You've known for some time how powerful vitamin D is for treating the flu, keeping bones strong, and helping your body stay healthy. But it's taken the medical pundits a long time to catch up. And they're finding that this fabulous nutrient, along with calcium, can help prevent breast cancer.
As you may know, calcium and vitamin D are woefully inadequate in the population. Low levels are strongly associated with breast cancer. Rachael Zinaman is a dietician at the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. She did a retrospective study on 100 consecutive breast-cancer patients.
Astonishingly, 90% of the patients consumed less than the paltry RDA for vitamin D. Furthermore, 90% didn't even ingest the 1,000 mg RDA of calcium. Amazingly, 63% of the women had no discernable calcium intake at all. Zinamam defined vitamin D deficiency as a blood level below 30 ng/ml.
Your body tightly regulates the calcium in your blood. It will maintain high levels at all costs. It will even pull it out of your bones to keep your blood level high. Some studies have shown that 65% of breast cancer patients have hyperparathyroid hormone excess. Your body secretes parathyroid hormone (PTH) to raise your blood calcium when your intake is deficient. Unfortunately, PTH snatches calcium from your bones. PTH generated calcium also can wind up in your soft tissues. One of the hallmarks of breast cancer is calcifications on mammography.
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Don't think this tidbit is only for women. Vitamin D and calcium are major players in all aspects of your health. Cancers of all kinds, obesity, blood pressure, and heart disease are all related to calcium and vitamin D.
I suggest that you have your vitamin D measured in the spring. That is when you are the most likely to show a deficiency (after the winter months). I want my patients to be in the upper quartile of the lab reference range. Orthodox doctors are duplicating my recommendation of 50,000 units of vitamin D weekly for 8-12 weeks to correct a deficiency. The dose is gradually reduced to once every two weeks for maintenance therapy. Make sure you're also getting outdoors so your body can produce some vitamin D naturally inside you for free.
As for calcium, living foods (vegetables, nuts and seeds) are your best sources. If you're eating plenty of these foods, you don't need to take more than 600 mg daily by supplement.