Public Health England (PHE) has released new advice, urging the nation to supplement vitamin D daily, for the duration of the ‘stay home’ period.
As part of the government response to the COVID-19 pandemic, PHE has issued guidance and information on vitamin D, taking into account many Britons’ new indoor lifestyles during the nationwide lockdown. What’s so essential about Vitamin D you might be wondering?
According to PHE, with most of us spending our time indoors, one thing we are not getting enough of is sunlight. Direct sunlight on the skin helps us to produce vitamin D, which helps us to maintain muscle, teeth and bone health. The best rule of thumb while staying indoors is to consider taking a daily supplement containing 10micrograms of vitamin D. Everyone is urged to follow this advice – not just those at-risk of deficiency – including children, pregnant and breastfeeding women and older people.
The announcement comes following an increase in clinical trials and research papers surrounding vitamin D and its potential ability to; aid in the fight against respiratory infections, support the immune system and even treat mild symptoms of COVID-19.
Vitamin D and respiratory infections:
A recent report from researchers at The Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (TILDA) at Trinity College, Dublin, indicates that vitamin D plays a crucial role in preventing respiratory infections, reducing antibiotic use and improving immune system response.
The findings come at a time when cases of coronavirus continue to surge across the globe, and otherwise young, fit and healthy people are being taken seriously ill.
Published by the Irish Medical Journal, the report; ‘Vitamin D deficiency in Ireland – implications for COVID-19’ explored the optimisation of vitamin D for enhanced immune-protection. Amongst other key findings, it was concluded that vitamin D deficiency is common in Ireland and may contribute to increased risk of respiratory infection.
Vitamin D oral sprays have proven to elevate levels:
A study conducted by Sheffield University, in conjunction with BetterYou, the pioneering brand behind the UK’s first vitamin D oral spray range, found oral sprays to be just as effective at elevating levels as traditional capsules.
Published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition in 2019, the study also identified a higher rate of change to vitamin D status within the deficient and insufficient groups, with the greatest change observed in people with the lowest baseline vitamin D.
Of those presenting lower baseline levels of vitamin D, levels were deemed to be replete after just 21 days of supplementation using BetterYou’s DLux 3000 Vitamin D Oral Spray.
For many people, such as those with dysphagia, using traditional methods of supplementation can be challenging – particularly children and older adults who may struggle to swallow tablets or capsules.
This is also essential for those that have conditions such as IBS, Crohn’s, Colitis and coeliac disease, as the number of nutrients the body can absorb through the gut may be suboptimal. An oral spray delivers nutrients to the bloodstream via the buccal membrane of the inner cheek, offering an effective, pill-free alternative.
Top tips for supporting immunity with vitamin D:
- Where possible, your once-a-day outdoor visit should be done in the middle portion of the day, bearing uncovered skin such as the arms or legs for around 20 minutes.
- Don’t let a vitamin D deficiency add to your worries during this time. If you think you may be deficient, you can test your levels easily by purchasing an at-home kit online. Once your results are determined, you can begin supplementing according to your own personal needs.
- Consider taking a vitamin D supplement all year round, whilst also eating a balanced diet that includes oily fish, eggs and fortified cereals.
For more on Vitamin D from the experts, visit www.betteryou.com/health-hub.
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