In the United States, there are approximately 102,544,598 cases of COVID-19 and about 1,114,970 deaths.
A study published in JAMA Network Open in October 2022 showed that long COVID is quite common in women, especially those of older age.
In order to find relief from long COVID, many people have been desperately seeking alternative options to alleviate the symptoms and help their immune system recover from the disease. This has led many people to search supplements that can help them manage their post-COVID symptoms.
What is long-COVID?
Long-COVID is a syndrome that affects many individuals infected with SARS-CoV-2. The symptoms linger from months to years after recovering from the disease.
“Symptoms can be lung, neurological, or stomach-related. Common symptoms include fatigue, worsening quality of life, dyspnea, joint pain, diarrhea, skin rash, anxiety, sleep issues, and headache.”, according to Maher Chaar, PharmD, CPh, BCMTMS, pharmacist, and board-certified medication therapy management specialist.
How can supplements help those with long-COVID?
Some supplements can strengthen the immune system and general health. However, supplements should not substitute professional medical care or preventative measures like vaccinations and face mask use.
Here is a list of supplements that may alleviate symptoms of long-COVID, according to Alan Miller, N.D., the Vice President, Scientific and Regulatory Affairs of CELLg8.
Vitamin D: Vitamin D plays a key role in immunity, and low blood levels of vitamin D are linked to increased severity of COVID-19 outcomes. A supplement of at least 5000 IU (125 mcg) daily is recommended to correct a deficiency and have a more favorable outcome.
Zinc: Some studies suggest that zinc supplements may help reduce the severity and duration of respiratory infections. Zinc is another mineral that plays a key role in immunity modulation.
Omega-3 fatty acids: Omega-3 fatty acids are essential fatty acids that play a role in inflammation and immunity. Some studies suggest that Omega-3 supplements may help improve symptoms in people with long-COVID.
Glutathione and N-acetylcysteine (NAC): Glutathione is one of the most researched nutrients associated with COVID. Some research demonstrates a correlation between low glutathione levels and the severity of the disease. Glutathione or its precursor NAC is recommended.
Vitamin C: Vitamin C is an important antioxidant that helps protect cells from the damage caused by free radicals. Some experts recommend high-dose vitamin C intravenously to reduce oxidative stress.
Probiotics: Probiotics contain beneficial bacteria which can help improve gut health. An imbalance of bacteria in the gut may be associated with long-COVID, so probiotics may help improve both the digestion and cognitive symptoms.
Curcumin: The orange-pigmented Curcumin, extracted from turmeric root, has powerful anti-inflammatory effects. Chronic inflammation has been associated with long-COVID infections.
There is not one single vitamin or supplement that can cure long-COVID, but they can ease the symptoms.
The three pillars of a healthy immune system are a balanced diet, regular exercise, and enough sleep. Supplements may also prove beneficial.