A recent study has found that the presence of Vitamin D can be linked with Coronavirus cases and the mortality rate. It has found that the low average levels of Vitamin D might be the reason why the mortality rate is so high in around 20 European countries.
Dr. Lee Smith of the Anglia Ruskin University and Mr. Petre Cristian Ilie, the lead urologist in Queen Elizabeth Hospital King’s Lynn NHS Foundation Trust, has led and published this research in Aging Clinical and Experimental Research.
Many observational studies have reported this association that low-levels of Vitamin D leads to people being more susceptible to respiratory tract infection. On the basis of 25 randomized controlled studies, it was seen that presence of this vitamin had an overall positive effect on any respiratory tract-based infection. Gruber-Bzura has reviewed literature which showed that Vitamin D can also be useful in treating influenza. On that basis, the hypothesis can be done that the presence of this vitamin can be useful to treat Covid-19 patients.
Vitamin D is an essential nutrient for our body, which regulates the white blood cell responses of our body, and helps to prevent the release of excess inflammatory cytokines. As per many researches, it has been out that coronavirus can trigger the release of proinflammatory cytokines in excess.
For the test, the focus was mostly placed on European countries and the mean levels of Vitamin D of these countries were taken into account. The analysis was conducted through the Pearson Correlation Coefficient Calculator.
The study has found out the residents from Spain and Italy suffer from low average Vitamin D levels which has resulted in the high mortality rate in these areas. The reason is that due to their skin pigmentation, the elderly members of these countries avoid the strong sun. On the other hand, their skin pigmentation takes away a lot of natural Vitamin D from their system.
Northern Europe has higher levels of Vitamin D since there is widespread consumption of Vitamin D supplements and cod liver oil. Sun is not completely avoided too. Hence, many of the Scandinavian nations have low mortality rates.
However, the study cannot be considered the final one. There are limitations based on how the testing is being done in different countries as well as the precautions they have taken to prevent the spread of the virus. However, Petre Cristian Ilie has clearly mentioned that the correlation of these events does not always result in causation.
So, it is clear that more studies need to be done to corroborate this new study.
Image Credit: somartin