Researchers studying sun and COVID-19

Sunlight and vitamin D may have a positive effect on coronavirus-afflicted


Photo: Gerd Altmann / Pixabay

Translated by Andy Meyer

Norwegian researchers are studying whether tanning could be effective against coronavirus. “It could indicate whether vitamin D offers some protection,” said the lead researcher.

Over 140,000 Norwegians are involved in the sizeable study. In three phases, participants have answered questions about themselves, their lives, and COVID-19. In the last round, there are more questions about their tanning habits, wrote NRK.

“We are wondering if there is something positive connected to tanning, and it would be very nice if we found out something that was useful for society. Something we could use in the struggle against the virus,” said researcher and doctor Arne Søraas, who leads the study at Oslo University Hospital.

Researchers throughout the world have speculated about whether vitamin D is especially beneficial in light of the pandemic. Some wonder if there is something unique about the substance we get when the ultraviolet light from the sun meets the skin.

“Data can show whether vitamin D offers some protection against serious cases of COVID-19,” Søraas said.

There has been relatively little research published about vitamin D in connection with the virus. Some studies have found no connection. Other studies suggest that there might be a very clear connection.

A group of Chinese researchers conducted a yet-unpublished study in June that concluded that vitamin D reduces the quantity of the virus in infected cells from humans.

This article originally appeared in the July 31, 2020, issue of The Norwegian American.

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The Norwegian American

The Norwegian American is North America's oldest and only Norwegian newspaper, published since May 17, 1889.