Vitamin D and Cancer Prevention


Recent studies show strong evidence of Vitamin D’s cancer prevention properties. These new findings have increased the possibilities of finding a cure or ways to prevent cancer. A deadly disease which has been the bane of the modern society, cancer is caused by uncontrolled growth and division of a group of cells. These genetically abnormal cells divide rapidly and spread into adjacent healthy tissues forming malignant tumors. This invasion is followed by metastasis, the breaking away of the cancer cells from the tumor and their spread by blood or lymph to different areas, which results in the spread of the disease through your body.

Through decades, research has been carried out by scientists worldwide to find a cure or ways to prevent this disease. A major breakthrough came recently with scientific studies giving strong indications of the Vitamin D cancer link. Vitamin D is a type of rare vitamin present in foods such as fish rich in fatty oils like salmon, tuna, mackerel, cod liver oil, egg yolk, meat, and mushroom. Even cereals and milks are fortified with Vitamin D. But the biggest source of Vitamin D is the Sun. Our skin has the capacity to naturally produce Vitamin D from exposure to the Sun.

Role of Vitamin D

vitamin d cancer happy jumping women 150x150 Vitamin D and Cancer PreventionVitamin D not only strengthens our immune system , but it also keeps cardiovascular diseases at bay and improves our general health, reducing mortality rate. Vitamin D helps in the absorption of calcium and its role in strengthening the bones, which in turn prevents degenerative diseases like osteoporosis. It also acts as a mood lifter reducing depression. A recent study has shown that Vitamin D has influence over more than 200 genes including the ones responsible for multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, type I diabetes and cancer.

Research has shown that lack of sunlight leads to cancer. People living in colder climates and having limited exposure to sunlight have been more prone to cancer. Although sunlight was associated with cancer a long time ago, only recent studies have brought to light the fact that it is actually the deficiency of Vitamin D which causes cancer. This breakthrough in science has shown that nearly 17 types of cancer can result from a vitamin D deficiency.

Breast Cancer

Breast cancer originates in the breast tissue in the milk ducts or the lobules of the ducts, it is one of the most common forms of cancer to affect women. The factors which can lead to breast cancer include age, race, menarche, childbirth, menopause, and alcohol consumption. Recent studies of breast cancer have also shown Vitamin D’s cancer prevention qualities. In case of elderly women, this becomes more important because with age, Vitamin D deficiency symptoms increase and puts older women at a higher risk of suffering from breast cancer. With age, Vitamin D supplementation becomes increasingly necessary.

Colorectal Cancer

Also known as larger bowel cancer or colon cancer, colorectal cancer originates in the rectum, colon and appendix. The results of the EPIC study (European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition) which also highlighted the Vitamin D cancer link, monitored the lifestyle and food habits of an equal number of cancer patients and cancer-free participants. The study showed that vitamin D levels were markedly lower in the participants who had cancer. It was concluded that people who had the highest levels of Vitamin D in their circulation (100nm per liter) were at a 40% lower risk of developing cancer compared to those who had the lowest Vitamin D levels (25nm per liter).

Researches following the revelation of the Vitamin D cancer link have shown that with proper vitamin D supplementation, the risk of developing cancer can be lowered to a great extent. We can get Vitamin D from:

  • Sunlight – While overexposure to sunlight is definitely harmful, underexposure is equally bad too. 15-30 minutes of sunlight everyday can synthesize a lot of Vitamin D, reducing the risk of cancer.
  • Food – Including eggs, fatty oil rich fishes, liver and milk in your diet can get you 400 to 600 IU of Vitamin D daily. Though excess Vitamin D is not beneficial, you can include up to 2000 IU of Vitamin D every day in your diet.
  • Vitamin D supplements – Easily available in medicine outlets, pharmacies or online, it is advisable to start on a supplementation program after consultation with a physician. With the medium level being (50-75) nm per liter, people who have Vitamin D levels of 75 nm per liter or more in their circulation have the lowest risk of developing cancer. While people with levels less than 50 nm per liter are more in danger of developing cancer.

Studies have shown that Vitamin D affects the working of a cell. Along with its immune system strengthening function, vitamin D also acts as a barrier for cancer cell proliferation reducing the chances of developing cancer.

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Related posts:

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  2. How Vitamin D Reduces Incidence of Cancer: DINOMIT Model
  3. Vitamin D from UV Exposure Can Decrease Cancer By 80% – ABC NEWS

7 Responses to Vitamin D and Cancer Prevention

  1. Heath Todorovich

    Speaking of vitamin D, it functions a specific way in your body that researchers have considered it a hormone. It is involved in an important task known as the mineral homeostasis that deals with the regulation of the gene expression and also that of cellular differentiation.

  2. Fredric Tutino

    Some might not know about Vitamin D but you should aim to get at least at the very least fifteen minutes of sun on a daily basis. This is because your body will organically create the Vitamin D the minute your body is exposed to the sun. If you usually wear sunscreen all the time, for this time frame, stop wearing it. This is because the chemicals in the sunscreen will prevent your body’s natural absorption of sunlight. Another good part of sunshine is that it is excellent for fighting fatigue and depression. If you have medium to dark skin, then you should try to stay out for 10 minutes more in the sun to reap the full benefits.

  3. Teodoro Hoffee

    The very best Vitamin D source may be the Sun. The basic rule with this would be that the further you are from the equator, the less Sun you get. Also, the darker the skin, the longer you’d have to stay in the sun’s rays for. The minimum time that you need to stay in the sun’s rays would be about Quarter-hour. You need to observe that using sun screen lotion prevents the absorption from the rays. For those who have darker skin, then you can safely stay out in the Sun for about 30 minutes or so. Although it is extremely recommended that you simply maintain the sun for some time, people residing in colder climates might not find this possible.

  4. Moriah Batchelor

    On the topic of Vitamin D, the importance of vitamin D in the development of cancer was further confirmed by a a 2009 study from Sylvia Chistakos, Ph.D., of the UMDNJ-New Jersey Medical School. Her research, shown in The Journal of Biological Chemistry, showed that the active form of vitamin D induces the production of a protein that can stop the growth of breast cancer cells.

  5. Desire Reisser

    A severe lack of Vitamin D in youngsters causes rickets (bone deformities). In adults, a deficiency leads to osteomalacia (softening of bones due to a lack of mineralization). This ailment is different from osteoporosis which in turn causes weak bones and makes them porous.

  6. Modesto Escandon

    Medical research has proven that a proper amount of vitamin d is essential to heart health, muscle growth, and bone strength at all ages. It has also been shown to be indispensable for satisfactory brain and mental function, particularly among people over 50 years old.

  7. Owen Luckey

    Vitamin D acts as an agent that prevents and cures diseases such as rickets and osteomalacia. Rickets is really a popular bone disease which occurs commonly in children because of poor vitamin D IU levels. If the same deficiency occurs in adults, the condition is called osteomalacia. This ailment is extremely much prevalent among women after age 40. The reason are closely related to some diet that’s deficient in Vitamin D, associated with poor sun exposure.

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