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Nutrition, Vitamins & Supplements for Seniors

Vitamin D Acts as Protective Agent Against the Advance of Colon Cancer

Study by VHIO researchers confirms lack of vitamin D increases the aggressiveness of colon cancer

Aug. 16, 2011 – Vitamin D, the current star of the vitamin supplement world and frequent hero of clinical studies for fighting cancers, is back in the news today with research results indicating it plays a role in slowing the growth of colon cancer cells.

The indication that vitamin D and its derivatives have a protective effect against various types of cancer is not new. In the field of colon cancer, numerous experimental and epidemiological studies show that vitamin D3 (or cholecalciferol) and some of its derivatives inhibit the growth of cancerous cells.

 

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Vitamin D Appears Linked With Risk of Skin Cancer, Although Relationship Complex

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People undergoing procedures involving bone or muscle should correct their vitamin D if they want an earlier faster, better, result  - Oct. 6, 2010


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Low Vitamin D in Senior Citizens Signals Cognitive Decline; Higher Parkinson’s Risk

An estimated 40 to 100% of seniors in U.S. and Europe are deficient in vitamin D: linked to fractures, various chronic diseases and death

July 12, 2010


Senior Citizens with Highest Levels of Vitamin D Show Most Vitality as They Age

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More Links Below News Report


Read more on Nutrition, Vitamins & Supplements

 

Researchers at the Vall d'Hebron Institute of Oncology (VHIO), in collaboration with the Alberto Sols Institute of Biomedical Research (CSIC-UAB), have confirmed the pivotal role of vitamin D, specifically its receptor (VDR), in slowing down the action of a key protein in the carcinogenic transformation process of colon cancer cells.

These results are being published in the journal PLoS One.

This protein, known as beta-catenin, which is normally found in intestinal epithelial cells where it facilitates their cohesion, builds up in large quantities in other areas of the cells when the tumor transformation begins.

As a result of these changes, the protein is retained in the cell nucleus, where it facilitate the carcinogenic process, and this is the point at which vitamin D intervenes, or rather, the vitamin D receptor (VDR).

"Our study has confirmed the pivotal role of the VDR in controlling the anomalous signal that sparks off the growth and uncontrolled proliferation of colon cells which, in the final instance, ends up causing a tumor to emerge", says Héctor Palmer, the coordinator of this study and head of the VHIO's Stem Cells and Cancer laboratory.

He continues, "The stimulation of this receptor suppresses the action of the beta-catenin protein, intercepting the series of events that change the intestinal cell into a malignant tumor cell".

The study was conducted on mice and human colon cancer cells. The mice were used as a model to replicate the initial phases of colon cancer.

"These findings show that mice of this kind, which also lack the VDR and hence do not respond to vitamin D, present larger and more aggressive tumors than mice with the VDR", explains Dr. Palmer, and concludes:

"The number of tumors is not influenced by the absence of VDR, which would indicate that this factor does not protect against the appearance of the tumor but does intervene in its growth phase, reducing its aggressiveness".

The researchers then analyzed the effect of the VDR on human colon cancer cell cultures and observed that the concentration of the altered protein, beta-catenin, increased in cells without the VDR. These findings were repeated in the three types of colon cancer cells studied, and confirmed the results observed in the mice.

In two-thirds of advanced colon cancer tumors there was a lack of VDR in the cancer cells, and this circumstance leads us to believe that this loss may contribute to speeding up the growth of the tumor. The findings of this study confirm this supposition.

Vitamin D: essential in the initial phases of colon cancer

In light of these findings, chronic vitamin D deficiency represents a risk factor in the development of more aggressive colon tumors. Patients in the initial stages of colon cancer, the time when the VDR still has a substantial presence in the cells, could benefit from being treated with vitamin D3. However, this would not be useful in the advanced stages of the disease when the presence of the VDR is very much reduced.

The study data support the development of anti-tumor medicines based on the structure of vitamin D, although their use in patients will require further research in the next few years.

How to obtain Vitamin D

The body not only obtains vitamin D from food, especially milk and fish oils, but also manufactures it from exposure to sunlight.

Prolonged exposure is not necessary; just 10 minutes in the sun every day when it is not at its peak is sufficient to stimulate its production. During the summer, when we are more likely to sunbathe, it is important to use the appropriate protective measures against sunburn to avoid future sun damage. Use high-factor solar protection products and do not expose the skin to the sun in the middle of the day to protect against skin cancers.


Vitamins and Minerals: About Vitamin D

Vitamins are organic substances (made by plants or animals), minerals are inorganic elements that come from the earth; soil and water and are absorbed by plants. Animals and humans absorb minerals from the plants they eat. Vitamins and minerals are nutrients that your body needs to grow and develop normally.

