COVID-19 AND PROTECTIVE NUTRIENTS (Vit D, B-12, Magnesium, and Selenium) / Vitamin A and Norovirus
B12, Vitamin D and Magnesium for Seniors with COVID
I have, in a previous newsletter, already covered the importance of vitamin D status when facing possible infection from COVID. Now, a new Chinese study set out to “evaluate the effect of combination Vitamin D, Magnesium and Vitamin B12 (DMB) on progression to severe outcome in older COVID-19 patients”.
The researchers, comparing patients who were given DMB with those who did not receive the supplement mix, hypothesized that “fewer patients administered DMB would require oxygen therapy and/or intensive care support than those who did not”.
The patients in this study were given 1000 IU of vitamin D3, 150 mg of magnesium, and 500 mcg of vitamin B12, (all via oral delivery), upon admission to hospital, if they did not require oxygen therapy.
The conclusion of this study was a positive endorsement of using these three nutrients to help treat seniors who have COVID-19.
To wit: “DMB combination in older COVID-19 patients was associated with a significant reduction in proportion of patients with clinical deterioration requiring oxygen support and/or intensive care support. This study supports further larger randomized control trials to ascertain the full benefit of DMB in ameliorating COVID-19 severity.” (Source)
And of course, if these three nutrients can help treat the virus, along with alleviating symptoms, it is probably a good idea for everyone, senior or not, to ensure they have adequate levels of vitamin D, magnesium, and B12.
For more on the subject of vitamin B12 see this earlier blog of mine.
For more on the subject of vitamin D view, or download, our free e-book on the subject.
For more on the subject of magnesium see this overview.
Selenium and COVID
A few weeks ago I covered the importance of selenium, particularly its antiviral properties. (Selenium newsletter) Here I will briefly touch on a direct association between selenium deficiency and COVID-19.
A new study titled, “Association between regional selenium status and reported outcome of COVID-19 cases in China”, was released on the 28th of April.
China is a unique place to make such an observation, as it has a belt of selenium deficient soil running from the northeast to the southwest. Thus, China has vast groups of people with the lowest selenium status in the world, along with populations that have the highest selenium status in the world.
Given the evidence of selenium’s antiviral effects, established by many previous studies, it was no surprise to the researchers that their results showed “an association between the reported cure rates for COVID-19 and selenium status”.
The study concluded with this explanation of how selenium works against viruses: “Indeed, multiple cellular and viral mechanisms involving selenium and selenoproteins could influence viral pathogenicity, including virally encoded selenium-dependent glutathione peroxidases. Such viral mechanisms could contribute to the well-documented oxidative stress associated with many RNA virus infections; increased viral replication (hence increased mutation rate); and observed higher pathogenicity or mortality under selenium deficiency, as reported here for SARS-CoV-2.” (Source)
As I have mentioned previously, in my opinion the best selenium supplement is derived from yeast, the patented version being SelenoExcell ™ , an ingredient you can find in our NutriPods and Mineral Mix products.
Antiviral Effect of Vitamin A on Norovirus Infection
As long as we are on the subject of viruses, I will include this bit on one of my favorite nutrients, vitamin A. While not related to lung viruses, vitamin A has been used to treat noroviruses, which are common throughout North America, and are very infectious. Noroviruses cause gastroenteritis, symptoms of which usually include diarrhea, and/or vomiting.
A study from 2016 sought to examine “the effect and underlying mechanism of vitamin A on norovirus infection”. Particularly, the study “aimed to investigate how vitamin A administration affects the gut microbiome after norovirus infection”.
They took this tack since it is well established that the gut microbiota plays an important role in immunity, along with a wide range of health conditions, and medicine is now looking at “modulation of gut microbiota as a therapeutic strategy”.
According to this study, currently “there is no effective treatment of norovirus infection, though vitamin A has been suggested to have an antiviral effect in an epidemiological study.” (Epidemiology is the study of how often diseases occur in different groups of people and why.)
“We demonstrated that treatment with vitamin A significantly inhibited murine (mouse) norovirus replication. Vitamin A supplementation significantly increased the abundance of Lactobacillus sp. during norovirus infection, which played a crucial role in antiviral efficacy, inhibiting murine norovirus. Therefore, we elaborated the antiviral effect of vitamin A via modulation of gut microbiota. Furthermore, we suggest a novel strategy, using potential probiotics, as having a protective and therapeutic effect on noroviral infection.”
In another study the same scientists concluded “that the abundance of Lactobacillus through gut microbiota modulation by RA is at least partially responsible for norovirus inhibition”.
At this point I will mention that our Lactospore product can maintain an optimal microbiome, helping to increase levels of lactobacillus bacteria in the gut.