Vitamin D May Protect Against Breast Cancer in Black and Latina Women

Vitamin D May Protect Against Breast Cancer in Black and Latina Women

Laura
Author
Laura
Author

Laura Schmidt

4 days ago at 4:40 PM

A new study published in the peer-reviewed journal Cancer has some surprising results. Black and Latina women have low vitamin D levels compared with non-Latina white women and with an increase of Vitamin D doses, the study suggests it can protect against many types of cancers.

Black and Latina women with low levels of vitamin D were more likely to develop breast cancer compared with those with sufficient levels.

Despite existing evidence suggesting that vitamin D may help to prevent breast cancer, few studies have considered the role of race/ethnicity in this link.

A new study published in the peer-reviewed journal Cancer collected data from women who self-identified as Black/African American and non-Black Hispanic. Katie O’Brien, PhD, of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, and her colleagues gathered blood samples from 415 women (290 Black, 125 non-Black Hispanic) who later developed breast cancer as well as 1,447 women (1,010 Black, 437 Latina) who did not.

With an average follow-up of 9.2 years, researchers found that women with adequate levels of vitamin D had a 21% lower breast cancer rate than women with vitamin D deficiency (less than 20 nanograms/milliliter). The link was strongest among Latina women, who had a 48% lower rate, and weakest among Black women, who had an 11% lower rate.

These findings indicate that vitamin D may protect women against breast cancer, including those in racial/ethnic groups with low average levels of vitamin D.

The sun is one of the best sources of vitamin D (the skin absorbs the sun’s UVB radiation and converts it into vitamin D3), but it can also be found in tuna, shrimp, salmon, oysters, mushrooms, egg yolks, and fortified foods like cow’s milk, plant-based milk alternatives (soy, almond, hemp milk), orange juice and certain types of yogurt, according to Healthline.

“Together with prior studies on this topic, this article suggests that vitamin D may be associated with reduced risk of breast cancer, including among women who self-identify as Black, African American, Hispanic or Latina,” O’Brien said in a news release. “Because women who identify as members of these groups have lower vitamin D levels, on average, than non-Hispanic white women, they could potentially receive enhanced health benefits from interventions promoting vitamin D intake. However, questions remain about whether these associations are truly causal and, if so, what levels of vitamin D are most beneficial.”

To learn more about the association between cancer and vitamin D, read “Vitamin D May Protect Against Young-Onset Colorectal Cancer.”

14 comments

Last activity by Cynthia Hoover

C
Cynthia Hoover

Sergio, I currently have my pain managed. I have a 4 sticky patches with a Tens Device. You can Google the Device. And I also have 3 large patches with Lidocaine on my back. No pain right now!

S
Sergei Dubograev

Cynthia that is the worst and I hope you find a way out of that pain! Echoing the comment about, ice helps but my guess is you have already tried that? Meditation and breathing can sometimes also alleviate nerve pain and 10 minutes of still breathing can alleviate some pain. I know there are many resources online that have some advice on those!

M
Mary Foti

I live in Ohio and my doctor has told me to take Vitamin D supplements all year. We have lovely summers, but not enough sunshine to help support healthy vitamin D levels the rest of the year. I've also read elsewhere there may be a connection with Vitamin D deficiency and long/severe COVID, although I don't know if there is sufficient data to confirm that yet.

R
Rose Wilson

Oh nooo... feel better! There's nothing worse than back pain. I actually used one of the ice packs they had here on the shop when I had my last surgery, it was a LIFESAVER! The ice pack was kind of gigantic and really covered a lot more surface area than you would ordinarily find in an ice pack which is why I liked it so much. Isn't it funny how you find these little things can make such a big difference. Hope you are feeling better today! 💐

C
Cynthia Hoover

We really aren't athletes. I am not sure what is actually going on with me.......Just in the last 2 weeks my Spine and my neck (Cervical) have been bothering me....We actually bought a Cervical Traction Device for my neck...This is possible what is bothering me. 🤔 I just don't know.. I am lying on my back on our bed. I have been sleeping on our spare bed in another in our extra bedroom. I wake up about every 3 hours with indescribable pain! I just know got out of the position I just told you about.. I am now lying on my left side. I have to have two pillows under my head. Okay. 2 pillows for my head. 1 pillpw for me to write tf this. I am going to stop here, because my Spine is starting to hurt! It starts with throbbing.

