Doctor's Review: Medicine on the Move

October 21, 2021
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D vitamin

To digest food, your bowels produce lithocholic acid, a digestive juice that can be carcinogenic in high amounts. Scientists have learned, however, that vitamin D helps your body detoxify and expel excess lithocholic acid before it can cause colon cancer. And now, a 2008 Journal of Oncology study shows it also helps improve survival. Patients in the study were already diagnosed with colorectal cancer. Vitamin D also helps protect against other types of cancer, helps your heart, strengthens your bones by helping your body use calcium, and boosts your immune system function. Your body produces vitamin D in response to sun exposure, most men need to pop a supplement to see this benefit.

Colon cancer
Heart health
Bone health

1,000 international units (IU) per day has been shown to produce a 50 percent drop in colon-cancer risk
Look for vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol) on the label when you buy supplements
Dietary source: One tablespoon of cod liver oil (1,350 IU) will also provide omega-3 fatty acids

Interactions and side effects
Antiseizure drugs. You may need more D
Calcium-channel blockers. Ask a doctor
Thiazide diuretics. Ask a doctor

This article was accurate when it was published. Please confirm rates and details directly with the companies in question.


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