- Researchers in Spain have provided a fascinating coronavirus update in the form of a study that found a high probability that vitamin D deficiency could explain why so many people there were hospitalized with the coronavirus over a period of time.
- However, research found no link between the vitamin deficiency and the severity of the coronavirus case.
- More research is needed to determine the exact nature of the interaction between vitamin D and the COVID-19 coronavirus.
Slowly but surely, scientists and researchers are beginning to understand at least some of the most mysterious aspects of the COVID-19 coronavirus – for example, why some people develop such a severe infection while the virus seems to miss other people completely.
One of the latest coronavirus updates we have is a new study by researchers from Spain, particularly the Marques de Valdecilla University Hospital in Santander, that looked at patients for similarities early in the pandemic for a period of time. Interestingly, more than 80% of a group of 216 COVID-19 patients who were hospitalized between March 10 and March 31 were found to be vitamin D deficient.
Vitamin D, a hormone made by the kidneys, affects how the body’s immune system works and also controls the levels of calcium in the blood. The authors of this study decided to take a closer look at the nutritional levels of these patients as it was increasingly believed that it appears to play a role in the development of COVID-19 infection.
Among the results of the study, it was found that 82% of patients with coronavirus infection so severe that they had to be hospitalized were vitamin D deficient. In addition, it was found that vitamin D levels in these coronavirus patients are “particularly low” in men compared to women.
Dr. Jose Hernandez, co-author of the study and adjunct professor of neurophysiology at the University of Cantabria in Spain, said there are a variety of comorbidities, as well as general lifestyle habits, that could explain why men seemed to have more of the problem here than women. In an email to a Canadian news agency, Hernandez added, “There is ample evidence in the literature to support the beneficial effects of vitamin D on the immune system, particularly in terms of protecting against infections, including viral infections.” in vitamin D has also been linked to problems such as cancer, diabetes, and heart disease.
One important conclusion that researchers in Spain were unable to draw from these findings is related to the severity of a COVID-19 infection. In other words, while the data suggested that vitamin D deficiency could explain an increase in coronavirus-related hospitalizations, no correlation was found between vitamin levels and disease severity.
Andy is a Memphis reporter who also contributes to outlets like Fast Company and The Guardian. When he’s not writing about technology, he’s hunched over his burgeoning vinyl collection protectively, cultivating his Whovianism, and playing a variety of TV shows you probably don’t like.
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