Low vitamin D status ‘almost certainly promotes Covid deaths’, doctors say

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Over 100 doctors, researchers and healthcare workers have written an open letter to governments around the world urging them to urgently implement whole population vitamin D supplementation programmes. 

In an open letter the doctors argue that research shows low vitamin D levels “almost certainly promote COVID-19 infections, hospitalisations, and deaths”. 

They write: “Many factors are known to predispose individuals to higher risk from exposure to SARS-CoV-2, such as age, being male, comorbidities, etc., but inadequate vitamin D is by far the most easily and quickly modifiable risk factor with abundant evidence to support a large effect. Vitamin D is inexpensive and has negligible risk compared to the considerable risk of COVID-19.”

The doctors say that vitamin D modulates thousands of genes and many aspects of immune function. The say that newly published research shows that:

  • Higher vitamin D blood levels are associated with lower rates of SARS-CoV-2 infection.
  • Higher D levels are associated with lower risk of a severe case (hospitalization, ICU, or death).
  • Intervention studies (including RCTs) indicate that vitamin D can be a very effective treatment.
  • Many papers reveal several biological mechanisms by which vitamin D influences COVID-19.
  • Causal inference modelling, Hill’s criteria, the intervention studies & the biological mechanisms indicate that vitamin D’s influence on COVID-19 is very likely causal, not just correlation.

In their letter, the doctors add: “There is no case for delaying clinical trials to increase use of something so safe, especially when remedying high rates of deficiency/insufficiency should already be a priority.”

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash