Vitamin D and covid-19

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Kawasaki-like disease – Covonavirus risks for children

An urgent alert has been issued to GPs after several children presented with symptoms similar to Kawasaki disease – a potentially fatal syndrome that affects blood vessels – including a high temperature, low blood pressure, a rash and difficulty breathing.

Kawasaki and vitamin D deficiency

Kawasaki has long been associated with vitamin D deficiency. This quote from a 2016 scientific paper:- “recent studies have shown that vitamin D insufficiency or deficiency is associated with Kawasaki disease. Vitamin D insufficiency or deficiency may affect Kawasaki disease via its influence on inflammatory response, adipokine, endothelial function, platelet function, and DNA methylation and increase the risk of coronary artery lesions. The article reviews the research advances in the association between vitamin D and Kawasaki disease and possible mechanisms of action.”

BMJ Journal Volume 74, Issue Supplement 2:Kawasaki disease  is an acute febrile systemic vasculitisin childhood that is associated with inflammatory cytokines, in which the vascular inflammation results in damage to the coronary arteries. Vitamin D plays an important role in the regulation of immunity, and several studies demonstrate that its active form 25(OH)VIT exhibits anti-inflammatory activities and modulate the inflammatory response in the systemic vasculitis.”

Sun bathing

Because of warnings about skin cancer,  children are usually covered with sun cream when they go out it the sun – so they don’t get any vitamin D from sunbathing! Vitamin D is needed to fight infection in the first place and – where there is already a borderline deficiency – fighting the infection will seriously exacerbate that deficiency. That worsening deficiency can lead to inflammation

During the winter, of course, the sun isn’t strong enough anyway to produce vitamin D in the skin – even without sun cream – so vitamin D deficiency is widespread among the population – except where people are taking a vitamin D supplement

Multi-system inflammatory disease

Professor Rosalind Smyth, a consultant in paediatric respiratory medicine at Great Ormond Street Hospital said, “our understanding of this condition in children is limited. We should investigate fully these children who present with a multi-system inflammatory disease to assess whether this is a presentation of Covid-19.

Kawasaki has long been associated with vitamin D deficiency! Yet there is no mention of vitamin D deficiency’s role in inflammatory conditions in relation to the children presenting with Kawasaki-like symptoms!

Vitamin D deficiency inflammation in the elderly

The elderly are known to be at greater risk of serious complication and death from Covid-19. It is also the case that older adults are at increased risk of poor vitamin D status due to the lack of sun exposure and to an age-related decline in the efficiency of vitamin D synthesis and metabolism.

Recent evidence suggests that low vitamin D concentrations are associated with increased levels of inflammatory markers.  The study contributes significantly to the body of evidence supporting a potential anti-inflammatory role for vitamin D in older individuals from the general population.

Will the ‘wise’ government advisers ever see what is hiding in plain sight? If there had been as much encouragement to take a vitamin D supplement as there as been to wash our hands and stay at home – I wonder if  the UK mortality figures would be anything like what they are now!

Less vitamin D from sunshine

We are hearing a lot about the fact that black and Asian people are accounting for a disproportionate number of critical complications and deaths with Covid-19. A number of reasons for that are being put forward – such as poverty and over-crowding.

Strangely – one cause seems to be being overlooked. The darker your skin colour, the less vitamin D you absorb from sunshine. Vitamin D is absolutely critical for immunity. The deficiency can seriously impair your ability to deal with infection.

Welfare Foods Service

In 1942, in the midst of World War II, Britain’s Ministry of Food announced the Welfare Foods Service. The new program was to provide free or subsidised cod liver oil, fruit juices, and milk to all children under the age of five, as well as to pregnant mothers, regardless of income. These were considered essential to ensure that children were getting vital nutrients.

Cod liver oil would have supplied vitamin D!

This was stopped in 1962. Months later, member of Parliament, Frank Allaun (Salford East) challenged that decision pointing out that The Minister does not really know whether the necessary vitamins are being obtained because it will be some time before the signs become evident.”

Fake news

It is interesting to consider that the UK Government once understood enough about nutrition to provide free supplementation to all children and pregnant women

The current government, however, while having absolutely nothing to offer in terms of a cure – insists that such nutritional supplements are “fake news of the worst kind“.

I suggest that the worst kind of fake news, right now,  is the government’s disparagement of nutritional wisdom once held dear by the government!

And yet . . .

A recent report states that ministry of Defence sources report that troops on the front line of Covid-19 are to be offered vitamin D. An MoD spokesman said that, in order to help troops stay healthy and available for duty it was “considering what additional measures can help their immune systems to stay fighting fit“.

 

Just to underscore:

Inflammation is the serious complication in Covid.

Vitamin D deficiency can cause inflammation!

This has been known forever!!!!

 

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