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AU Health studying effectiveness of vitamin intake and COVID-19

Published: Oct. 27, 2020 at 4:58 PM EDT
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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - With COVID-19 cases rising across the nation and record-breaking daily cases in some states, it’s clear coronavirus is not going anywhere anytime soon.

But with a vaccine likely still months away from being approved, what’s the alternative?

We’ve all likely wondered until there’s a vaccine, is there any other way to protect myself from COVID-19? AU Health says a common vitamin and typically controversial drug can help.

Dr. Carlos Isales studies aging, but he found something in common with COVID-19 patients and his usual subjects.

“A number of them presented some signs which were consistent with accelerated aging,” Isales said.

So he and his colleague Dr. Sadanand Fulzele went to work and found just as vitamin C helps with health in old age, it helps with COVID-19.

“Your ability to use the vitamin C by getting inside the cells is decreased,” Isales said. “If they have symptoms, start taking some of those supplements because they could be of benefit in that setting.”

Why? Because vitamin C helps decrease inflammation, which is often caused by COVID-19.

“CBD also has anti-inflammatory properties,” Isales said.

Researchers at AU say lab studies show pure medical CBD can help the lungs recover from COVID-19 and it calms the body’s often overwhelming immune response to the virus.

“Arthritis, joint pain, and in that case it’s used as an oil,” Isales said. “So, I think that probably some internal ingestion of some of these preparations would probably be sufficient.”

But it’s too early to be completely sure. Those findings could be used in AU’s long-term COVID clinic that’s in the works. This happens as researchers try to find a way to heal patients still facing symptoms months later.

“Are there things we can do to prevent them from presenting illness 10 or 20 years down the line?” Isales said.

Before taking any extra vitamins or medication, always talk to your doctor. AU says it’s important to understand doses because too much of anything usually isn’t good.

AU says it’s OK to take higher doses of vitamin C when you’re sick. In fact, President Donald Trump was prescribed vitamin C, vitamin D and zinc for his COVID-19 diagnosis.

There are some foods with high vitamin C such as kiwi, strawberries, bell peppers and broccoli.

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