Suboptimal Consumption of Relevant Immune System Micronutrients Is Associated with a Worse Impact of COVID-19 in Spanish Populations
Galmés et al.
, Suboptimal Consumption of Relevant Immune System Micronutrients Is Associated with a Worse Impact of COVID-19..
, Nutrients, doi:10.3390/nu14112254
Ecological study in Spain, showing lower intake of vitamin D, A, B9, and zinc in regions with the highest COVID-19 incidence and mortality.
Vitamin D intake was associated with lower prevalence, incidence, and a combined incidence+mortality index. Vitamin A intake was correlated with lower incidence, ∆incidence, and combined incidence+mortality, while not reaching statistical significance (p
= 0.09, 0.07, 0.06). Vitamin B9, B12, and zinc were associated with lower ∆incidence.
Authors analyze 10 vitamins and minerals endorsed by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) as having sufficient evidence for a causal relationship between intake and optimal immune system function: vitamins D, A, C, B6, B9, B12, zinc, copper, iron, and selenium.
The intake of all 10 showed an inverse correlation with ∆incidence and combined incidence+mortality (statistically significant only as shown).
Galmés et al., 27 May 2022, Spain, peer-reviewed, 3 authors.
Suboptimal Consumption of Relevant Immune System
Micronutrients Is Associated with a Worse Impact of
COVID‐19 in Spanish Populations
Sebastià Galmés 1,2,3,*, Andreu Palou 1,2,3 and Francisca Serra 1,2,3,4
Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Nutrition and Biotechnology (Nutrigenomics, Biomarkers and Risk
Evaluation–NuBE), University of the Balearic Islands, 07122 Palma, Spain; firstname.lastname@example.org (A.P.);
2 Centro de Investigación Biomédica en Red de Fisiopatología de la Obesidad y Nutrición, Instituto de Salud
Carlos III, 28029 Madrid, Spain
3 Health Research Institute of the Balearic Islands (IdISBa), 07120 Palma, Spain
4 Alimentómica S.L., Spin‐off n.1 of the University of the Balearic Islands, 07121 Palma, Spain
* Correspondence: email@example.com; Tel.: +34‐971‐259‐727
Citation: Galmés, S.; Palou, A.;
Serra, F. Suboptimal Consumption
of Relevant Immune System
Micronutrients is Associated with a
Worse Impact of COVID‐19 in
Spanish Populations. Nutrients 2022,
14, 2254. https://doi.org/10.3390/
Abstract: Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID‐19) has caused a global health crisis and the factors
behind its differential impact on COVID‐19 among populations are still being known. Geographical
differences in nutrient profile could be a relevant factor, especially considering that scientific evi‐
dence supports that 10 micronutrients are essential for proper immune system function. This study
aims to evaluate these micronutrient intakes in the territories of Spain and to analyze their relation‐
ship with epidemiological indicators of COVID‐19 from the first two waves of COVID‐19, when
neither specific vaccines nor drugs had yet come into play. Results showed that vitamin D, A, B9,
and zinc intakes were particularly insufficient in Spain. The joint intake of these four micronutrients
was lower in regions with the highest COVID‐19 incidence and mortality, and of particular im‐
portance, was the insufficient intake of vitamin D. A pattern of food consumption associated with
lower COVID‐19 impact was observed. In conclusion, the results show the relevance of the optimal
consumption of foods rich in essential nutrients for the immune system. Therefore, this assessment
could serve to launch specific dietary recommendations to strengthen the immune system in Span‐
ish territories to better face potential new COVID‐19 variants and/or further infectious diseases.
Keywords: nutrition; micronutrients; vitamin D; COVID‐19; public health; epidemiology
Academic Editor: Dina Bellizzi
Received: 27 April 2022
Accepted: 26 May 2022
Published: 27 May 2022
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