(Health Secrets) People with high levels of Vitamin B in their blood have a far lower risk of developing lung cancer than people with low levels of Vitamin B, regardless of whether they smoke or not, according to recently released European research.
Although further trials are required to clarify the findings, Dr. Mitrou of the World Cancer Research Fund believes “These findings are really exciting as they are important for understanding the process of lung cancer and could have implications for prevention.”
What does the study show?
The study by the International Agency for Research on Cancer followed around 400,000 people in ten European countries over the course of eight years, and saw that the likelihood of developing a lung tumor was dramatically reduced in those that had the highest levels of Vitamin B6 and the amino acid methionine in their blood.
The study included participants who were current smokers, who used to smoke, and who had never smoked, but it appeared that their smoking status didn’t have an impact on the effect of Vitamin B levels on their lung cancer risk.
Over eight years and out of 400,000 people:
- 899 developed lung cancer
- 129 with the highest levels of Vitamin B developed lung cancer
- 408 with the lowest levels of Vitamin B developed lung cancer
These results would appear to suggest that people with high levels of Vitamin B in the blood are far less likely to develop lung cancer that those with low levels of Vitamin B. This indicates that eating a diet high in Vitamin B, or taking Vitamin B supplements could be a positive step in lung cancer protection.
However, researchers urge caution in interpreting the results, suggesting that high levels of Vitamin B may simply be an indicator of a healthier lifestyle, which in general would lead to a reduced risk of lung cancer. Further research is required to determine whether taking Vitamin B supplements can protect against lung cancer without other major lifestyle changes such as giving up smoking.
Says lead researcher Dr Brennan, “If further research does confirm our findings then the next step would be to identify the optimum B-vitamin levels for reducing future cancer risk.”
How Can I Increase Vitamin B Levels?
Vitamin B6, also known as pyridoxine, performs vital functions within the body. It is necessary to turn food into energy, and to produce hemoglobin which carries oxygen in the blood. Vitamin B6 deficiency can lead to problems with the skin and nerves.
Many foods are rich in Vitamin B6 including pork, poultry, cod, eggs, wholegrain foods such as oatmeal, vegetables, milk, bananas and potatoes. Try to eat fresh food where possible, as storing, canning, freezing and even cooking food can result in reduced levels of Vitamin B6.
Alternatively you can boost your Vitamin B levels by using a dietary supplement. The best comes in the form of a sublingual lozenge that delivers Vitamin B right into the blood stream so it isn’t destroyed by the digestive system.
Supplementing with Vitamin B provides many additional health benefits. Overall this dietary supplement can increase energy levels, improve memory function, reduce risk of cardiovascular disease, protect against Alzheimer’s, and provide relief from B12 anemia.
While the B vitamins are essential for good health, it’s good to remember that B6 is excreted within eight hours of ingestion and, like other B vitamins, needs to be replaced by consuming whole foods or using a supplement. Requirements increase when a high protein diet is consumed, according to Earl Mindell’s Vitamin Bible. B6 must be present for the production of antibodies and red blood cells.
There is some indication that B6 can be synthesized by intestinal bacteria, making a vegetable diet, supplemented with cellulose for the bacteria to feed on, the optimal diet choice. This also means that anything that compromises the intestinal bacteria will also compromise production of B6. Intestinal bacteria is destroyed by antibiotics, pesticides, chemicals in processed foods, and chlorine used in water treatment. When intestinal bacteria are not at full strength, a vitamin B supplement is especially important.
Vitamin B6 is required for the absorption of B12, the vitamin that energizes the body. It is needed for the production of hydrochloric acid, making a supplement essential for older people who have difficulty with digestion. B6 is also necessary to achieve adequate levels of magnesium, the master mineral.