Researchers have found a clear association between low exposure to sunlight and the incidence of endometrial cancer. Reviewing data on endometrial cancer, researchers at the Moores Cancer Center at the University of California at San Diego, found that endometrial cancer rates were highest in the highest latitudes in both hemispheres.
Exposure to sunlight, specifically UVB rays, cause the body to make Vitamin D3 which has previously been linked to lower risks of breast, colon, kidney and ovarian cancer. The study indicates that Vitamin D3 levels are also important in preventing endometrial cancer.
"This is the first study, to our knowledge, to show that higher serum levels of vitamin D are associated with reduced risk of endometrial cancer," said Cedric F. Garland, Dr. P.H., professor of Family and Preventive Medicine in the UCSD School of Medicine, and member of the Moores UCSD Cancer Center. "Previous epidemiological studies have focused on estrogen levels either natural or through hormone replacement therapy which play the major role in development of the disease, and on fat intake, which plays a smaller role. Since most women cannot control their natural levels of estrogen, and very low levels of fat intake are not acceptable to most American women, this article provides evidence that vitamin D adequacy should be considered as part of a comprehensive program for prevention of this cancer."
The study is published in the November 16, 2007 issue of the journal, Preventative Medicine