RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN)- Using research and data from COVID-19 patients, Health Test Centers put together a list of six deficiencies that could put people at risk for serious complications from COVID-19.
Those six were narrowed down to:
- Vitamin D level
- Blood sugar levels
- Inflammation levels
- Zinc levels
- Iron levels
- Genetic predisposition
Keith Kloss, founder and CEO for Health Test Centers said these all issues people can do something about.
“We’re in a time where people, including myself are concerned about ‘Hey, what can you do other than stay home and wear your mask?- which I encourage everyone to do,” said Kloss.
He said the items they’ve identified can be addressed through testing or vitamins and supplements.
“Taking a supplement like a Vitamin D, or increasing your iron levels or really having a supply of zinc on hand, those are things that can empower you to feel like you have some sort of control in these crazy times,” said Kloss.
Vitamin D deficiencies
A study out of Northwestern University, found COVID-19 patients with severe Vitamin D deficiencies were twice as likely to have major complications from the virus. They found this to be true when examining the same groups.
Those with Vitamin D deficiencies were found to have a harder time counteracting the virus. The table below from Mayo Clinic and StatPearls showed hospitalized adult patients, nursing home residents, and women over the age of 80 were most likely to have lower than recommended levels of Vitamin D.
High blood sugar
Findings published in Diabetologia concluded patients with COVID-19 but without a previous diagnosis of diabetes had “abnormally high blood sugar is associated with more than double the risk of death and also an increased risk of severe complications.’ It’s why Kloss said high blood sugar is an indicator of a potential serious risk from COVID-19.
The Diabetologia published study found high blood sugar was found in more than 30 percent of COVID-19 related deaths. Just over 10 percent of patients where found to have normal blood sugar levels.
According to Health Testing Center’s report, “Sugar in the blood acts as an immunosuppressant, potentially crippling the immune system’s ability to subdue the viral threat when COVID-19 enters the body.”
Health Testing Center said inflammation in the body has been linked to cancer, autoimmune disease and heart disease. They said uncontrolled inflammation can get in the way of the body’s response to illnesses like COVID-19. That in turn can cause a “cytokine storm”- an overreaction of the body’s immune system to the virus. “This is what seems to kill a majority of COVID-19 patients, not the destruction of the lungs by the virus itself. It is the complications from the misdirected fire from the immune system,” said Ali Daneshkhah, a postdoctoral research associate and author of the Northwestern University study on Vitamin D.
Health Testing Centers said proper levels of zinc can help build up your body’s first line of defense. They said can halt the spread of a virus through the body. Lower levels of the mineral in the body may hinder your body’s ability to fight COVID-19.
According to the Serum Iron Level as a Potential Predictor of Coronavirus Disease 2019 Severity and Mortality: A Retrospective Study, “Severity and mortality of the disease was closely correlated with serum iron levels.” This study along with others is why Health Testing Centers concluded iron levels that are too high or too low is a COVID-19 risk factors.
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