Weekly Health Update:
Vitamin D, Cardiovascular Disease,Cancer, and Death
By, Robert A. Wascher, MD, FACS
The information in this column is intended for informational purposes only, and does not constitute medical advice or recommendations by the author. Please consult with your physician before making any lifestyle or medication changes, or if you have any other concerns regarding your health.
Welcome to Weekly Health Update
“A critical weekly review of important new research findings for health-conscious readers”
VITAMIN D, CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASE,CANCER AND DEATH
Among all of the vitamins, only Vitamin D appears tohave clinically significant health benefits in reducing the risk of death associated with cardiovascular disease, fractures, and cancer, based upon numerous recent clinical research study findings (for a comprehensive update on the role of Vitamin D as part of a cancer prevention lifestyle, please see my new book, A Cancer Prevention Guide for the Human Race, which is now availablefrom Amazonand Barnes & Noble).
A newly-published clinical research study, which appears in the current issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, prospectively evaluated 1,194 elderly men (average age was 71 years) over a period of nearly 13 years. Blood levels of Vitamin D were measured in these elderly male men, and the results of these blood tests were then correlated with subsequent health outcomes.
In this prospective public health study, with extensive long-term follow-up, very low and very high blood levels of Vitamin D were associated with a significantly increased risk of death. In fact, a whopping 50 percent increase in the risk of death was associated with both very low (<46 nmol/L) and very high (>98 nmol/L) concentrations of Vitamin D in the blood. Death due to cancer was two times more common with very low Vitamin D levels, while very high levels of Vitamin D increased the risk of death due to cancer by almost three-fold. At the same time, death due to cardiovascular disease was nearly twice as likely in elderly men with very low Vitamin D levels, but not in men with very high levels of this hormone-like vitamin.
The findings of this prospective public health study add to the enormous volume of previously published clinical research data on the health effects of Vitamin D. As this study suggests, there may be an optimal concentration of Vitamin D in the blood that is associated with a decreased risk of death from both cardiovascular disease and cancer. Meanwhile, a healthy diet that emphasizes fresh fruits, brightly-colored fresh vegetables, whole grains, and fatty fish (and minimal red meat and other animal-based foods) is your best bet for a long and healthy life!
For a comprehensive, evidence-based review of the importance of Vitamin D and diet in a cancer prevention lifestyle, order your copy of my new landmark book, A Cancer Prevention Guide for the Human Race, fromAmazonorBarnes & Noble!
I and the staff of Weekly Health Update would again like to take this opportunity to thank the more than 100,000 health-conscious people, from around the world, who visit this premier global health information website every month. (As of 9/16/2010, more than 1,000,000 health-conscious people have visited Weekly Health Update so far this year!) As always, we enjoy receiving your stimulating feedback and questions, and I will continue to try and personally answer as many of your inquiries as I possibly can.
Disclaimer: As always, my advice to readers is to seek the advice of your physicianbeforemaking any significant changes in medications, diet, or level of physical activity
Dr. Wascher is an oncologic surgeon, professor of surgery, cancer researcher, oncology consultant, and a widely published author
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Copyright 2007 - 2010
Robert A. Wascher, MD, FACS
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Dr. Wascher's Archives:
9-19-2010: Fruits and Vegetables Improve Memory
9-12-2010: Low-Carb Diet and Risk of Death
8-1-2010: Physician Error
7-25-2010: Obesity and Cancer Risk
6-27-2010: Soy, Curcumin & Prostate Cancer Risk
5-30-2010: Medical Research Studies & “Spin”
5-9-2010: Soy Foods & Stomach Cancer Risk
4-18-2010: Coffee Improves HDL Cholesterol Levels
3-28-2010: Aspirin & Breast Cancer Survival
3-21-2010: Obesity, Alcohol & Liver Disease
3-14-2010: Nuts, Diet & Obesity
2-28-2010: Soy Isoflavones & Recurrent Prostate Cancer
2-14-2010: Pancreatic Cancer Risk, Sodas & Juice
1-31-2010: Concord Grape Juice Improves Memory
1-24-2010: Mozart, Music, Babies & Health
1-17-2010: Breast Cancer, Physical Therapy & Lymphedema
1-3-2010: Ginkgo Biloba, Memory & Cognitive Health
12-20-2009: CT Scans & Cancer Risk
11-29-2009: Exercise & Prostate Cancer Risk
11-22-2009: Genistein (Soy Isoflavone) & Prostate Cancer
11-15-2009: Breast Cancer Treatment & Chronic Pain
1-8-2009: Vitamin D & Breast Cancer Risk
11-1-2009: Exercise & Prostate Cancer Risk
10-25-2009: HPV Virus & Risk of Breast Cancer
10-11-2009: Vitamin D & Falls in the Elderly
10-4-2009: Surgery, NSQIP, Complications & Death
9-27-2009 Stress, Heart Disease, Exercise & Death
9-20-2009: Vitamin D & Colorectal Cancer Survival
9-13-2009: H1N1 Swine Flu Update
9-7-2009: Green Tea, Aging & Lifespan
8-30-2009: Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), Diet & Fiber
8-23-2009: Update on Prostate Cancer and Cryotherapy
8-2-2009: Honesty, Dishonesty & Brain Function
7-26-2009: Coronary Artery CT Scans & Cancer Risk
7-12-2009: Breast Cancer & Metformin (Glucophage)
7-5-2009: Prostate Cancer & Green Tea
6-21-2009: Red Yeast Rice, Statins & Cholesterol
6-7-2009: Diet, Soy & Breast Cancer Risk
5-31-2009: Diet and Prostate Cancer Risk
5-24-2009: Diabetes, Glucose Control & Death
5-10-2009: Hemorrhoids & Surgery
4-26-2009: Are We Really Losing the War on Cancer?
4-19-2009: Exercise in Middle Age & Risk of Death
4-12-2009: Can Chronic Stress Harm Your Heart?
3-15-2009: Depression, Stress, Anger & Heart Disease
10-26-2008: Smoking & Quality of Life
10-19-2008: Agent Orange & Prostate Cancer
10-12-2008: Pomegranate Juice & Prostate Cancer
9-21-2008: Does Tylenol® (Acetaminophen) Cause Asthma?
4-27-2008: Stents vs. Bypass Surgery for Coronary Artery Disease; The “DASH” Hypertension Diet & Cardiovascular Disease Prevention; Testosterone Therapy for Women with Decreased Sexual Desire & Function
4-6-2008: Human Papilloma Virus (HPV), Pap Smear Results & Cervical Cancer; Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) Infection & Oral Cancer; Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) & the Risk of Gastroesophageal Reflux Disorder (GERD)
12-16-2007: Honey vs. Dextromethorphan vs. No Treatment for Kids with Night-Time Cough, Acupuncture & Hot Flashes in Women with Breast Cancer, Physical Activity & the Risk of Death, Mediterranean Diet & Mortality