R
Rose Wilson

Oh wow I had no idea that cannabis had a smell to it! I can imagine that would be very surprising moving out to Oregon! It sounds like you and your husband are athletes! I can't wait to check out your video :)

C
Cynthia Hoover

Thanks!

S
Sergei Dubograev

All the things to do outside sound so amazing Cynthia. Minus the cannibas smell! :). Your husband doing his daily hike is so impressive as being outside and exercise is such a good thing for anyone but hopefully the wildfire smoke subsides sooner than later!

C
Cynthia Hoover

Rose, we live in the area called the Rogue Valley. It's pretty...A couple of many things around here....We have Mt Ashland, Snow Skiing, the Britt Theatre, the city of Jacksonville...Lots to do...Prices are high! Floating the Rogue River is a fun thing to do! We rent boats from a little town called Shady Cove....Currently in our Valley there is smoke from Wildfires all over. If you Google, you can see a lot of photos. This was the best year in awhile...we didn't really get smoke until less than a week ago. Air Quality was great. This morning my husband did his daily 3 mile hike and wore a N95 mask...we knew about masks way before Covid..Last night was pretty noisy! https://www.google.com/search?q=Current+photos+of+the+storm+in+the+Rogue+Valley!&oq=Current+photos+of+the+storm+in+the+Rogue+Valley!+&aqs=chrome..69i57j33i160l5j33i299.7619j0j7&client=ms-android-verizon&sourceid=chrome-mobile&ie=UTF-8 I just copied the link from the storms last evening. We have 2 things that are grown for consumption that you might not expect....Lots of Vinyards and lots of Cannabis! The Cannabis really does not smell good. It smells like skunk. We are the only City around the Rogue Valley that voted to not let the Cannabis grow in it.. It doesn't really make a difference, because the smell drifts....All of this is just off the top of my head. The city of Ashland attracts many tourists!

R
Rose Wilson

Hi Cynthia! Oregon is so beautiful - I'm sure it is just breathtaking this time of year! Where in Oregon are you from? I was there in the winter and it was pretty magical then too. I hadn't heard that about living in Oregon, I live in the Virginia area and my doc says I need to take vitamin D too! One more pill to add to the repertoire!

S
Sergei Dubograev

Same! We are in Seattle and my friend constantly told me to eat egg whites, mushrooms and some other weird foods :). But in all honestly i've tried to do so much to get Vitamin D on top of the sun, but sometimes it just rains and rains lol

C
Cynthia Hoover

I live in Oregon. We used to get way more rain than we are now! Climate change? Anyway, experts used to say "If you live in Oregon, you really need Vitamin D.

Jamie
Jamie Laster

Samantha you are so right about that. The sun in safe conditions seems to somehow have this magical effect on happiness, lower stress levels and if there is research that shows that certain types of demographics benefit even more than others, then the more the better!

Samantha
Samantha McLain

Vitamin D is such a powerful tool in so many ways. One of my best friends swore by it and it seems like more and more research comes out that safe, sun exposure, eating egg yolks, mushrooms and a lot of other nutritional foods have so many benefits!

Anonymous

What is OneVillage?

Navigate cancer with the help of the OneVillage community. Whether you're a patient looking to learn from the experiences of others, a supporter searching for the best 'last chemo' gift, or a survivor seeking medically approved content, OneVillage is the place for you. Find relatable content, care planning tools, and community groups with advice from people who understand.

Want to learn more about how it works?

Contact Us