Dr. Leslie Ray Matthews is a Professor of Surgery, and the Director of Surgical Critical Care at Morehouse School of Medicine in Atlanta, GA. Dr. Matthews is Known as one of the “Top Vitamin D experts in the world,” Focusing his career on the study of Vitamin D deficiency in surgical intensive care patients, where he has been investigating the positive effect of Vitamin D therapy on critically ill patients.
Enjoy the interview
Veronica Charnell: What is Vitamin D Therapy?
Dr. Matthews: Vitamin D3 is the most common nutritional deficiency in the world. Up to half of the world, the population is deficient in vitamin D3. This makes vitamin D3 a pandemic that is just as important as the coronavirus pandemic. Vitamin D3 therapy is supplementing or replacing the deficient vitamin D3 in people to optimal levels. Vitamin D3 can be replaced by: getting adequate sunlight; eating foods fortified with vitamin D3 such as fatty fish; supplementing with vitamin D3 liquids, capsules, soft gels, or sublingual sprays.
Veronica Charnell: Is Vitamin D truly considered to be a hormone?
Dr. Matthews: Vitamin D3 is a true steroid hormone that controls 3,000 out of 30,000 genes in the human body. It is an anti-stress hormone that controls ten percent of the human body’s DNA or genes. Genes controlled by vitamin D3 include the immune response system which makes white blood cells. White blood cells fight bacterial, viral, fungal, parasitic infections, and cancer cells. Vitamin D3 also controls the inflammatory response system. This system regulates inflammation and the “cytokine storm” cascade is seen in very ill coronavirus patients. Inflammation causes fever, congestion in the lungs, and end-organ damage.
Veronica Charnell: For years Vitamin C is considered to be number one in boosting the immune system. Why do you favor Vitamin D over Vitamin C?
Dr. Matthews: Vitamin C is a true vitamin that is water-soluble and has limited capabilities compared to vitamin D3. Vitamin C does not regulate genes like vitamin D3 nor controls the entire immune response system. Vitamin D3 is required for optimal health. Plus, it is the most common nutritional deficiency in the world.
Veronica Charnell: If someone has a deficiency in Vitamin D, how can it negatively impact this person on a daily basis?
Dr. Matthews: Vitamin D3 deficiency can impact almost all aspects of health since it controls 3,000 out of 30,000 human genes. Some of the symptoms of vitamin D3 deficiency include: brain fog, lack of focus, decreased attention span, lethargy, lack of energy, bone pain, joint pain, insomnia, depression, hair loss, brittle nails, muscle weakness, and frequent upper respiratory tract infections.
Veronica Charnell: People are realizing how important it is to maintain a healthy lifestyle. What are some healthy activities we can do while maintaining Social Distancing?
Dr. Matthews: There are many things that you can do to maintain a healthy lifestyle. First, eating healthy meals, limiting excess carbohydrates, and maintaining a healthy weight. Next, stay well hydrated by drinking an adequate amount of water. Get proper sleep and rest. Pay close attention to your mental health and seek professional help when needed. Wash your hands after using the restroom, wear a mask when you are out in public, avoid large crowds, and practice safe social distancing.
Veronica Charnell: Can Vitamin D strengthen the immune system to fight against Covid-19?
Dr. Matthews: Yes, Vitamin D3 is very important for optimal immune health. Vitamin D3 works by making the immune system stronger to fight off any type of infection whether it is viral, bacterial, fungal, or parasitic. Unlike the mRNA vaccines, the coronavirus can’t develop resistance to vitamin D3. Vitamin D3 uses a different mechanism of action to destroy the coronavirus. While the mRNA vaccines produce antibodies against the spike protein, vitamin D3 drills a hole in the lipid envelope layer that surrounds the coronavirus. Vitamin D3 then enters the coronavirus shell and directly inactivates the coronavirus RNA.
Veronica Charnell: What are some Dietary requirements to achieve and maintain health and wellness?
Dr. Matthews: The FDA produces the RDA which is a chart that tells you how many dietary requirements are needed to maintain health and wellness.
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