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15 Oct

IV Vitamins to boost the immune system against COVID-19

Boosting the immune system with IV Vitamins

A balanced diet that can help maintain or enhance immunity is essential for the prevention and management of viral infections. Among vitamins, A, C, and D showed a potential benefit, particularly in deficient populations, and a favorable immune enhancement effect in viral respiratory infections. Several vitamins may have a role to play in enhancing immune functions. In the current review, we summarize the potential benefits of IV vitamins that boost the immune system against COVID-19 and the nutritional principles of vitamins that could be useful in the possible prevention and management of COVID-19. Vitamins containing micronutrients and vitamins C and D are a safe, low-cost and effective way to help the immune system combat COVID-19 other acute respiratory diseases. Vitamins A to E highlighted potentially beneficial roles in the fight against COVID-19 through antioxidant effects, immunomodulation, enhancement of natural barriers, and local paracrine signaling. Evidence supports the use of thiamine, vitamin C, and vitamin D in respiratory diseases like COVID, ARDS, and sepsis.

Immunomodulatory role of Vitamins

Currently, there are no approved treatments for COVID-19, but prevention strategies such as social distancing, public hygiene, and wearing facial masks are the best current approaches to reducing COVID-19. Recent evidence has shown that IV administration of vitamins can play a supportive role in COVID-19 patients. Administration of higher than recommended daily doses of nutrients such as vitamins D, C, E, Zinc and omega-3 fatty acids may have a beneficial effect, potentially reducing SARS-CoV-2 viral load and duration of hospitalization. These nutrients are well known for their antioxidant and immunomodulatory properties. Deficiencies in these nutrients can lead to immune dysfunction and increase susceptibility to pathological infection. Dietary insufficiency of vitamins and minerals has been observed in high-risk groups of COVID-19 patients, such as the elderly, increasing morbidity and risk of death. It is well known that elderly people are more likely to be nutrient deficient and to have compromised immunity through immuno-sensitivity, significantly increase their risk of poor COVID-19 outcomes, and double the importance of adequate nutrition.

Role of Vitamin A

Vitamin A acts as a key factor in the fight against viral diseases, including COVID-19, which plays a key role in the modulation of the immune system. Vitamin A has been found not only to promote the spread of T-lymphocytes (through increased IL-2) but also to promote their differentiation, particularly in regulatory T cells. This has been Interestingly been used as an adjunct to vaccine use in infants to improve antibody response. Antioxidant and surfactant-mediating properties of vitamin A derivatives may play a protective role in the pathogenesis of ARDS, a known complication of serious cases of COVID-19. Vitamin A is known to play a beneficial role in respiratory infections, again leading to speculation about the potential role of protection in COVID-19.

Role of vitamin C

Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, is making headlines in the fight against COVID-19. It is suggested that intravenous vitamin C may help people with this disease. Vitamin C is delivered directly into the bloodstream through a vein, usually in the arm. There are several theories about how IV vitamin C can help with the treatment of COVID-19. Very high levels of vitamin C can lead to free radicals that destroy viruses and bacteria. The cells of our body have defenses against these free radicals, but the viruses do not. Another possibility is IV vitamin C, which renews the body’s antioxidant protection. Serious infections can use vitamin C and other antioxidants in our body very quickly. Its function is to support respiratory defense mechanisms, prevent viral infections, and reduce their duration and severity, as well as to have anti-histamine properties that can improve flu-like symptoms. Interestingly, patients with acute respiratory infections such as pneumonia or tuberculosis have decreased plasma vitamin C concentrations and vitamin C administration has reduced the severity and duration of pneumonia in elderly patients.


Role of Vitamin D

Vitamin D in its natural form, cholecalciferol, is obtained from dietary sources, such as oily fish and egg yolks, but is also produced by de novo synthesis in the basal and stratum spinosum stratum of the epidermis using dehydrocholesterol in the presence of ultraviolet B ( UVB) radiation. Cholecalciferol is then hydroxylated into its biologically active forms 25-hydroxyvitamin D (calcifediol) and 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D (calcitriol).

IV administration of Vitamin D helps to mediate immune system responses to infectious agents through enhanced Treg and Th2 cell function, attenuating the cytokine storm that is thought to be a key pathogenic mechanism in ARDS. Other speculated roles include protection against lung injury by modulating the renin-angiotensin pulmonary system and reducing viral entry and replication. Vitamin D supplements are known to help reduce the incidence and severity of viral infection and supplementation that could potentially reduce pro-inflammatory cytokines and, subsequently, reduce acute respiratory distress syndrome-associated mortality in COVID-19 patients.

Role of vitamin E

Vitamin E has been shown to enhance the immune response in both animal and human models through the following mechanisms: decreased production of nitrogen oxide resulting in prostaglandin E2 downregulation and inhibition of cyclooxygenase-2, initiation of T-lymphocyte signals, and modulation of the Th1 / Th2 balance.

Vitamin E is a major antioxidant defense component. Vitamin E acts through antioxidant pathways to increase the number of T cells, enhance mitogenic lymphocyte reactions, increase the secretion of IL-2 cytokines, enhance NK cell activity, and reduce the risk of infection. The IV administration of vitamin E has also shown an increase in resistance to respiratory infections. Despite these beneficial roles in immunity, limited information exists on the effects of vitamin E on humans with COVID-19 infection, although patients are encouraged to have adequate intakes of these antioxidant nutrients.


In the absence of a vaccine, the world is eagerly awaiting treatment options for COVID-19. In this article, we critically assessed the potential immunomodulatory, antioxidant and antimicrobial roles of vitamins A, C, D, E. All of the vitamins mentioned have a viable role to play in supporting COVID-19 patients. IV administration of higher doses of vitamins D, C and may have a positive effect during infection with COVID-19. Although there is currently no evidence from completed randomized controlled trials to show definitively and specifically the role of vitamin supplementation in the fight against COVID-19, there is strong scientific evidence, based on studies of vitamin physiology, pharmacology, and their role in clinical studies of infection and ARDS, to indicate the role of vitamins in the fight against this disease.

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Thomas H Jovic, Stephen R Ali, Nader Ibrahim, Zita M Jessop Published: 23 August 2020 “Could Vitamins Help in the Fight Against COVID-19?’’ Nutrients, Volume12, Issue 9


Jack Feehan, Ayesha S. Al Dhaheri, Crine Platat, Hira Shakoor Published: 9 Aug 2020 “Immune-boosting role of vitamins D, C, E, zinc, selenium and omega-3 fatty acids: Could they help against COVID-19?” Elsevier Public Health Emergency  Collection  doi: 10.1016/j.maturitas.2020.08.003