New Study Confirms Biochemical Reasons Vitamin D Fights Cancers
By Michael Mooney, December 31, 2012

A new study, presented in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences by McGill University researchers shines the light for those that are skeptical that vitamin D has strong anti-cancer effects.

The study showed that vitamin D affects a protein, called cMYC, that more than half of the different cancer cells depend on for cell division and growth, including cancers, like breast, colon and pancreatic cancer.

Vitamin D, if taken in high enough potencies, also increases substances that can completely shut down cancer cell growth.

Lead researcher, Professor John White, said, "Our results show that vitamin D puts the brakes on cMYC function, suggesting that it may slow the progression of cellls from premalignant to malignant states and keep their proliferation in check."

"More importantly, we found that vitamin D strongly stimulates the production of a natural antagonist of cMYC called MXD1, essentially shutting down cMYC function," he said.

"We hope that our research will encourage people to maintain adequate vitamin D supplementation and will stimulate the development of large, well-controlled cancer chemoprevention trials to test the effects of adequate supplementation."

Some of the world's top vitamin D researchers consider 50 to 80 ng/mL to be an ideal "OH-vitamin D" blood level for normally healthy people. That vitamin D has strong anti-cancer effects gives us a good reason to get an "OH-vitamin D" blood test.

We don't want low vitamin D blood levels, but most people test at about 20 ng/mL or lower.

For people who have cancer the ideal blood level could be considerably higher than 80 ng/mL, so we need studies to determine optimal anti-cancer doses.

How To Test
With a goal of having my "OH-vitamin D" test at 50 to 60 ng/mL I started out taking 6,000 IU of vitamin D per day and then waited two months so that my blood level stabilized enough to get an accurate measurement of my OH-vitamin D.

With 6,000 IU, my OH-vitamin D blood test measured 43 ng/mL, so I increased the dose to 7,500 IU per day and waited two months and re-tested. The test result was 52 ng/mL, which is in the ideal range of 50 to 80 ng/mL.

I also experimented with 11,000 IU, which gave me a blood level of 63 ng/mL.

I prefer taking less, so I am satisfied with the 52 ng/mL blood level that 7,500 IU gave me and that's what I'm taking now.

I will re-test in a few months to see if it stays the same.

When taking vitamin D doses this high it is important to get regular blood tests to be sure that we aren't experiencing hypercalcemia, which means too much calcium in the blood.

Optimal higher doses of vitamin D can improve calcium absorption as much as 65%, so it's also possible that one won't need to take as much calcium.

Everyone has different dosage needs so getting the OH-vitamin D blood test two months after you've been taking a specific dose is important for our long-term, cancer-free better health.

Vitamin D experts suggest that people get an OH-vitamin D blood test to see what level they are starting with and if it isn't 50 ng/mL consider taking between 2,500 IU and 5,000 IU of vitamin D per day and then waiting two months and getting the OH-vitamin D blood test to see if the dose you were taking is enough.

Most of us that are over 40 years old find that we need 6,000 IU per day to get our OH-vitamin D blood level to be 50 ng/mL, but some need less.

Younger people's bodies make more efficient use of vitamin D and need less to get an adequate blood level. A 70-year old converts vitamin D into its active form in the body about 25% as well as a 20-year old, so older people generally need higher doses.

Heavier, bigger people need more vitamin D than thin or small people, because the tissues in our bodies soak up vitamin D.

Darker skinned people generally need considerably more vitamin D than light-skinned people.

You can get an OH-vitamin D blood test without asking your doctor to test it by buying it online for $65 from

However, having your doctor give you the test may cost less if you have insurance, depending on your co-pay.

For more information on vitamin D, please go to the non-profit vitamin D research center at and improve your chances of living a cancer-free life.

Reference: Salehi-Tabar, R et al. Vitamin D receptor as a master regulator of the c-MYC/MXD1 network. Published online before print October 29, 2012, doi:10.1073/pnas.1210037109 PNAS October 29, 2012 201210037

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