Vitamin D and Lymphoma

Q I recently ordered a bottle of your SunPower Vitamin D capsules, which my husband and I are using. I just noticed on the label, however, the precaution that lymphoma patients should not use vitamin D. My husband is presently in remission from non-Hodgkin lymphoma. There is a lot of news in the media about vitamin D preventing cancers, so I’m confused. Can you clarify this?

KATHLEEN, Orangeville, ON

A Research has not resolved what appears to be conflicting evidence here. On the one hand, a recent study has found a reduced risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoma in people with a high dietary intake of vitamin D.1 On the other hand, there is an established correspondence between skin cancers related to sun exposure (which increases the natural production of vitamin D) and non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Although this may be caused in part by the fact that exposure to the sun suppresses immune function, it has been suggested that vitamin D might, under certain circumstances, turn from a protector to a promoter. Until this matter is resolved, your husband should not take additional vitamin D. He should consult with a knowledgeable physician.

Reference

  1. Armstrong BK, Kricker A. Sun exposure and non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev 2007;16(3):396-400.



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