The Zoomer Report: Double Dose of Vitamin D

We’ve been hearing a lot about the cancer-fighting benefits of vitamin D for the last few years. Now a new study says doubling the recommended dose would prevent thousands of people from getting cancer.

Researchers at the Moores Cancer Center at the University of California San Diego say everyone should take vitamin D supplements of 2,000 International Units a day, which corresponds to the maximum safe level set by Health Canada — and that there are no unreasonable risks from taking that amount. The study, in Annals of Epidemiology, says this could cut the annual incidence of colon and breast cancer by about 25 per cent, or 100,000 cases in Canada and the United States.

The study also says that those who already have the cancers could improve their odds of beating the diseases by taking vitamin D as they undergo chemotherapy and radiation, or while dealing with metastases.

The dosage exceeds the 1,000 IU a day recommendation issued by the Canadian Cancer Society. The Canadian and U.S. governments want more research before increasing the recommended intake. The study authors say there’s no need to wait. Bottom line, check with your doctor before popping more of the sunshine vitamin.

Libby ZnaimerLibby Znaimer, a prominent Canadian journalist specializing in business, politics, and lifestyle issues, is producer and host of The Zoomer Report, a special feature on topics of interest to baby boomers and the 50+. It covers everything from health and wealth to leisure and volunteerism, from the special vantage point of the generation that has changed society in its wake.

Ms. Znaimer is also Vice-President of News and Information for Classical 96.3FM and AM740. Her first book, “In Cancerland – Living Well Is The Best Revenge” – was published in October 2007 by Key Porter.

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