Vitamin D can reduce the risk of viral epidemics and pandemics in several ways. First, higher 25(OH)D concentrations reduce the risk of many chronic diseases, including cancers, cardiovascular disease, chronic respiratory tract infections (RTIs), diabetes mellitus, and hypertension. Patients with chronic diseases have significantly higher risk of death from RTIs than otherwise healthy people
Second, vitamin D reduces risk of RTIs through three mechanisms: maintaining tight junctions, killing enveloped viruses through induction of cathelicidin and defensins, and reducing production of proinflammatory cytokines by the innate immune system, thereby reducing the risk of a cytokine storm leading to pneumonia
Scientific Research On Vitamin D and Viral Infection
Observational and supplementation trials have reported higher 25(OH)D concentrations associated with reduced risk of dengue, hepatitis, herpesvirus, hepatitis B and C viruses, human immunodeficiency virus, influenza, respiratory syncytial virus infections, and pneumonia
How Much Do I Need?
Results of a community field trial linked below indicated that 25(OH)D concentrations above 50 ng/ml (125 nmol/l) vs. <20 ng/ml were associated with a 27% reduction in influenza-like illnesses. From the available evidence, researchers hypothesize that raising serum 25(OH)D concentrations through vitamin D supplementation could reduce the incidence, severity, and risk of death from influenza, pneumonia, and the current COVID-19 epidemic.