Vitamin D supplement as additional protection against coronavirus
It sounds too good to be true: take vitamin D and you are better protected against the coronavirus? Scientists from various countries are sounding the alarm: preliminary studies show that people with a deficiency of this sunshine vitamin are much more susceptible to the virus. As a preventative measure, everyone is therefore advised to take vitamin D. The chance that you have a deficiency is very high, especially in colder areas such as the Netherlands.
At the moment, many conversations I have with people are about the coronavirus vaccine. Everyone has questions, no one clarity. 'Even' the governments seem to be constantly changing their minds and that doesn't make things any more comfortable.
Right now we live in a world, where society is being disrupted by a virus that is spreading very fast, mutating and causing overcrowded hospitals worldwide. At the same time, ordinary life is put on hold, in which it’s almost impossible to travel freely.
Safely locked away from the coronavirus?
The other day, someone told me about her mother, who became more and more isolated during this period, turning down every visit. She is 93 and afraid that she will contract the virus. That's why she stays inside and doesn't see anyone, not even her own daughter. Her little room is her safe haven, which she does not even leave to take a breath of fresh air, too afraid that she will get sick.
But is it really logical to lock yourself up completely, hoping to stay healthy that way? It has long been known that it is important for a healthy immune system, as well as a healthy mental mind, to have lots of exposure to the sun, fresh air outdoors and a natural environment. The chances of contracting an infection outside are much lower, than inside.
In fact, the chance of contracting the coronavirus outside is very small, especially if you keep two feet away from each other.
A vitamin D supplement for extra protection
Actually, vitamin D is a hormone, which is fat-soluble. It plays an important role in the body in the absorption of calcium and phosphate. Among other things, this ensures a healthy bone structure.
Vitamin D is also called the "sunshine vitamin”. Our body is able to produce it through sunlight. This is therefore the main source. Between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. you can absorb the most through sunlight. In theory, half an hour outside is enough to absorb the recommended daily intake. However, it is questionable whether your body can absorb enough through UV radiation. It is therefore wise to have a blood test to see if you have a deficiency. If you don't get out much, have a darker complexion, are overweight or older, there is a very good chance that your body cannot make enough vitamin D.
The link between vitamin D and the coronavirus
There has been confusion for some time regarding susceptibility to the corona virus and vitamin D deficiency. An increasing number of health scientists and medical experts argue that an individual can reduce the risk of corona by taking additional supplementation through a dietary supplement.
Several studies show a link between higher mortality rates from corona and a deficiency of this vitamin. Not surprising of course, when you consider that your immune system is seriously weakened by a deficiency.
For this study, the twenty countries that were most severely affected by corona were examined. The countries with the highest mortality rates, including Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom, measured lower levels throughout the population, than in countries that were less severely affected.
Vitamin D supplement from Puori available at Sirius
Furthermore, we can get it from certain foods. Mainly it can be found in (fresh) fish, eggs and avocado. Yet many people, especially in colder regions such as the Netherlands, have a (serious) shortage.
The sun does not shine enough during the year to provide us with the amount our bodies need. From September to March the sun does not shine bright enough in colder regions, including northern Europe. Moreover, many people tend to sit inside, even in the months when the sun does shine sufficiently.
People with darker skin tones are especially susceptible to a shortage. Obese people and the elderly also need to take extra care. It's best to supplement your deficiency with a vitamin D supplement.
Why is vitamin D important?
It plays a role in the proper functioning of the immune system. It is therefore not surprising that people with a deficiency are more susceptible to the coronavirus. It is also important for maintaining strong bones and teeth. It also ensures healthy muscles.
Calcium and strong bones
The most important role of vitamin D is to obtain and maintain a healthy bone structure. It does this by, among other things, maintaining the levels of calcium and phosphate in the blood. Vitamin D ensures that the intestines can absorb calcium and that our bones release enough calcium so that it can enter the blood.
Vitamin D's function is to maintain a healthy immune system. Many cells in our body that are important in protecting our body from disease, bacteria and viruses need vitamin D to function.
An example of this is so-called killer cells.
Another important role of the sunshine vitamin, is to maintain healthy muscles. For example, it helps muscles to contract normally. It also helps synthesize proteins, building blocks for muscle mass.
Protection against cancer, respiratory infections and Alzheimer's
Several studies show that vitamin D deficiency increases the risk of various diseases and disorders.
For example, one study shows that both children and adults are more likely to have respiratory problems, such as asthma, when they are deficient. (Source: Serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels in patients with Granulomatosis with Polyangiitis: association with respiratory infection", Perez, MO, December 2017.)
Are you deficient?
According to the Dutch Society of General Practitioners, about 50% of elderly people living at home have insufficient vitamin D levels. In residents in a care facility, this is as high as 85 to 90%.
There are a number of symptoms that can indicate that your body has too little of this important sunshine vitamin.
In the long run, a deficiency can manifest itself in certain diseases and conditions. For example, you are more likely to develop Type 2 Diabetes, certain types of cancer and cardiovascular disease.
The following are some signs that may show that you have a deficiency. Of course, these symptoms may also be the result of another cause.
- Being tired and having little energy
- Anxiety attacks
- Pain, tremors or cramps in the muscles
- Weaker bones
Cheap, easy and safe measure
We already knew that vitamin D is important for a properly functioning body. If you're deficient, it's important for your own health to supplement through a dietary supplement, or move to a warm place where the sun is shining brightly.
Now that we know vitamin D can help better protect our bodies from corona and thereby lower the severity of the virus, everyone is advised to get started with it. It is a cheap, easy and safe way to give yourself and each other extra protection.
Taking a vitamin D supplement is not a replacement for the coronavirus vaccine. It is understandable that many people have fears about this. Too little is known about the potential risks. Time will tell us the implications of the vaccin.
One of the best things you can do for yourself is to go outside every day. Give yourself that fresh air, whether it's raining, cold, or sunny weather. The more you get outside, the more opportunity your body has to absorb vitamin D. Furthermore, you get exercise and extra oxygen.
There are several ways you can make it easier for yourself to get outside more. For example, by choosing to walk or cycle to work or school. You can also get into the habit of going for a walk at a set time in the evening or morning, all the better if you have a dog. Humans and animals are not made to sit inside for hours, days in a row. This makes you less strong and more susceptible to all kinds of diseases.
If you teach yourself this spring and summer to take the time to go outside every day, you will notice the effect in time. Eventually you will become so fond of it that going outside is no longer a chore, but a rewarding way to clear your head, find peace in yourself and strengthen your body and mind so that you are better protected against diseases and viruses, including corona.
Blog picture: Johann Melchior Dinglinger - Sun mask with facial features of August II (the Strong) as Apollo, the Sun God
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