Calcium Protects You from Colon Cancer

June 16, 2004

A new study shows that taking 1,200mg of calcium daily in supplement form decreased the risk of developing advanced colon polyps - the type more likely to change into colon cancer, by 35%. Calcium supplementation reduced the risk of all polyps by 14% and reduced the risk of non-cancerous polyps by 18%. The study included 913 patients with an average age of 61, followed for at least 4 years. Each participant had a polyp removed at least 3 years before the study. The study is in the June 16th issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

Commentary by Jerry Hickey, R.Ph.

In a recent study in this same journal 803 colon cancer survivors were significantly less likely to develop a relapse of colon cancer if they took calcium supplements and also were rich in vitamin D.

How does the Red Wine Antioxidant, Resveratrol, Decrease the Risk of Cancer?

The possible way Resveratrol decreases cancer is by blocking a key protein in the body that feeds cancer essentially starving the cancer cells. The chemical, NK-kB, is responsible for cell survival. Cancer cells treated with Resveratrol became more sensitive to an immune system agent called TNF-alpha. This caused the cancer cells to loose their "immortality" and they self-destructed. The findings were published on the online edition of the European Molecular Biology Organization.

Commentary by Jerry Hickey, R.Ph.

Resveratrol is the antioxidant largely responsible for red wines health benefits. This interaction may be one reason why Resveratrol helps control heart disease, atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), arthritis and autoimmune disorders