Immune-boosting role of vitamins D, C, E, zinc, selenium and omega-3 fatty acids: Could they help against COVID-19?

Hira Shakoor, Jack Feehan, Ayesha S. Al Dhaheri, Habiba I. Ali, Carine Platat, Leila Cheikh Ismail, Vasso Apostolopoulos, Lily Stojanovska

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

127 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The world is currently in the grips of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which has mutated to allow human-to-human spread. Infection can cause fever, dry cough, fatigue, severe pneumonia, respiratory distress syndrome and in some instances death. COVID-19 affects the immune system by producing a systemic inflammatory response, or cytokine release syndrome. Patients with COVID-19 have shown a high level of pro-inflammatory cytokines and chemokines. There are currently no effective anti-SARS-CoV-2 viral drugs or vaccines. COVID-19 disproportionately affects the elderly, both directly, and through a number of significant age-related comorbidities. Undoubtedly, nutrition is a key determinant of maintaining good health. Key dietary components such as vitamins C, D, E, zinc, selenium and the omega 3 fatty acids have well-established immunomodulatory effects, with benefits in infectious disease. Some of these nutrients have also been shown to have a potential role in the management of COVID-19. In this paper, evidence surrounding the role of these dietary components in immunity as well as their specific effect in COVID-19 patients are discussed. In addition, how supplementation of these nutrients may be used as therapeutic modalities potentially to decrease the morbidity and mortality rates of patients with COVID-19 is discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalMaturitas
Volume143
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2021

Keywords

  • COVID-19
  • Immunomodulation
  • Omega-3
  • Pandemic
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Selenium
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin D
  • Vitamin E
  • Zinc

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology

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