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Vitamin D: Increasing importance amidst COVID19

on June 29, 2020

With the search for a COVID19 cure still ongoing, great emphasis has been placed on preventive measures. While safety measures such as social distancing and wearing masks have been adopted at large, the importance of Vitamin D has gone under the radar.

So, what does Vitamin D do? Besides facilitating bone growth and regulating insulin to prevent diabetes, it helps strengthen the immune system. Research has shown that people with pre- existing conditions, such as diabetes, and weak immune systems are more susceptible to COVID19.(1)



A natural form of Vitamin D intake would be from exposure to sunlightExposure to sunlight is a natural way of absorbing Vitamin D

Here are 2 ways Vitamin D may reduce the odds of COVID19:

 

1. Boosts the Innate Immunity System

The body's immune system has 2 lines of defence – the innate and adaptive immune system. The former relies on Natural Killer cells and White Blood cells (Monocytes and Macrophages) to destroy pathogens (disease producing agents).

Within hours of pathogens entering the body, the innate cells will activate certain genes, enhancing their ability to eradicate the virus and bacteria. Vitamin D binds onto these cells and aids this transformation.(2) In essence, Vitamin D helps to regulate the process, thus reducing the likelihood of infection.

 

2. Boosts the Adaptive Immunity System

If the pathogens breach the first line of defence, the adaptive immune system is activated. It calls on specialized B & T cells, which rely on experience/memory to fight advanced pathogens.

How do B & T cells function?
T cells are split into helper and killer categories. Helper T cells trigger B cells to produce antibodies needed to develop killer T cells. These killer T cells destroy infected cells, while producing cytokines that stimulate more immune cells.(3)

Vitamin D’s role?
Excessive cytokine release results in a “cytokine storm”. It’s when too many immune cells are activated, to the point they attack healthy tissue. It also results in localized inflammation of the alveoli (tiny air sacs in the lungs), which could cascade into Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS).

Vitamin D helps prevent ARDS by binding on the immune cells, regulating the right genes to turn on or off. With a healthy number of cytokines and no inflammation of the alveoli, oxygen can easily pass through the alveoli membrane, thereby preventing ARDS.(4) 

 

Relevance to COVID19?


Though direct links between Vitamin D and COVID19 have yet to be found, Vitamin D helps prevent ARDS, a common cause of death in COVID19 patients. Besides, having a stronger immune system is always desirable.

Immune+ is a natural immune boosting supplement, and contains Vitamin D, amongst other ingredients. In such perilous times, having a strong immune system is a priority.

Immune+ is due to hit the shelves soon so sign up for our blog updates to be notified when it arrives! You can do so by simply keying in your email in the column to the right side of this blog!

 Immune+: Your way to a stronger immune system

 

Disclaimer

This blog post is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. The views and nutritional advice expressed are not intended for the purpose of providing medical advice. Please always consult your health care provider if you are experiencing any medical conditions. All content on this page has been thoroughly reviewed. Nevertheless, no liability can be accepted for the completeness and accuracy of the information.

 

 

 References

1 B Dunleavy. 2020, March 13. Strengthening immune health can help protect against COVID-19. Retrieved June 23, 2020, from

https://www.upi.com/Health_News/2020/03/13/Strengthening-immune-health-can-help-protect-against-COVID- 19/1021584037837

2 Zaiets, K., Padilla, R., & Bravo, V. 2020, June 11. Can vitamin D help with symptoms of COVID-19? Possibly, it's key to helping your immune system function. Retrieved June 24, 2020, from https://www.usatoday.com/in-depth/news/2020/06/09/vitamin-d-and-covid-19-could-low-vitamin-d-levels-affect- coronavirus/5274331002 

3 CTCA. 2017, 20 May. What's the Difference between B-Cells and T-Cells? Retrieved June 24, 2020, from

https://www.cancercenter.com/community/blog/2017/05/whats-the-difference-b-cells-and-t-cells

4 Zaiets, K., Padilla, R., & Bravo, V. 2020, June 11. Can vitamin D help with symptoms of COVID-19? Possibly, it's key to helping your immune system function. Retrieved June 24, 2020, from https://www.usatoday.com/in-depth/news/2020/06/09/vitamin-d-and-covid-19-could-low-vitamin-d-levels-affect- coronavirus/5274331002/