Vitamins That May Help Protect Against COVID-19

Common Deficiencies Can Lower Your Immunity

Several months into the pandemic, maintaining distance from people who have the virus and following recommended hygiene practices are the only ways to prevent contracting COVID-19.

There is no magic formula that will vanquish the virus. That said, research points to key nutrients that bolster the immune system and may protect from contagious diseases.

Vitamins to Help Maintain Your Immune System

  • Vitamin D

    Low levels of vitamin D are associated with hyperactive immune responses.

    Deficiency and COVID-19

    In research that looked at the records of more than 4,000 Chicagoans who received COVID-19 tests in March and April, those with vitamin D deficiency were 77 percent more likely to have tested positive for the virus than people with a normal amount of this nutrient.

    In another study, of data from 10 countries, Northwestern University researchers found a link between COVID-19 mortality rates and vitamin D deficiency.

  • Potassium

    Naturopathic physician Kara Fitzgerald, ND, points out the imbalance of potassium and sodium in the US population, where, she says, we get about three times the amount of sodium we need and less than 10 percent of the potassium.

    Deficiency and COVID-19

    A study Dr. Fitzgerald cites found that nearly all COVID-19 patients in one Chinese cohort had low serum potassium, and those with a deficiency prior to contracting the illness did worse than those whose potassium levels dropped because of the virus.

    Fitzgerald recommends a diet high in potassium-rich foods, including many vegetables, fruits, beans, and fermented soy foods.

Sources: 

“Exploring the links between coronavirus and vitamin D” by Anahad O’Connor, www.NYTimes.com, 6/10/20

“Low serum potassium in COVID-19 and thoughts on interventions” by Kara Fitzgerald, www.drkarafitzgerald.com, 4/20

“Vitamin D levels appear to play role in COVID-19 mortality rate” by Amanda Morris, Northwestern University, www.ScienceDaily.com, 5/20

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About Nan Fornal

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