The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog is intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at www.Vicus.com, a complementary and alternative medicine website.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

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  • Recent Comments

    Mechanisms underlying the actions of vitamin D

    Dr. Christine Gonzalez from Los Angeles, California, has written a thorough review of vitamin D.

    Let’s focus on the actions of vitamin D thought to contribute to disease prevention.

    Vitamin D effects

    • Cancer
      • Decreases spread of cells (proliferation) and increases cell differentiation
      • Stops the growth of new blood vessels
      • Significant anti-inflammatory effects
      • Studies suggest a link between low vitamin D levels and an increased risk of cancer, with the strongest evidence for colorectal cancer.
    • Heart disease
      • Evidence that the protective effect of vitamin D on the heart could be via the renin-angiotensin hormone system, through the suppression of inflammation, or directly on the cells of the heart and blood-vessel walls.
    • Fractures and falls
      • Vitamin D helps body absorb calcium.
      • Vitamin D receptors are located on the fast-twitch muscle fibers, which are the first to respond in a fall.
      • It’s theorized that vitamin D may increase muscle strength, thereby preventing falls.
    • Autoimmune diseases and influenza
      • Vitamin D has a role in regulating the immune system and a strong anti-inflammatory effect.
      • It’s theorized that vitamin D deficiency could contribute to autoimmune diseases such as multiple sclerosis, type 1 diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, and autoimmune thyroid disease.

    The bottom line?

    In the past few years, study after study has supported the importance of vitamin D in preventing and managing medical conditions, and the risks associated with inadequate blood levels.

    Dr. Gonzalez concludes, “As the number of people with vitamin D deficiency continues to increase, the importance of this hormone in overall health and the prevention of chronic diseases is at the forefront of research.

    1/17/11 20:34 JR

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