A study from Sweden’s Karolinska Institute examined records from 10 observational studies and pooled them in a meta-analysis. There were a total of 17,696 women who had been verified to have breast cancer, and during the study there were 2,791 total deaths and 1,558 breast cancer specific deaths. When the investigators compared the group of patients with vitamin C supplements versus a control group of no supplements they found differences in mortality overall and in mortality from breast cancer. Vitamin C supplements reduced total mortality by 19% and death rates from breast cancer by 15%.
When dietary intake of vitamin C was measured in 100 mg increments per day, the surprising result was that 100 mg of vitamin C per day was reducing overall death rates by 27% and breast cancer specific death rates by 22%. The authors did not indicate whether this was a linear dose relationship, but definitely the higher dose vitamin C groups had better survival, regardless of whether some of these women died of breast cancer or from other causes. The large number of participants and the observation that higher vitamin C vitamin C causes lower death rates in both breasts cancer and other causes of death make this a very strong study. It makes also sense that vitamin C as an antioxidant would support the metabolism of all cells including the immune system.
Next time you walk by a health food store, get some vitamin C.
More information is available at Vitamins, Minerals and Supplements.
Reference: Eur J Cancer. 2014 May;50 (7):1223-31.