Two studies showed increased cancer survival with high vitamin D levels. The first study comes from the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Shanghai by Hui Wang and colleagues (Ref.1) . They pooled results from 25 different studies and looked for vitamin D blood levels and death rates in 17, 332 cancer patients. They found that cancer survival rates were better and cancer death rates were lower when patients had higher 25-hydroxy-vitamin D levels. Specifically, levels for every 10-nmol/L increase of the 25-hydroxy-vitmain D level there was a corresponding increase of cancer survival of 4%!
Normal blood levels for 25-hydroxy-vitamin D are between 30 and 80 ng/mL. The strongest link between vitamin D blood levels and cancer survival was for breast cancer, lymphoma and colorectal cancer.
The second study comes from the Department of Medicine of the University of Illinois at Chicago and dealt with prostate cancer (Ref.2). 667 men aged 40 to 79 with elevated PSA levels got prostate biopsies done and were also screened for vitamin D levels. It was found that 44% of men with positive prostate cancer had very low vitamin D blood levels. The majority of men tested had levels of 20 ng/mL or less. A subgroup of men tested had levels of 12 ng/mL and were found on their biopsies to have very advanced and aggressive prostate cancers when compared to those men whose vitamin D levels were in the normal range. Dr. Adam B. Murphy, the lead author of this study said that men who have been diagnosed with prostate cancer should be tested for vitamin D deficiency and when confirmed should be treated for this with adequate doses of vitamin D3. Many investigators are now recommending to take vitamin D3 in high enough doses to exceed 80 ng/mL of 25-hydroxy-vitamin D blood levels.
More information is available at Vitamins, Minerals and Supplements
References: 1. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 20114 April 29, 2014 2. Clin Cancer Res. 2014, May 1;20: 2289-99.