Higher Vitamin D Levels Linked To Higher Breast Cancer Survival

Grilled salmon and asparagus


Higher levels of vitamin D may be linked to better odds of surviving breast cancer tumors, a new study states.

According to the findings published in JAMA Oncology, a team at Kaiser Permanente used data from an ongoing study of California women — 1,666 breast cancer patients — testing their vitamin D blood levels and monitoring their health for nearly seven years (2006-2013).

When compared with women whose vitamin D levels were under 17 nanograams per milliliter, participants with levels higher than 25 nanograms per milliliter were 28 percent less likely to die during the study — even after adjusting for factors like tumor stage, grade and type. In addition, the research indicated that the effect had a stronger influence on pre-menopausal women, the Daily Mail reported.

After adjusting for other variables, those with the highest vitamin D levels were 55 percent more likely to survive. Moreover, they were 42 percent more likely to survive free of invasive disease and 63 percent less likely to die of breast cancer.

“We tried hard to eliminate all possible confounding factors, but this is not a clinical trial,” lead author, Song Yao, an associate professor at the Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo, N.Y. said. “So we cannot say with 100 percent certainty that vitamin D can improve breast cancer survival.”

“Overall, we found a 30 percent reduction of all-cause mortality associated with vitamin D levels at the time of diagnosis,” continued Yao.

Why You Need Vitamin D

As for the significance, vitamin D plays a vital role in the body’s ability to absorb calcium. Too little vitamin D results in soft bones in children (rickets) and fragile, misshapen bones in adults (osteomalacia). Not to mention, vitamin D deficiency has now been linked to…