OU Medical expert discusses boosting immunity during COVID-19 pandemic

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OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – During the COVID-19 pandemic, social distancing has been a big talking point for prevention, but there are other ways you can help yourself, like boosting your immune system.

While working to boost your immunity, could a step for protecting yourself against COVID-19 be in a bottle of vitamins?

“I never question a patient if they say they want to take a multivitamin because we both know that the American diet sometimes isn’t as nutritious as it should be,” said Dr. Dale Bratzler, the enterprise chief quality officer at OU Medicine. 

Bratzler is constantly studying the ever-developing COVID-19 research.

He says while like with any other illness, proper diet, sleep exercise, minimizing stress and limiting the use of alchol can boost your immune system against coronavirus.

However, low vitamin D levels have been linked to increased severity of COVID-19.

“We know that people that are deficient in Vitamin D do have some problems with their immune system,” Bratzler said. 

The only way to know if you’re deficient is through a blood test.

If you are, you can take supplements, get vitamin D replacement therapy or simply just get out and enjoy the sun.

Bratzler says while we know people with preexisting conditions are more at risk for having a severe case of COVID-19, an enhanced immune response can make it worse as well.

“They get these inflammatory proteins that flood the system out of their immune system that cause lung problems, blood clots, heart disease and other things,” he said. 

Bratzler encourages people to still practice social distancing and wear your mask when possible.

“Wearing a mask is a sign of courtesy around you,” he said. 

Bratzler says there’s been discussions about encouraging the use of masks during flu season to help reduce the spread of that as well.

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