Vitamin D Testing Essential In Pandemic Era Says Organic & Natural Health Association

WASHINGTON, April 23, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- While the focus on having sufficient COVID-19 tests completed to determine the magnitude of the pandemic, and an action plan towards recovery is paramount, Organic & Natural Health Association says other testing for key nutrients, such as vitamin D, is just as critical in putting the power of prevention in the hands of the public.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is now tracking underlying health conditions such as diabetes mellitus, chronic lung disease and cardiovascular disease, all of which rank as the top three high-risk diseases associated with increased severity or complications of COVID-19 as compared to persons without these conditions. The CDC shows diabetes, chronic lung and cardiovascular disease as pre-existing conditions that are even more detrimental risk factors than that of current or former smokers.

Karen Howard, CEO and executive director of Organic & Natural Health, says this data underscores the importance of nutrient testing and specifically vitamin D testing, as vitamin D deficiencies have been linked to all three of these top diseases most affected by COVID-19. Currently 40-75% of the world’s population and nearly 90% of all Americans are vitamin D deficient.

“The primary source of vitamin D is sunshine. Absorbing enough vitamin D has always been challenging for Americans who prioritize skin protection over sun exposure, but now with stay-at-home orders, getting the amounts you need is next to impossible,” said Howard. “Vitamin D supplementation is an inexpensive, simple way to resolve deficiencies if taken in the right amounts, which can only be determined through testing.”

According to GrassrootsHealth D*action project, 48 high-profile vitamin D researchers from around the globe agree that 40-60 ng/ml (100-150 nmol/L) is the ideal range for vitamin D that can help reduce disease by 20-50% or more. The appropriate intake depends on the individual’s age, race, lifestyle and latitude of residence. The latest Institute of Medicine report indicates 10,000 IU/day is considered the NOAEL (no observed adverse effect level) and 4,000 IU/day is safe for adults age 19 and older. Howard says once you know your vitamin D level, you can use a vitamin D calculator to estimate how much vitamin D is needed to reach your desired target level.

For the past five years, Organic & Natural Health has partnered and helped fund nutrient research with GrassrootsHealth to determine how specific levels of vitamin D, omega-3 and magnesium can improve health outcomes and have a direct impact on disease prevention. Together with a consortium of scientists, institutions and professionals committed to eradicating worldwide nutrient deficiency, GrassrootsHealth has pioneered nutrient research by using sophisticated field trials based on its successful international home testing program that has enrolled more than 10,000 participants for the past 10 years. The program includes testing of vitamin D, omega-3 and magnesium levels along with educational information for participants on how their nutrient levels compare with others around the world so they can be empowered to improve their personal health. The D*action project serves as a model for public health action on vitamin D and is a vehicle to drive nutrient research to show how it has a direct impact on disease prevention.

“Our ongoing work with GrassrootsHealth is very relevant right now in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Howard. “How each person handles COVID-19 and recovers from it has a direct reflection on their health status from immune system strength to underlying health conditions. Testing our nutrient levels is critical to knowing where we fall along the scale of healthy to compromised, for this pandemic or any health crisis.”

According to published research, vitamin D levels of 50 ng/ml appear to protect against viral respiratory infection. Further, research shows the risk of premature birth decreases by 60% when pregnant women have vitamin D blood serum levels of 40 ng/ml or higher, a level that may be particularly important during COVID-19 with pregnancy ranking 7th in the CDC’s underlying health conditions most at risk for COVID-19.

Organic & Natural Health Association advances research to redefine how health care is delivered and provides quality education to inform and empower conscious consumer choice. Its Nutrient Power consumer education campaign advances nutrient research and educates consumers to take charge of their health, including monitoring your own vitamin D, omega-3 and magnesium levels with a simple home test kit to determine nutrient levels and receive education on how to boost numbers and improve health outcomes. It is recommended to test vitamin D levels every six months and use a vitamin D calculator to reach your desired target level.

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at

Organic & Natural Health