The University of Southampton
University of Southampton Institutional Repository

Vitamin D and SARS-CoV-2 Virus/COVID-19 disease

Vitamin D and SARS-CoV-2 Virus/COVID-19 disease
Vitamin D and SARS-CoV-2 Virus/COVID-19 disease
The spread of novel SARS-CoV-2 virus, and the disease COVID-19 that is caused by SARS-CoV-2, continues apace. Saving lives and slowing the worldwide pandemic remain of utmost importance to everyone: the public, healthcare professionals, scientists, industry and governments. It is absolutely essential that advice given to the public is evidence-based, accurate and timely; anything less would mislead and has the potential to cause harm. Popular information channels, such as social media platforms, have been rife with misinformation that has been perpetuated by fear and uncertainty. This has been the case particularly for diet and lifestyle advice. There are recommendations for the prevention of the spread of COVID-19 from the WHO,1 the UK,2 Irish3 and USA4 governments and the European Commission,5 as well as public health and healthcare agencies, including key direction on self-isolation.6 This short original report aims to provide a balanced scientific view on vitamin D and SARS-CoV-2 virus/COVID-19 disease. It provides a succinct summary of the current scientific evidence of associations between vitamin D, influenza, upper respiratory tract infections (URTIs) and immune health. Importantly, the paper concludes with lifestyle strategies for avoiding vitamin D deficiency and ensuring a healthy balanced diet at any time, including during the current pandemic. The overarching messages are as follows: (1) Vitamin D is essential for good health. (2) Many people, particularly those living in northern latitudes (such as the UK, Ireland, Northern Europe, Canada and the northern parts of the USA, northern India and China), have poor vitamin D status, especially in winter or if confined indoors. (3) Low vitamin D status may be exacerbated during this COVID-19 crisis (eg, due to indoor living and hence reduced sun exposure), and anyone who is self-isolating with limited access to sunlight is advised to take a vitamin D supplement according to their government’s recommendations for the general population (ie, 400IU/day for the UK7 and 600IU/ day for the USA (800IU for >70 years))8 and the European Union (EU).9 (4) There is no strong scientific evidence to show that very high intakes (ie, mega supplements) of vitamin D will be beneficial in preventing or treating COVID-19. (5) There are evidenced health risks with excessive vitamin D intakes especially for those with other health issues such as a reduced kidney function.
Lanham-New, Susan
41a76d28-ab9a-43d5-929b-0c4c7030db8e
Webb, Ann R
95f7e9b3-e613-4167-a991-5a82fbd3d0ba
Cashman, Kevin D.
9a569460-924c-4402-b21c-cd8d1a873c46
Buttriss, Judith L.
29ad097c-8088-46a6-82e3-f7833f71139e
Fallowfield, Joanne L.
23c18744-6b1c-4596-9de2-a78e82dbc423
Masud, Tahir
ef1fc17c-f133-4635-82bb-547b58521ceb
Hewison, Martin
3abdca66-cd2c-4620-8815-f16cf6109eb8
Matthews, John C.
c0b5a4d1-56d5-4969-80c4-5e8b8a9b6b88
Kiely, Mairead
f63b8f57-7a2f-4503-80a8-0357fd18df2e
Welch, Ailsa
b485df93-b233-4d9d-837e-e1036fac8b72
Ward, Kate
39bd4db1-c948-4e32-930e-7bec8deb54c7
Magee, Pamela
99badeee-79f6-4a8c-b9cb-ca22aa6c5301
Darling, Andrea L.
61abd709-55d0-4cdc-b0e4-4906f717b8b8
Hill, Tom R.
bcb4318d-911b-452d-9421-de5884b94f3d
Greig, Carolyn
07fbb52c-daa3-4689-83d9-64031e1422c8
Smith, Colin P.
af4a77e6-8d05-479c-869d-a4a76741477d
Murphy, Richard
c0b17558-fd51-4617-a307-9e92549c360e
Leyland, Sarah
e6dd6698-569c-481f-af9d-e3ffcde68ee3
Bouillon, Roger
490f4ea7-9b00-4d1f-b064-bad4b7634cdd
Ray, Sumantra
3ffd0745-148f-4a89-b255-7fcaba5591de
Kohlmeier, Martin
b7eac432-8cec-4e48-8fe1-13f0d56478f2
Lanham-New, Susan
41a76d28-ab9a-43d5-929b-0c4c7030db8e
Webb, Ann R
95f7e9b3-e613-4167-a991-5a82fbd3d0ba
Cashman, Kevin D.
9a569460-924c-4402-b21c-cd8d1a873c46
Buttriss, Judith L.
29ad097c-8088-46a6-82e3-f7833f71139e
Fallowfield, Joanne L.
23c18744-6b1c-4596-9de2-a78e82dbc423
Masud, Tahir
ef1fc17c-f133-4635-82bb-547b58521ceb
Hewison, Martin
3abdca66-cd2c-4620-8815-f16cf6109eb8
Matthews, John C.
c0b5a4d1-56d5-4969-80c4-5e8b8a9b6b88
Kiely, Mairead
f63b8f57-7a2f-4503-80a8-0357fd18df2e
Welch, Ailsa
b485df93-b233-4d9d-837e-e1036fac8b72
Ward, Kate
39bd4db1-c948-4e32-930e-7bec8deb54c7
Magee, Pamela
99badeee-79f6-4a8c-b9cb-ca22aa6c5301
Darling, Andrea L.
61abd709-55d0-4cdc-b0e4-4906f717b8b8
Hill, Tom R.
bcb4318d-911b-452d-9421-de5884b94f3d
Greig, Carolyn
07fbb52c-daa3-4689-83d9-64031e1422c8
Smith, Colin P.
af4a77e6-8d05-479c-869d-a4a76741477d
Murphy, Richard
c0b17558-fd51-4617-a307-9e92549c360e
Leyland, Sarah
e6dd6698-569c-481f-af9d-e3ffcde68ee3
Bouillon, Roger
490f4ea7-9b00-4d1f-b064-bad4b7634cdd
Ray, Sumantra
3ffd0745-148f-4a89-b255-7fcaba5591de
Kohlmeier, Martin
b7eac432-8cec-4e48-8fe1-13f0d56478f2

