Immunomodulatory Effects of Vitamin D and Prevention of Respiratory Tract Infections and COVID-19

The review examines the potential role of Vitamin D as a protective factor against the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), commonly known as COVID-19. It addresses a critical gap in understanding how suboptimal Vitamin D levels may contribute to immune dysfunction and increase the susceptibility to respiratory tract infections (RTIs) and viral infections. The review specifically focuses on the impact of Vitamin D supplementation, particularly dosages between 2000–4000 IU, which have been shown to decrease the incidence and complications associated with RTIs, respiratory distress syndrome, and pneumonia. This suggests a beneficial role for Vitamin D supplementation in potentially reducing infection-related complications and mortality, especially in populations at higher risk.

Furthermore, the review emphasizes the need for more research to explore the relationship between Vitamin D status and RTIs, including COVID-19. While existing evidence indicates a promising link, it also points to the necessity for further investigation to fully establish Vitamin D supplementation as an effective nutritional strategy for reducing the risk and severity of infections like COVID-19. The review serves as a call for more comprehensive studies to better understand the immunomodulatory effects of Vitamin D and its potential as a preventive and therapeutic agent in the context of respiratory infections and broader immune health challenges​​.

Original Publication:

Shoemaker, M. E., Huynh, L. M., Smith, C. M., Mustad, V. A., Duarte, M. O., & Cramer, J. T. (2022). Immunomodulatory Effects of Vitamin D and Prevention of Respiratory Tract Infections and COVID-19. Topics in Clinical Nutrition, 37(3), 203-217.

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