposure, people who spend a lot of time outdoors and in the sun have significantly higher levels of the vitamin their bodies.
Next to the sun, supplements and consumption of oily fish and red meat account for most people’s accumulation of vitamin D in the body.
While the recommended daily dose of vitamin D in adults is between 400-800 international units (IUs), the National Academy of Medicine has said it’s safe to take up to 4,000 IUs a day.
People of color as well as vulnerable populations such as the elderly and those with pre-existing conditions are being encouraged to increase their daily vitamin D intake to 4,000 IUs to help guard against infection by the COVID-19 virus.