Vitamin D and Calcium Don't Reduce the Risk of Colon Tumors

While previous studies have touted the benefits of vitamin D and calcium for helping reduce the risk of colon tumors, a recent randomized trial has proven both nutrients fail to aid patients with colon tumors.

While previous studies have touted the benefits of vitamin D and calcium for helping reduce the risk of colon tumors, a recent randomized trial has proven both nutrients fail to aid patients with colon tumors.

Published in the New England Journal of Medicine, the study followed a total of 2,259 patients with recently diagnosed adenomas and no known colorectal polyps after a complete colonoscopy.

Each participant was randomized to receive daily doses of either 1,000 units of vitamin D, 1,200 milligrams of calcium, both, or neither.

Three to five years later, the patient cohort repeated colonoscopies to monitor any polyp development.

Results showed 43% of the patients had developed one or more adenomas and treatments with vitamin D, calcium, or a combination of the two did not help the patients. Interestingly enough, even the patients with the lowest levels of vitamin D found no advantage.

John A. Baron, MD, research professor at the University of North Carolina Gillings School of Global Public Health, concluded, “There’s a strong lobby for supplements in general, and vitamin D is getting a lot of attention these days. But, it doesn’t have the benefits we thought it had.”