Where you live in the world can have an effect on your prostate health.
Believe it or not, prostate cancer rates increase for those living in northern climates. Take a look at a map and move from southern latitudes to northern latitudes and you will see the numbers rising. This trend has been researched and proven in a recent study. The farther north you live, the greater your risk.
What is the connection?
Scientists have linked ultraviolet light and vitamin D to a reduced risk of prostate cancer. Dr. G. Schwartz and researchers analyzed the cancer mortality data for a group of men over a 45-year period. What he and his team found was that the distribution of prostate cancer mortality is related to the amount of UV radiation.
Your body needs UV radiation to trigger vitamin D synthesis in your skin.
Vitamin D helps protect against prostate cancer growth. Vitamin D is able to attach to the receptors of cancerous cells and stop them from multiplying. And vitamin D can help with prostate swelling, too.
Vitamin D also helps your body absorb calcium. Calcium and phosphorus keep your bones strong, and protect against osteoporosis.
The best source of Vitamin D is the sun. Ten to fifteen minutes of sun exposure at least two times a week to your face, arms, hands, or back is enough to give you a healthy dose of vitamin D. Be aware, however, that this exposure can be affected by a number of different things. Don’t wear sunscreen during your ten- to fifteen-minute sessions. Put it on afterwards.
And remember that sunlight exposure during winter is less effective. For example, sun exposure during November through February in Boston won’t give you enough vitamin D. Cloud cover, time of day, and smog also affect your absorption of UV rays.
Many foods are fortified with vitamin D. In the 1930s rickets was a common health problem, so the U.S. government began fortifying milk. The practice has continued today. Some cereals are also fortified with vitamin D — check the label. Other food sources of vitamin D are:
— Cod liver oil (the best source) — Salmon — Mackerel — Tuna — Sardines