What is Vitamin D?
Vitamin D is called the “sunny vitamin”. Indeed, this vitamin is produced in our body by exposure to sunlight. In addition, we can get it from food or nutritional supplements.
The most important function is the formation and renewal of bone tissue. Without it neither calcium nor phosphorus is absorbed in the body. But it has many other benefits, for example:
- prevents the development of rickets and osteoporosis
- promotes muscle tone
- enhances immunity
- functioning of the thyroid gland and normal blood clotting
- helps the body to restore the protective sheaths surrounding the nerves
Thousands of studies show that deficiency can increase the risk of heart disease, multiple sclerosis, certain cancers, and even psoriasis.
The role of Vitamin D against Covid-19?
During the pandemic, we were limited in from going outside and getting enough sun was definitley lacking.
In England, due to the coronavirus epidemic, the government gave away a supply of vitamin D free of charge to more than 2.5 million people who are potentially deficient.
“Vitamin D is important for our bone and muscle health,” says Dr Alison Tedstone, chief nutritionist at Public Health England.
“We advise that everyone, particularly the elderly, those who don’t get outside and those with dark skin, take a Vitamin D supplement containing 10 micrograms (400IU) every day.
“This year, the advice is more important than ever with more people spending more time inside, which is why the government will be helping the clinically extremely vulnerable to get Vitamin D.” according to the BBC.
Research on the connection between vitamin D and the protective function of the body against Covid-19 is still actively ongoing. A group of scientists from the Queen Mary University of London is doing a research study on correcting the deficiency in winter and reducing the risk and/or severity of Covid-19 and other acute respiratory infections.
There are studies in which researchers looked at the link between an increased risk of Covid disease and vitamin D deficiency.
There have also been studies that examined how severe people with and without vitamin D deficiency get sick. The results were ambiguous: according to some data, deficiency associates with the incidence of COVID and a poor prognosis, while others did not.
Earlier this year, an analysis study released stated the risk of dying from complications of COVID-19 is higher in people with deficiency.
There are also theoretical grounds for pinning some hopes on this vitamin, since it participates in the functioning of the immune system and helps it to better manage viral infections.
How to get vitamin D?
There are two ways, by being in the sun or using it either with food or as a supplement.
If you live in an area where there are not enough sunny days, then you may be deficient.
Getting enough vitamin D from food is also not easy. It is difficult to make a diet from foods that contain it in large quantities because it is mainly fatty fish (salmon, tuna, mackerel, herring, sardines). You can also find it in beef liver, mushrooms, cheese, and egg yolks.
In addition, you can get vitamin D by taking supplements.
In some regions, where there is also a lack of sun, doctors recommend taking supplements from October to March.
In conclusion, it is definitely not necessary to abuse the intake of these supplements! Large doses can be dangerous – for example, lead to acute poisoning and chronic conditions. It is important to always follow the advice of your health professionals!
Photo by Aman Abdulalim