Cohort study to evaluate the effect of vitamin D, magnesium, and vitamin B12 in combination on progression to severe outcomes in older patients with coronavirus (COVID-19)

Nutrition. 2020 Nov-Dec:79-80:111017. doi: 10.1016/j.nut.2020.111017. Epub 2020 Sep 8.


Objectives: The aim of this study was to determine clinical outcomes of older patients with coronavirus (COVID-19) who received a combination of vitamin D, magnesium, and vitamin B12 (DMB) compared with those who did not. We hypothesized that fewer patients administered this combination would require oxygen therapy, intensive care support, or a combination of both than those who did not.

Methods: This was a cohort observational study of all consecutive hospitalized patients ≥50 y of age with COVID-19 in a tertiary academic hospital. Before April 6, 2020, no patients received the (DMB) combination. After this date, patients were administered 1000 IU/d oral vitamin D3, 150 mg/d oral magnesium, and 500 mcg/d oral vitamin B12 upon admission if they did not require oxygen therapy. Primary outcome was deterioration leading to any form of oxygen therapy, intensive care support, or both.

Results: Between January 15 and April 15, 2020, we identified 43 consecutive patients ≥50 y of age with COVID-19. Seventeen patients received DMB before onset of primary outcome and 26 patients did not. Baseline demographic characteristics between the two groups were significantly different by age. In univariate analysis, age and hypertension had a significant influence on outcome. After adjusting for age or hypertension separately in a multivariate analysis, the intervention group retained protective significance. Fewer treated patients than controls required initiation of oxygen therapy during hospitalization (17.6 vs 61.5%, P = 0.006). DMB exposure was associated with odds ratios of 0.13 (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.03-0.59) and 0.20 (95% CI, 0.04-0.93) for oxygen therapy, intensive care support, or both on univariate and multivariate analyses, respectively.

Conclusions: A vitamin D / magnesium / vitamin B12 combination in older COVID-19 patients was associated with a significant reduction in the proportion of patients with clinical deterioration requiring oxygen support, intensive care support, or both. This study supports further larger randomized controlled trials to ascertain the full benefit of this combination in ameliorating the severity of COVID-19.

Keywords: Magnesium; Vitamin B(12)COVID-19; Vitamin D.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Observational Study

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • COVID-19 / therapy
  • COVID-19 Drug Treatment*
  • Cohort Studies
  • Critical Care*
  • Disease Progression
  • Female
  • Hospitalization
  • Humans
  • Magnesium / therapeutic use*
  • Male
  • Micronutrients / therapeutic use*
  • Middle Aged
  • Minerals / therapeutic use
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Oxygen Inhalation Therapy*
  • Pandemics
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Vitamin B 12 / therapeutic use*
  • Vitamin D / therapeutic use*
  • Vitamins / therapeutic use


  • Micronutrients
  • Minerals
  • Vitamins
  • Vitamin D
  • Magnesium
  • Vitamin B 12