For years now, I’ve been reporting a steady drumbeat of findings that show vitamin D prevents chronic diseases — including cancer.
And the findings just keep coming. In fact, a new Japanese study just found a strong link between higher levels of vitamin D in the blood and lower overall cancer risk.
Of course, mainstream scientists still narrowly focus on vitamin D’s role in relation to calcium and healthy bones, teeth, and muscles.
Even when they do conduct a study that shows the potent benefits of vitamin D for cancer and other chronic diseases, they almost seem apologetic.
In their reports, they seem to imply, “We know vitamin D benefits bone health. But — hey — guess what? We were surprised to find that vitamin D may also protect against chronic diseases, including some cancers.”
Well, they’re late to the party to say the least. It’s mind-boggling to me how they managed to miss all the science on vitamin D that’s been building over the past 100 years…
Scientists somehow still doubt D
In this new study’s introduction, the Japanese researchers admit that several previous studies with European and North and South American populations have already shown the benefits of vitamin D for protection against chronic diseases and cancer.
But they seem to suggest everything’s still up for grabs since this study is the first to examine vitamin D levels in a Japanese population.
Did they really think they’d come up with wildly different results?! More likely, the study kept them funded and working for another 16 years. (That’s how long they followed the participants, on average.)
To get things going, the researchers looked at health records for 33,736 Japanese men and women ages 40 to 69 years. At beginning of the study, they asked the participants to provide detailed information on medical history, diet, and lifestyle. They also took blood samples to measure vitamin D levels.
The researchers then divided the participants into four groups, ranked from lowest to highest according to the vitamin D levels in their blood.
Over the follow-up period, they discovered 3,301 new cases of cancer reported. Before they determined the impact vitamin D had on cancer risk, they controlled the data for other well-known cancer risk factors, such as age, alcohol intake, smoking, and weight.
Turns out, both women and men with the highest vitamin D levels had a 20 percent lower overall risk of cancer. (Surprise, surprise. This figure falls in line with previous studies on populations in Europe and the Americas. Who would have thought?)
Plus, men with the highest vitamin D levels had up to a 50 percent lower risk of developing liver cancer than men with the lowest vitamin D levels.
Granted, liver cancer is more common in Asian populations who have higher rates of hepatitis B than in the U.S. And chronic hepatitis infections increase the risk of liver cancer by up to 200 times.
I researched hepatitis in China with Nobel laureate Baruch Blumberg. We found that treating hepatitis patients with vitamins and minerals — such as selenium — could significantly reduce the risk of developing liver cancer.
You see, selenium often works in tandem with vitamin E, a fat-soluble vitamin, to fight against cancer activity. So, now it seems, we should probably add vitamin D, another fat-soluble vitamin, to the list of nutrients to give to patients with hepatitis.
Placing it all in context
Of course, in my view, there were several limitations to the study.
For one, the researchers didn’t ask whether or not participants took vitamin D supplements. Perhaps because supplement use and food fortification still aren’t as popular in Japan. But the Japanese diet also typically includes a lot more fish and seafood, which are high in vitamin D, compared to European and North American populations. In any case, I’d like to see a more detailed analysis that included questions about dietary supplementation and its effect on cancer risk.
Second, the Japanese scientists didn’t do a good job placing this study in context with the dozens of other major studies on vitamin D and cancer. Instead, they presented their findings as a kind of “revelation” that a natural approach such as vitamin D can help prevent cancer.
But, to me, this study just confirms the dozens of previous studies that also found vitamin D helps prevent and reverse chronic diseases, including cancers. And in reality, not enough people supplement with vitamin D, contributing to nationwide and worldwide deficiencies of vitamin D.
As a reminder, you should take 10,000 IU daily of vitamin D year-round. And remember, that dose may sound high, but it’s really not high at all when you compare it to typical dosage amounts of other common nutrients in the more standard terms of milligrams and micrograms.
You can now find vitamin D in a convenient liquid form together with the potent marine carotenoid, astaxanthin. That’s a bonus for brain health, hearing, and vision. (You can find more information about astaxanthin on my website, www.DrMicozzi.com.)
Also, make sure to ask your doctor at your next check-up to test your vitamin D levels with a 25(OH)D test. Ideally, you want your levels to be between 50 nmol/L and 75 nmol/L. (That’s nanomoles, which are tiny concentrations relative to other nutrients.)
You can also start spending some time in the sun each day, as we’ve just entered the time of year when the sun is high enough in the sky throughout the U.S., from about 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., to activate vitamin D in the skin. Get just 15 minutes per day of sun exposure directly on the skin — without sunscreen — to allow for maximum absorption.
For more information on the benefits of vitamin D, as well as more natural approaches to preventing and reversing cancer, refer to my online learning protocol, Dr. Micozzi’s Authentic Anti-Cancer Protocol. You can learn more about this protocol, or enroll in the course today, simply by clicking here.
“Plasma 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentration and subsequent risk of total and site specific cancers in Japanese population: large case-cohort study within Japan Public Health Center-based Prospective Study cohort,” BMJ 2018;360:k671