Low vitamin D linked to cancer in men

April 19, 2006 in Cancer Prevention, Nutrition Topics in the News, Vitamins, Minerals, Supplements

Low vitamin D linked to cancer in men

According to researchers at Wake Forest University in North Carolina, men with low levels of vitamin D appear to be at an increased risk of cancer incidence and mortality, especially from cancers of the digestive system.

To study the effects of the vitamin on cancer risk, researchers correlated determinants of vitamin D exposure with serum levels in nearly 1000 men based on dietary and supplementary vitamin D, skin pigmentation, geographical residence and sunlight exposure. Researchers then computed vitamin D levels for over 47,000 men in the Health Professionals Follow-up Study.

During the study period of 14 years, researchers found an increment of 25 nmol/L in the predicted blood levels of vitamin D was associated with a 17 percent reduction in total cancer incidence, a 29 percent reduction in total cancer incidence and a 45 percent reduction in digestive system cancer mortality.

These latest findings suggest that vitamin D, the major source of which is derived from casual exposure to sunlight, may play an active role in cancer prevention, although further studies are needed.

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