Breast Health and Vitamin D

Research shows a correlation between breast cancer and vitamin D deficiency. Learn how vitamin D can protect your overall health and how to get enough.

Research shows a correlation between breast cancer and vitamin D deficiency. Learn how vitamin D can protect your overall health and how to get enough.

A woman in a blue polka dot dress holds a flower to her breast.
Photo by Aleksandra Sapozhnikova on Unsplash

In This Article

Vitamin D and Breast Health

Some of the most exciting research regarding breast health is on how vitamin D can be protective.

In one 2019 meta-analysis of 22 studies, researchers concluded that vitamin D deficiency is directly related to breast cancer.

In another meta-analysis, this one from all continents except Australia, researchers evaluated more than 25 studies that measured the risk of breast cancer and vitamin D insufficiency (a level of extreme deficiency). They found that 67 percent of breast cancer patients were vitamin-D insufficient, compared to 33 percent of the control group, with healthy breasts.

In yet another meta-analysis, published in the British Journal of Cancer, researchers evaluated 30 studies and more than 31,000 breast cancer patients for vitamin D levels. Those who had the highest levels of vitamin D had a 42 percent lower risk of dying from cancer than the women who had the lowest levels of vitamin D. In the same study, the highest vitamin D levels were also linked to improved prognosis in colon and prostate cancers.

Thankfully, in 2000, the incidence of breast cancer for women started to decline, likely because of a decline in hormone replacement therapy (HRT). Still, breast cancer is the most prevalent cancer diagnosed worldwide for women. According to a 2021 estimates, 1 in 8 (12.4 percent of) American women will be diagnosed with breast cancer over their lifetimes.

See also Vitamin D Linked to Shorter Hospital Stays?

Vitamin D Deficiency

Sadly, vitamin D deficiencies are still quite prevalent in the US, and around the world. According to a 2021 StatPearls epidemiology report, there are more than 1 billion people worldwide with a vitamin D deficiency.

In the US alone, 35 percent of middle-age adults are vitamin D deficient, while nearly 50 percent of infants and 61 percent of the elderly are vitamin D deficient.

In India, 96 percent of the elderly population is vitamin-D deficient, and in Turkey, that number is 90 percent.

This is a global health crisis.

There are reasons why more and more folks are vitamin D deficient. Of course a lack of sunlight is a major cause, but poor absorption from food also plays a big role.

Digestive issues, including food intolerances and chronic digestive distress, are a sign of poor nutrient assimilation and often linked to vitamin D deficiencies.

Liver and kidney disease have  been identified as a cause of vitamin D deficiency.  While supplementing with vitamin D is an important practice, it doesn’t always work. Underlying factors like digestive, liver, and kidney health must be evaluated as well.

Learn more about healing your digestive issues in my FREE Digestive Troubleshooting Guide.

4 Ways Vitamin D Works for Breast Health

Research has shown that vitamin D is linked to breast health. Here are four ways sufficient vitamin D can influence your health:

  1. Vitamin D has been found to support healthy cellular replication and natural cell death, called apoptosis.
  2. Vitamin D regulates dozens of gene pathways that are linked to breast health.
  3. Vitamin D supports healthy breast tissue by regulating the body’s natural response to inflammation triggers.
  4. Vitamin D supports the activity of numerous immune cells, including killer T cells linked to breast health.

See also 10 Reasons to Remember Your Vitamin D this Winter

Seasonal Vitamin D Requirements

Every winter, even in southern states, it becomes more difficult to get vitamin D because the sun is often too low in the sky. UVB rays are blocked. These are the rays that trigger the manufacturing of vitamin D.

I recommend getting your vitamin D levels tested annually and trying to maintain an optimal level of vitamin D3, which is between 50-80 ng/mL. A typical dose in the winter for most people is 4-5000 IU a day, but individual response will vary, so it’s important to get tested regularity.

See also Vitamin D Science and the Top 12 Foods You Need Now

7 thoughts on “Breast Health and Vitamin D”

  1. thank you for this information on vitamin D- and the related articles.
    thanks for all your work to keep us healthy on many levels

    Reply
  2. What is the best brand specifically of vitamin D and omega-3 available. What should I look for when I go shopping for vitamin D is cod liver oil better? Should they be third-party tested? Should how do I know that they’re not contaminated? I was thinking of Nordic naturals

    Reply
  3. Imagine how helpful it would be if our skies where not sprayed almost everyday. Blocking the sun should be a crime against humanity.

    Reply

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