Does extra vitamin D help against corona?

Last autumn it was in the news: vitamin D helps against corona. At the time, experts advised everyone to take extra vitamin D, and many people started doing that. But does it really help prevent corona?

No, there is too little research available to properly assess whether vitamin D supplements can contribute to the prevention of COVID-19, says the Health Council in response to questions from the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport. Sufficient research is available into the prevention of other acute respiratory infections, but the Health Council sees no reason to adjust the existing supplementation advice for vitamin D.

Good functioning of the immune system

Vitamin D plays a role in the proper functioning of the immune system. The State Secretary for Health, Welfare, and Sport has asked the Health Council for advice on the possible role of vitamin D in combating the COVID-19 pandemic. For a number of groups, the advice already exists to take vitamin D supplements. The council has now examined whether science gives cause for advising other groups to take extra vitamin D for the prevention of corona.

Too little research available

That is not necessary, says the Health Council. There is too little quality research available to demonstrate the preventive effect of taking extra vitamin D. It cannot be ruled out either, but there is insufficient evidence to adjust the existing supplementation advice for vitamin D.

Who is advised to take extra vitamin D?

The advice to take vitamin D supplements for good bone health has been valid for a number of groups for some time. But not all of these groups always do. This concerns children up to the age of 4, people who produce too little vitamin D in the skin because they receive little sunlight or have dark skin, pregnant women, women aged 50 and older, and men aged 70 and over.

Can it hurt to take extra vitamin D if you don’t belong to the above groups?

It is rare for people to take too much vitamin D. Do you rarely go out? Then it is best to take some extra vitamin D. Especially in winter because sunlight is the most important source of vitamin D. The dosage as recommended by the Health Council, but also the higher dosage of 20-30 micrograms that the experts recommend is safe to take. Only if you take too many supplements for too long can it be dangerous. You can read more about it in these articles: Can you also get too many vitamins? and Supplements against corona: what makes sense – and what doesn’t?.

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