Lanham-New, Susan, Webb, Ann R, Cashman, Kevin D., Buttriss, Judith L., Fallowfield, Joanne L., Masud, Tahir, Hewison, Martin, Matthews, John C., Kiely, Mairead, Welch, Ailsa, Ward, Kate, Magee, Pamela, Darling, Andrea L., Hill, Tom R., Greig, Carolyn, Smith, Colin P., Murphy, Richard, Leyland, Sarah, Bouillon, Roger, Ray, Sumantra and Kohlmeier, Martin (2020) Vitamin D and SARS-CoV-2 Virus/COVID-19 disease. BMJ Nutrition, Prevention & Health. (doi:10.1136/bmjnph-2020-000089).

Record type: Article

Abstract

The spread of novel SARS-CoV-2 virus, and the disease COVID-19 that is caused by SARS-CoV-2, continues apace. Saving lives and slowing the worldwide pandemic remain of utmost importance to everyone: the public, healthcare professionals, scientists, industry and governments. It is absolutely essential that advice given to the public is evidence-based, accurate and timely; anything less would mislead and has the potential to cause harm. Popular information channels, such as social media platforms, have been rife with misinformation that has been perpetuated by fear and uncertainty. This has been the case particularly for diet and lifestyle advice. There are recommendations for the prevention of the spread of COVID-19 from the WHO,1 the UK,2 Irish3 and USA4 governments and the European Commission,5 as well as public health and healthcare agencies, including key direction on self-isolation.6 This short original report aims to provide a balanced scientific view on vitamin D and SARS-CoV-2 virus/COVID-19 disease. It provides a succinct summary of the current scientific evidence of associations between vitamin D, influenza, upper respiratory tract infections (URTIs) and immune health. Importantly, the paper concludes with lifestyle strategies for avoiding vitamin D deficiency and ensuring a healthy balanced diet at any time, including during the current pandemic. The overarching messages are as follows: (1) Vitamin D is essential for good health. (2) Many people, particularly those living in northern latitudes (such as the UK, Ireland, Northern Europe, Canada and the northern parts of the USA, northern India and China), have poor vitamin D status, especially in winter or if confined indoors. (3) Low vitamin D status may be exacerbated during this COVID-19 crisis (eg, due to indoor living and hence reduced sun exposure), and anyone who is self-isolating with limited access to sunlight is advised to take a vitamin D supplement according to their government’s recommendations for the general population (ie, 400IU/day for the UK7 and 600IU/ day for the USA (800IU for >70 years))8 and the European Union (EU).9 (4) There is no strong scientific evidence to show that very high intakes (ie, mega supplements) of vitamin D will be beneficial in preventing or treating COVID-19. (5) There are evidenced health risks with excessive vitamin D intakes especially for those with other health issues such as a reduced kidney function.

Text
Vitamin DConsensusReportFinalVersion280420CleanFinal - Accepted Manuscript
Download (43kB)
Text
bmjnph-2020-000089.full
Download (298kB)

More information

Accepted/In Press date: 30 April 2020
e-pub ahead of print date: 13 May 2020

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 452570
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/452570
PURE UUID: ca50e719-c51f-4111-8447-30e65482eda6
ORCID for Kate Ward: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-7034-6750

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 11 Dec 2021 11:27
Last modified: 03 Sep 2022 01:52

Export record

Altmetrics

Contributors

Author: Susan Lanham-New
Author: Ann R Webb
Author: Kevin D. Cashman
Author: Judith L. Buttriss
Author: Joanne L. Fallowfield
Author: Tahir Masud
Author: Martin Hewison
Author: John C. Matthews
Author: Mairead Kiely
Author: Ailsa Welch
Author: Kate Ward ORCID iD
Author: Pamela Magee
Author: Andrea L. Darling
Author: Tom R. Hill
Author: Carolyn Greig
Author: Colin P. Smith
Author: Richard Murphy
Author: Sarah Leyland
Author: Roger Bouillon
Author: Sumantra Ray
Author: Martin Kohlmeier

Download statistics

Downloads from ePrints over the past year. Other digital versions may also be available to download e.g. from the publisher's website.

View more statistics

Atom RSS 1.0 RSS 2.0

Contact ePrints Soton: eprints@soton.ac.uk

ePrints Soton supports OAI 2.0 with a base URL of http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/cgi/oai2

This repository has been built using EPrints software, developed at the University of Southampton, but available to everyone to use.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive cookies on the University of Southampton website.

×