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Old 07-03-2016, 11:11 PM   #1
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vitamin D anyone?

I'm curious, does anyone know the "best" level for Vit D hydroxy etc for women with breast cancer? ...and does anyone know the research articles that talk about the link between vit D and breast cancer spread and survival? Thanks!~

What level is an appropriate level of vit D to aim for?
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Old 07-04-2016, 08:12 AM   #2
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Re: vitamin D anyone?

Between 50 - 60 when you get measured. Its about the middle of the normal range of 32- 100. I struggle to be there even though I take 5000 iu of d3 per day. So, once a week, I take 10,000 but still only get to 50. I think d3 metabolism was/ is part of my bc journey.
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Old 07-04-2016, 10:59 AM   #3
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Re: vitamin D anyone?

Thanks Becky! My PCP was concerned because my VITAMIN D.HYDROXY was 59.8 and she thought that was too high. She prefers 20-40, but of course she is just a PCP and not an oncologist. It made me wonder what the "ideal" range for breast cancer really is! My lab report does not indicate what a normal range might be. I searched the internet and it is not consistant on the range of vitamin D.
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Old 07-04-2016, 01:05 PM   #4
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Re: vitamin D anyone?

My oncologist, endocrinologist and pcp are all happy with vitamin d hydroxy at 50-60. And this was both before and after my 2nd breast cancer. They don't like it too high...
March, 2000: 48, Post menopausal (5 yrs HRT) Left breast, IDC 3mm/DCIS 1.6cm, ER+/PR-/Her2+++, mod differentiated, MIB low, lumpectomy, node neg via SNB, rads=33 Stage 1a
June, 2000: Tamox 4.5 years,Femara for 5 years (end in Jan. 2010)
Sept, 2012: 61, Via mamm, ultrasound, biopsy, right breast, 2.3cm tumor, ER+/PR-/Her2+++, poorly diff, KI67 60-70%
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October, 2012: Bi Mast with tissue expanders, port placement
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Old 07-05-2016, 04:35 PM   #5
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Re: vitamin D anyone?

I read an article where the joint pain from Aromatase inhibitors was eased at a Vitamin D level of 66ng/ml. Perhaps it would be good to aim for a level of 70. Vit D is toxic when the hydroxycalciferol is 150 or over. For those stuggling to get the levels up with OTC supplements of Vitamin D they make a prescription dose of 50000 units usually taken once a week.

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Old 07-05-2016, 05:43 PM   #6
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Re: vitamin D anyone?

I read somewhere that 70 - 80 was a good level to be.
Can't remember where I read this but I'll check my notes and post info asap! I'm sure I read research that stated we do better with good Vit D levels.

I started taking Vit D when on Femara. Been off Femara since December but continue to take Vit D3 daily.

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Old 07-05-2016, 11:15 PM   #7
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Re: vitamin D anyone?

After staying indoors for over 8 years, i was finally prescribed Vitamin D(D3) over the counter 1000 IUa day a few months ago. But I aso take a Centrum Woman's Vitamin, so end up taking 2000 IU in total.

Was told to take two calcium pills (600 mg each)as well. Seems the two are related somehow. (Help with the absorption?)

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Old 07-07-2016, 09:41 AM   #8
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Re: vitamin D anyone?


Yes, Becky, I agree load up on that Vitamin D for both cancer prevention and bone health as a woman. I take about 4000 to 2000 IU per day. I think the research is relatively clear that it helps prevent a mets as the article above sited, and it helps to prevent cancer to begin with...

Some new research is strengthening the case for vitamin D’s role in metastasis prevention. A preliminary study in mice by investigators at Stanford University indicated that breast cancer cells metastasize, or spread, more readily when the animals had low levels of the vitamin.
Cancer incidence declined with increased 25(OH)D. Women with 25(OH)D concentrations of 40 nanograms/milliliter (ng/ml) or greater had a 67 percent lower risk of cancer than women with levels of 20 ng/ml or less.
PS The entire her2 delirious pathway seems to respond to D in being blocked or abrogated according to an article I read some years ago... And vit D is also effective in ERα-negative breast cancer patients...

another good article on vit d

low as 5000 IU of vitamin D per day can cause kidney stones in susceptible individuals. The National Academy of Medicine has set the tolerable upper intake level at 4000 IU. Note that there is a risk that massive vitamin D supplementation could actually promote breast cancer.
2002- dx her2 positive DCIS/bc TX Mast, herceptin chemo

Last edited by RobinP; 07-07-2016 at 10:59 AM..
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Old 07-07-2016, 09:26 PM   #9
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Re: vitamin D anyone?

I actually have high serum calcium (just above the normal range) ....not quite sure that THAT means! I'm betting there is some connection though.
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Old 07-08-2016, 10:09 AM   #10
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Re: vitamin D anyone?

There is a thread here. http://her2support.org/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=43711

You may find the Holick video, Carole Baggerly video a breast cancer patient and founder of grass Grass Roots Health, and some of the other material interesting.
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Old 07-08-2016, 10:15 AM   #11
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Re: vitamin D anyone?

I take vitamin D3 a couple different ways. Once with a calcium-magnesium supplement, the other by itself, but along with a K2 supplement.

It was on a fibroid discussion forum that I learned a different and important perspective on vitamin D -- your body might be pushing it low to counterbalance other metabolic activity caused by elevated calcium for instance. This patient was persistent in trying to get her symptoms treated, constantly being thwarted by docs, she felt certain she had parathyroid issues. Finally she found a specialist who agreed with her and removed an enlarged parathyroid and her health improved; even her fibroid went away. She felt even more strongly after this experience that we can't elevate or demonize nutrient levels as they might be where they are for a reason and trying to "fix" an issue might cause more problems such as more calcium/bone issues.

The French did a study of vitamin D that I came across. They looked at sunlight exposure, food sources and supplementation of D3. By far the best source was sunlight, like maybe 65% of the RDA with 15 mins of skin exposure to sunshine daily. Supplements was maybe 10% and food was a bit less. Don't quote me on those numbers, they are only rough approximations, I would have to dig up the original study again hehe.

Other things not known are that the body needs adequate magnesium to activate vitamin D -- from D2, from D3, from sunlight even. How crazy is that? So you can take vitamin D and go hang outside but your body still might not be able to use it at the cellular level if your magnesium is off.

Another weird one, if your digestion isn't optimal then your body will have a hard time absorbing vitamin D and magnesium (and other nutrients besides) in your gut. It is in the duodenum, the first part of the small intestine after the stomach where digestive enzymes and bile work to help our bodies assimilate nutrients. If your zinc level was low (common for breast cancer patients) then your pancreatic enzyme levels might be impaired and you won't be absorbing as well. If you have liver mets, a history of gall bladder issues, and (I'm thinking) are HR+ then it is more possible that your bile activity could be impaired as well. I have been taking plant-based digestive enzymes after, in spite of plenty of water and magnesium, ongoing issues with constipation persist. Taking the digestive enzymes has turned things around so even without testing, based on observation alone but working with my naturopathic onc, we have been able to treat an underlying deficiency that persisted in spite of correcting my zinc levels.

Anyhoo, working with a practitioner schooled in functional medicine and integrative oncology is a great way to go a bit deeper into common nutritional imbalances found in cancer patients and to address appropriately.

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