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As doctors and scientists continue their attempts to discover more about the novel coronavirus, we are flooded with new research every day. A recent study from Leumit Health Services (LHS) and the Azrieli Faculty of Medicine of Bar-llan University in Israel has now found out that people with a vitamin D deficiency are at a higher risk of getting infected with covid-19.
Previously-conducted studies have already established a correlation between lower vitamin D status and higher risks of respiratory tract diseases. However, they were only based on data gathered from population groups of developing countries and hence could not be extrapolated upon the populations of more developed ones owing up to external factors.
The role of vitamin D in the human body is to regulate the amount of calcium and phosphate, both of which are important for healthy bones, muscles and teeth. Vitamin D is essentially a hormone that is produced in the skin, when exposed to sunlight.
The findings of the study are published The FEBS Journal on molecular, cellular, and biochemical life science
In the study, a team of Israeli researchers aimed at evaluating associations of low plasma vitamin D level with the likelihood of risk of covid-19, leading up to hospitalization across the world. Upon examining the data of 7,807 people who recently underwent a covid-19 test as well as a vitamin D blood test, they found an independent association between the two.
According to the study, the mean plasma vitamin D level was significantly lower in the 782 people (10.1%) who tested positive, as compared to the 7,025 (89.9%) negative cases. It was also observed that these covid-19 positive cases were younger and most likely to be male.
The authors wrote that, “In analyses, age over 50 years, male gender and low-medium socioeconomic status were also positively associated with the risk of covid-19 infection; age over 50 years was positively associated with the likelihood of hospitalisation due to coronavirus.”
“Univariate analysis demonstrated an association between low plasma level and increased likelihood of Covid-19 infection and of hospitalization due to the SARS-CoV-2 virus,” they noted.