Can Vitamin D help boost our immune system?
The worlds a scary place at the moment, I like the majority of the world are experiencing unprecedented times during the Corona pandemic. There has been several reports/studies over the last few weeks regarding vitamin D and whether it has a role in helping our immune systems fight off the infection.
Vitamin D usually coined ‘the sunshine vitamin’ has an important role in supporting our immune function fight off infections however no evidence has shown that vitamin D can stop us from getting an infection like COVID-19. I note some small studies have found that individuals who are vitamin D deficient have an increased risk of developing complications however it’s worth taking these results with caution, the studies were observational and therefore not the gold standard blind trials therefore more research is needed.
Vitamin D is not only important in supporting our immune system but has a variety of important roles for example in our bone health, linked to dermatological disorders such as psoriasis, regulates insulin and much more!
We obtain vitamin D largely from sunlight during the months of April-September; in the winter months in the U.K. all adults are recommended to take 10ug of vitamin D. We also obtain vitamin D from a limited number of food sources such as fish, mushrooms and eggs - although the amount of vitamin D can vary depending on the feed animals are having, differences in food practices, deterioration of vitamin D on storage.
Now during the corona pandemic people have been recommended to stay at home and for those without a garden they may have been exposed to less of the sunshine than others therefore may not be synthesising vitamin D as sufficiently. Therefore for those people who are spending large quantities of time indoors a vitamin D supplement be worthwhile considering.
So there you have it although Vitamin D plays an important part in supporting our immune system there’s no evidence that vitamin D can help prevent us from getting Vitamin D instead I would recommend to follow the government guidelines and wash your hands, avoid touching your face, and stay 2m away during social interactions.