According to a research, published in the journal BMJ Nutrition Prevention & Health, it hints that taking multivitamins, omega-3, probiotics, or vitamin D supplements may lessen the risk of testing positive for SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible for COVID-19 infection--at least among women.
But taking any of vitamin C, zinc, or garlic supplements wasn't associated with a lower risk of testing positive for the virus, the findings show. There has been plethora of celebrity endorsement of the use of dietary supplements to both ward off and treat COVID-19 infection since the start of the pandemic, note the researchers.
The researchers, including those from King's College London in the UK, drew on adult users of the COVID-19 Symptom Study app to see if regular supplement users were less likely to test positive for SARS-CoV-2. The app was launched in the UK, the US, and Sweden in March 2020 to capture self-reported information on the evolution of the pandemic.
The researchers analyzed information supplied by 372,720 UK subscribers to the app about their regular use of dietary supplements throughout May, June, and July 2020 during the first wave of the pandemic as well as any coronavirus swab test results.
The study found taking probiotics, omega fatty acids, multivitamins, or vitamin D was associated with a lower risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection by 14 percent, 12 percent, 13 percent, and 9 percent, respectively. No such effects were observed among those taking vitamin C, zinc, or garlic supplements, according to the researchers.
When the researchers looked specifically at sex, age, and weight (BMI), the protective associations for probiotics, omega-3 fatty acids, multivitamins, and vitamin D were observed only in women of all ages and weights.