How To Cautiously Use Vitamin D To Protect Yourself From COVID-19

Yes, vitamin D will help, but watch your levels.

Exploring the link between Vitamin D and COVID-19 has been excruciatingly complex. At first you think, “If I take more vitamin D, I’ll be protected,” and then you read, “If you take too much vitamin D, you’ll die.”

It was regrettable to see CNN talk about Vitamin D being “an internet sensation” instead of focusing on the benefits of the vitamin on the immune system from a scientific perspective. So I decided to give it a fair chance and see for myself just how beneficial and detrimental the supplement would be for me against COVID-19.

It’s not a difficult concept to digest: vitamin D increases immune system function, COVID-19 decreases immune system function, so… the D you get, the happier your body is… (That’s what she said…)

Vitamin D is produced by the body through a process in the skin induced by UVB light, primarily coming from the Sun. What makes things complicated is the fact that this vitamin D production is directly dependent upon the amount of melanin in the skin. Melanin, which inherently causes skin pigmentation, tends to lower the skin’s ability to produce vitamin D in response to sunlight exposure, which has led to some studies showing that older adults with darker skin may be more at high risk of vitamin D deficiency.

But the scientific voices are clashing on this assertion.

CNN says,

According to the Institute of Medicine of The National Academies’ Food and Nutrition Board, the recommended daily dose of vitamin D for anyone over age 4 is 600 IU/day in the US. For anyone over 70 years of age in the US, the dose goes up to 800 IU/day. In the UK, the recommended daily amount is 400 IU/day.

And this isn’t wrong, per say. If you had a sufficient level of vitamin D in your body, you wouldn’t need more than a few IU to assume you were slightly and safely more than “sufficient” in your daily vitamin D intake. The problem is that not everyone is the same.

So we need to test ourselves. We need to know our own vitamin D levels and immune system functionality. There are surprisingly a lot of home vitamin D tests available online and they range in price starting from around $50. While this may seem a bit expensive for just one test, as a monthly expense it may be affordable for most middle class people.