Ultraviolet: Go into the Light

Ultraviolet light is kind of a big deal and way more essential to health than you might think. Here’s Dr. Fuhrman on the subject. Have a look:
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that your body makes after exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays from the sun. Vitamin D functions as a hormone because it sends a message to the intestines to increase the absorption of calcium and phosphorus…


…Sun exposure is perhaps the most important source of vitamin D because exposure to sunlight provides most humans with their vitamin D requirement. The further you live from the equator, the longer you need to be exposed to the sun in order to generate vitamin D.
Now check out this research on UV light. Apparently it offers a “double whammy” against cancer. Michael Kahn of Reuters reports:
Using ultraviolet light may one day offer a "double whammy" to kill cancer cells by better focusing antibody-based drugs and triggering the body's own defenses to eliminate tumors, researchers said on Tuesday.


In two studies with mice, a British team cloaked antibodies -- the immune system proteins that tag germs and cancer cells for elimination -- with an organic oil that blocked them from reacting until illuminated with ultraviolet light.

The researchers used engineered immune system proteins called monoclonal antibodies. They are made to home in on proteins known to be overactive in tumor cells.

When the light unblocked the organic coating, the antibodies switched on and attracted killer T-cells to attack the tumor, said Colin Self, a researcher at Newcastle University, who led the studies.
Pretty cool information. Kind of knew this already. Remember this quote from Dr. Fuhrman? Here it is again:
In addition to its significant cancer-protective effects, recent studies demonstrate that vitamin D also can inhibit the growth of existing breast and prostate cancer cells. Likewise, it helps inhibit the progression and metastasis of a wide spectrum of cancers, suggesting therapeutic value in the treatment of those who already have cancer.1
Got to love the UV-vitamin D link!
1. O’Kelly J, Koeffer HP. Vitamin D analogs and breast cancer. Recent Results Cancer Res 2003;164:333-48. Giovannucci E. The epidemiology of vitamin D and cancer incidence and mortality: a review. Cancer Causes Control 2005; 16(2):83-95.
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