Has a vitamin D deficiency been linked to prostate cancer?
Oncologist Charles “Snuffy” Myers Transcript
Opening Title: Is a Vitamin D deficiency linked to prostate cancer?
My background is in drug discovery and drug development, and so when I think of a supplement I think of it in the exact same terms I do a prescription drug. I look for the same of sound mechanism of action and data.So the strongest information is available for Vitamin D. Vitamin D deficiency is common in men of this age group…in our clinic we found half of the new patients coming in were vitamin D deficient. Vitamin D deficiency is associated with an increase in prostate disease, BPH… enlargement of the prostate with age as well as the risk of cancer. Pretty much tracks with the hours of sunlight. Hours of the country with lower sunlight have a much higher risk of prostate cancer than those with high sunlight. And that leads directly to Vitamin D deficiency.
And so we make it a standard practice to measure Vitamin D blood levels in our patients, and then give a dose of vitamin D necessary to bring their vitamin D up. So for the first couple months we measure vitamin D every month and adjust the dose till we find out that patient’s specific dose. For most men it’s somewhere between 5-7000 units a day are necessary.
And the body actually has a built in mechanism to dispose of excess Vitamin D when you do that. The liver turns on a destruction pathway. So Vitamin D has a huge safety margin. The only time people get into trouble with Vitamin D is if they’re taking very high doses of calcium at the same time, which is a completely artificial circumstance, better to take a natural approach which is a Vitamin D level in this range.
Closing Title: Vitamin D levels are easily measured and adjusted