vitamin D Corona COVID

Inadequate vitamin D supply increases the risk of acute respiratory infections.

Author: Tatjana Weidner (Master of Science, Technical Biology)

: 2021-05-26

Image for article Inadequate vitamin D supply increases the risk of acute respiratory infections.

Inadequate vitamin D supply increases the risk of acute respiratory infections.

It has been scientifically proven that an adequate vitamin D supply contributes significantly to a well-functioning immune system and results in a strong immune defense.3 Unfortunately, only less than half of adults in Germany reach an adequate vitamin D level, thus exposing themselves to an increased risk of acute respiratory infections, according to the Federal Institute for Risk Assessment. Especially in light of the current global situation, one might conclude to take vitamin D supplements immediately, thoughtlessly, and regularly to protect oneself.

But beware! This is a dangerous approach, especially since the BfR also clearly warns of the health risks of preventively taking high-dose vitamin D supplements (e.g., acute kidney failure) without considering the individual vitamin D status.

What is clear is that individuals with low vitamin D levels benefit from controlled vitamin D supplementation, thereby strengthening their immune system and arming themselves for possible infection. What there is no evidence for so far, however, is that individuals with an already adequate vitamin D status (BfR: ≥20 ng/ml or ≥50 nmol/L) can trigger an additional health-promoting effect by raising their vitamin D level with increased supplementation.

It is tremendously important that monitoring of actual status be performed in parallel with any vitamin D supplementation, to which dosing can then be adjusted.

When was the last time you checked your vitamin D status?

What is your current vitamin D level?

Avoid the increased risk of acute respiratory illness by checking and responding to your vitamin D status.

1 Heseker H: Ernährungssituation in Deutschland. Versorgungssituation der deutschen Bevölkerung mit ausgewählten Nährstoffen anhand der Ergebnisse der Studie zur Gesundheit Erwachsener in Deutschland (DEGS). In: Deutsche Gesellschaft für Ernährung (Hrsg.): 13. DGE-Ernährungsbericht. Bonn (2016) 41–64
2 Vitamin D, das Immunsystem und COVID-19, Mitteilung Nr. 015/2021 des BfR vom 14. Mai 2021
3 Reviewed in Martens PJ, Gysemans C, Verstuyf A, Mathieu AC. Vitamin D's Effect on Immune Function. Nutrients. 2020 Apr 28;12(5):1248. doi: 10.3390/nu12051248. PMID: 32353972; PMCID: PMC7281985.

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