One real downside of medical research is that too many important studies get published in obscure medical journals that few doctors read. Plus, the information often slips under the media’s radar.
With a topic as vital as preventing breast cancer, today we bring you this update:
• The herb black cohosh, popular for menopause symptoms, has definitely been shown to exert a protective effect in women when it comes to preventing breast cancer. Doctors from the University of Pennsylvania Department of Epidemiology analyzed data on more than 949 women with known breast cancer versus more than 1,500 women with no breast cancer. By tracking black cohosh use in both groups they concluded that black cohosh somehow protects a woman from developing breast cancer. The exact mechanism isn’t known, but they suspect the herb blocks excess estrogen. Black cohosh is also an excellent antioxidant.
• Vitamin D Researchers at the University of California San Diego published findings that finally tell us the best blood level of vitamin D needed to prevent breast cancer. Working with data on 1,720 women, those with vitamin D levels of 52 ng (nanograms) or more had half the risk of developing breast cancer as those with 13 ng or less.
To attain a level of 52 ng:
• Take 3,000 I.U. of vitamin D daily OR
• 2,000 I.U. vitamin D daily AND be in the sun for 12 minutes with your legs and arms exposed.
Here in Chicago, I’d suggest you aim for the higher dose. For convenience, you can take Metagenics Iso D3, one tablet per day.