Vitamins and minerals have a unique role to play in maintaining your health. For example Vitamin D helps your body absorb the amount of calcium (a mineral) it needs to form strong bones. A deficiency in vitamin D can result in a disease called rickets (softening of the bones caused by the bodies inability to absorb the mineral calcium.) The body cannot produce calcium; therefore, it must be absorbed through our food.

Other minerals like chromium, copper, iodine, iron, selenium, and zinc are called trace minerals because you only need very small amounts of them each day. The best way to get enough vitamins is to eat a balanced diet with a variety of foods. You can usually get all your vitamins from the foods you eat.

About Vitamin D

Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that is naturally present in very few foods, added to others, and available as a dietary supplement. It is also produced endogenously when ultraviolet rays from sunlight strike the skin and trigger vitamin D synthesis. Vitamin D obtained from sun exposure, food, and supplements is biologically inert and must undergo two hydroxylations in the body for activation.

The first occurs in the liver and converts vitamin D to 25-hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D], also known as calcidiol. The second occurs primarily in the kidney and forms the physiologically active 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D [1,25(OH)2D], also known as calcitriol.

Vitamin D is essential for promoting calcium absorption in the gut and maintaining adequate serum calcium and phosphate concentrations to enable normal mineralization of bone and prevent hypocalcemic tetany.

It is also needed for bone growth and bone remodeling by osteoblasts and osteoclasts. Without sufficient vitamin D, bones can become thin, brittle, or misshapen. Vitamin D sufficiency prevents rickets in children and osteomalacia in adults.

Together with calcium, vitamin D also helps protect older adults from osteoporosis.

Vitamin D has other roles in human health, including modulation of neuromuscular and immune function and reduction of inflammation. Many genes encoding proteins that regulate cell proliferation, differentiation, and apoptosis are modulated in part by vitamin D. Many laboratory-cultured human cells have vitamin D receptors and some convert 25(OH)D to 1,25(OH)2D. It remains to be determined whether cells with vitamin D receptors in the intact human carry out this conversion.

>> Read more at the National Institutes of Health, Office Dietary Supplements

 

Links to More Archived Reports About Vitamin D

Fractures that Plague Senior Citizens Can be Reduced by Taking Calcium with Vitamin D

Large study supports growing consensus that combined calcium and vitamin D is more effective than vitamin D alone in reducing fractures

Jan. 14, 2010


More Sunlight May Provide Senior Citizens with Lower Risk of Heart Disease, Diabetes

Prevalence of dangerous metabolic syndrome found among those with low vitamin D levels

May 11, 2009


Calcium Lowers Cancer Risk in Older People: More So for Women Than Men

Long respected by senior citizens as a nutrient for building strength in aging bones, calcium now adds ‘cancer fighter’ to its resume

Feb. 24, 2009


Link Between Blood Pressure and Outside Temperature for Seniors May Tie to Vitamin D

Researchers also urging close monitoring of elderly with hypertension during weather extremes; second study says thinking ability varies with blood pressure

Jan. 16, 2009


Vitamin D is ‘It’ Nutrient with Success Against Diabetes, Cancer, Heart Disease, Osteoporosis

Many of the 23 million Americans with diabetes have low vitamin D levels

Jan. 12, 2009


Scientists Find New Way to Detect, Treat Vitamin D Deficiency that Threatens Heart

Lack of vitamin D spells heart trouble as well as a lot of other ailments

Dec. 2, 2008


Remember the Bump? It's Back for Older Women as Way to Prevent Falls, Hip Fractures

Website to fight falls and fractured hips, Survey finds women not well informed – offers calcium calculator

Sept. 13, 2008


Low Level of Vitamin D Seems to Be Invitation to Most Deadly Diseases: Increases Death Risk

May be associated with death through effect on blood pressure, the body’s ability to respond to insulin, obesity and diabetes risk

Aug. 12, 2008


Calcium Calculator Now Online to Help Senior Citizens Fight Osteoporosis, Bone Breaks

People who are physically active and get enough calcium can strengthen their bones - even in old age

Sept. 12, 2008

Financial Relief for Volkswagen Diesel Owners

You may be eligible for money damages if you owned or leased one of these VW, Porsche or Audi vehicles.

In the major scandal of 2015, Volkswagen cheated you and the world. They rigged diesel emission controls so you, nor regulators, would know how much pollution their cars were adding to our environment.

They were caught and have reserved $7.3 billion to help "make it right" with victims.

If you owned or leased one of these vehicles, contact us now.

 Beth Janicek, Board Certified Personal Injury Attorney Janicek Law attorneys are actively pursuing these cases against VW. Do Not Wait...

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Vehicles Involved

VW Jetta (2009–2015)

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VW Beetle (2012–2015)

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Audi A3 (2010-2015)

VW Touareg (2009–2016)

Porsche Cayenne (2015)

Audi A6, A7, A8, Q5 Quattro (2016)

 

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