Vitamin D and Calcium Help Kill Colon Cancer Cells
Monday, April 14, 2008
Board Certified Clinical Nutritionist Byron J. Richards,
There are more reasons to take vitamin D and calcium than just bone health. It has been known for some time that vitamin D and calcium are associated with less colon cancer. Researchers at Emory University have now identified key gene signaling that helps explain how these nutrients work to help kill cancer cells1 and protect your health.
When cells start heading into mutation and malformation (cancer) your body has a natural defense system that is programmed into the aberrant cell so as to kill itself (self-sacrifice for the good of the whole). The scientific jargon for this is apoptosis. Under stress the first thing your cell does is try to repair itself. If that can’t be done and damage is too great, then the cell tries to kill itself. Cancer processes, on the other hand, involve preventing the cell from killing itself while hijacking it and causing replication of mutated cancerous cells. At the cellular level this is a battle of gene switches, in terms of health or cancer winning out.
There are many nutrients that work to benefit the normal function of cells, which includes self inflicted apoptosis as needed and appropriate. Nature provides a considerable arsenal of natural protection that is rooted in a diet of fresh fruits, vegetables, and whole grains – as well as a wide variety of dietary supplements.
The new research shows that vitamin D and calcium specifically assist gene switches to kill cells in the colon that are in a pre-cancer state – thus supporting your body’s natural defense system.
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