Healthy Living: Vitamin D
Vitamin D could help protect breast cancer from developing, according to recent research. Marcie Fraser has more.
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Each day you read about research studies, reports on cancer, raising money for cancer research is done in various ways. And one way to raise money is by selling books and that is what Connie Bramer is doing. She wrote a book chronicling her battle with breast cancer three-and-a-half years ago. She was 39.
Bramer said, "I put it all, at the urging of my friends, into a book, my memoir. The good, the bad, the ugly. Some of the proceeds goes to help fund medical research for breast cancer."
Bramer has had a double mastectomy, chemotherapy and a dozen surgeries. She's currently cancer free, but knowing she's the fourth generation in her family to have cancer, she knows the importance of research.
One researcher, Jo Ellen Welsh, has been studying vitamin D and cancer for 20 years.
"We do laboratory studies, animal studies and studied with human tissue," Welsh said.
The study involves how your vitamin D levels reduce your risk of getting breast cancer as well as fighting it, if you have it.
"We found is that vitamin D is a very powerful growth inhibitor of breast cells, so if cells are exposed to vitamin D, they stop growing," Welsh said.
Results show that vitamin D is a very good protective factor against developing breast cancer and could cut your risk by 30 percent. Natural vitamin D comes from the sun and most of us need ten to fifteen minutes a day. A blood test is required to check your levels and if you are low in vitamin D, the doctor can prescribe a prescription for it or you can take a supplement.
Some studies indicate taking vitamin D with calcium may provide moderate protection from breast cancer for premenopausal women. The calcium can be taken in pill form or food.
Milk and dairy products are good sources of calcium. Vitamin D is also show to reduce the risk of other cancers.
"Prostate cancer, colon cancer and leukemias, is it a pretty generalized effect."