Some of you are probably a bit board with my recent month’s long series of posts. So, to change it up I will do a short one. The issue is there is only so much of what are often complex subjects into a short post. Also, I don’t like to waste time by being redundant and recovering the same subjects. 

Ok the Wuhan coronavirus. I never trust the news as their job is to sensationalize so we will spend more time paying attention to them. As has been brought up more in recent years is the 1918-19 Spanish flu epidemic which all but a few weren’t born to experience. 

As one of my favorite phrases goes “those who don’t remember history are doomed to repeat it”. So, do we have a repeat of the Spanish flu? Which infected an estimated billion people and killed an estimated one hundred million? I would like to think not. 

However, I read an excellent but speculative article which theorizes that the Wuhan virus is more infective than the influenza virus and equally or more infective as the Spanish flu virus. 1 To calculate how infective a virus is they determine how many additional susceptible people are infected by an infected individual during their infectious period. 

For example, with say a population vaccinated for mumps they would only count the nonvaccinated people who became infected by an infected individual. They use a RO number to categorize this infective rate. The higher the RO the more infective is the virus. 

Take the common influenza which we deal with each year has a RO between 0.9-1.8. The Spanish flu RO was 1.4-2.8 and it is estimated by one English research group that the RO of this coronavirus may be much higher at 3.8. 2 Which is not good. 

As every media outlet is quick to point out the Chinese government are not good at responding to these sorts of crisis. Take the 2003 severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) viral outbreak in China for example killed about 9% of those infected. 3 It too was a coronavirus. Luckily it fizzles out on its own. 

Now you may think the “experts” can quickly whip up an effective vaccine. Wrong as they still don’t have a vaccine for the SARS virus. Take this year’s influenza virus. The experts are excited as it may exceed 50% effectiveness. Not an overwhelming success in my opinion. 

As I blogged about before the reason for low success rate is due to so many different strains of that virus. Now the Wuhan virus like the SARS is so far to my knowledge only one strain. The good thing is our current healthcare and public health services are so much better.

Better than they were in during the period of the Spanish flu. Also, the Chinese government appears to be taking this viral outbreak more seriously. It has been reported for one that they are building two new hospitals in a matter of weeks to house those who are ill from this current coronavirus outbreak.

That is all great but it also tells me that there are going to be a lot of very ill people. The same article I referenced above states that 25% of those people infected are seriously ill. 4 Not a good sign if true. So why am I writing this? The reason is to stress how important having optimal blood levels of vitamin D3 are. 

As only a small percentage (10-15%) of the cases of those with “flu” symptoms tested positive for the influenza virus. 5,6 The other viruses that cause “flu” like symptoms are a hodgepodge of over 100 different ones such as rhinovirus, coronavirus and respiratory syncytial virus. 7,8

The point being it is difficult to tell what is infecting you without testing. Though these other viral infections are not as dangerous as is influenza initially. The problem is you don’t or can’t tell the difference between these viral infections based solely on the symptoms.

My question is why would you want to suffer from them? Or for that matter risk catching the Wuhan rotavirus? In my experience those who took optimal doses of vitamin D3 and the other supplements particularly magnesium as I discussed in earlier blog posts simply didn’t suffer from the “flu”. 

Can I promise optimal doses will protect you from the Wuhan coronavirus or even this year’s influenza virus? No! What I can promise is it will typically significantly boost your immune system function. Which will give you a fighting chance. 

Especially if your older or younger. Typically, these being the age groups with the weakest immune systems and those with low vitamin D3 blood levels. Thus those most susceptible to these types of infections. Though almost all can benefit from vitamin D3 as so many people are vitamin D3 deficient. 

  2. Reed JM, Bridgen JRE, Cummings DAT, et al. Novel coronavirus 2019-nCoV: early estimation of epidemiological parameters and epidemic predictions.
  3. Serensen MD, Serensen B., Gonzales-Dosal R, et al. “Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS): development of diagnostic and antivirals”. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences. 2006 (1): 500-5.
  4. Ibid (1)
  5. Rajnik M, Murray C, Hospenthal DR. Rhinoviruses. http// [Accessed December 27, 2006] 
  6. Beers MH, Porter RS, Jones TV, et al. eds. The Common Cold (Upper Respiratory Infection). The Merck Manuals Online Medical Library. Whitehouse Station, NJ: Merck Research Laboratories; http:// ?qt=common%20cold&alt=sh [Accessed December 27 2006]
  7. Roxas M, Jurenka J. Colds and influenza” a review of diagnostic and conventional, botanical ans nutritional considerations. Altern Med Rev. 2007; 12(1):25-48.
  8. Durand M, Joseph M. Infections of the upper respiratory tract. In: Braunwald E, Fauci S, Kasper DL, et al. eds. Harrisons Principles of Internal Medicine. 15th. Ed. New York, NY. McGraw-Hill. 2001:187-193. 


*The information posted above is for educational purposes only. Always check with your doctor before initiating any changes in your medical treatment. If you do not, then The Two-Minute Health Fact, Dr. Judson Somerville, nor The Optimal Dose is responsible!


Jeff · April 26, 2020 at 11:59 am

This Philippines doctor gathered Vitamin-D levels from 212 laboratory-confirmed infections of SARS-CoV-2 across three hospitals in Southern Asian countries. Showing 19 times greater risk of having critical case with very low Vitamin-D levels.

Vitamin D Supplementation Could Possibly Improve Clinical Outcomes of Patients Infected with Coronavirus-2019 (COVID-2019)
212 (100.0%) cases of Covid-2019
Mean Vitamin-D serum levels
49 (23.1%) were mild = 31.2 ng/ml
59 (27.8%) were ordinary = 27.4 ng/ml
56 (26.4%) were severe = 21.2 ng/ml
48 (22.6%) were critical = 17.1 ng/ml

Jeff Sibley · May 3, 2020 at 2:24 am

Doctor Somerville,

I have just read your wonderful book. Thank you for giving me some new ideas to work on.
I am currently using the “Root Cause Protocol” nutrient suggestions by Morley Robbins. Mr Robbins says that you should get Vitamin D from the sun and Cod Liver Oil only, not from synthetic D. He says that synthetic D harms Ceruloplasium production.
Staying with Mr Robbins program means that I will never be able to get to the 100 to 140 vitamin D blood levels you recommend. Do you have any suggestions?

Thank You

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