Anticancer vitamins: Essential adjuvants to nutrition therapy

Anticancer vitamins: Essential adjuvants to nutrition therapy

Today cancer has become a major health concern with increasing mortality levels each year. Researchers developed various effective strategies to prevent, manage and treat this deadly disease.

Pattern oncological treatments like surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy have led to significant improvements in cancer prevention. However, scientists still seek to develop more innovative therapies which can improve the effectiveness and safety of present cancer interventions.


-Micronutrients in cancer management
-Importance of vitamins in Oncology
-What are vitamins?
-Anticancer vitamins for cancer management

In recent years, promising complementary therapies including micronutrients such as vitamins has been considerably assessed for their potential chemopreventive properties. These assessments exhibit significant improvements in cancer management.


Micronutrients in cancer management

The healing process and treatment success in people with cancer are significantly affected by the nutritional state of the patient. According to recorded data, cancer patients who are malnourished or took deficient diets exhibited higher mortality and morbidity rate. Therefore, it is very essential to have a nutritional diet embedded with micro and macronutrients.

As per assessments done by recent studies, it is found that cancer patients showed considerable improvement in the patient compliance, treatment tolerability and reduction in the rate of discontinuation of treatment with the intake of micronutrients like vitamin D, vitamin E, or selenium in the adequate levels.

Therefore, it can be said that micronutrients play a vital role in cancer treatment.

Importance of vitamins in oncology

One of such micronutrients is vitamins. Vitamins show a significant connection with cancer treatment. These are potent antioxidants, which have considerable antiangiogenesis, inhibitory and apoptotic properties for fighting against cancer cell lines.

What are vitamins?

As we read ahead, these are essential micronutrients, required by our body for certain physiological and biochemical body functions. The word vitamin formed of two words: vital plus amine i.e. essential compounds needed for normal growth and maintenance of the body.

Their potential functions make them an area of contemplation for scientists. Various researches already have been taken and certain is going on.

Let's take a deep look at vitamins' role in cancer prevention.

Anticancer vitamins for cancer management


Pro-vitamin A

β-Carotene is from those carotenoids which contain pro-vitamin A activity. It works in many ways to reduces the risk of cancer.

It helps to compensate for localized retinol deficiencies rapidly, which might be stimulated by carcinogens.

It neutralizes the free radicals by its antioxidant property.
It also exhibits immunomodulatory effect.
With all these actions, vitamin A shows significant anti-cancer activity against various cancer cell lines, for instance, lung, prostate, melanoma and various carcinoma.

Dietary sources of vitamin A: Carrot, leafy vegetables, fish liver oil, mangoes, and papaya.

Vitamin C

With significant antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, vitamin C might have a positive impact on the quality of life, clinical response and overall survival of cancer patients.

According to a report, out of 46 epidemiological studies computed the dietary vitamin C index, 33 studies found with statistically remarkable prevention. For carcinoma of lung, larynx, oral cavity, oesophagus, cervix and colon, the evidence was robust and consistent.

So, also include this vitamin in your diet to reduce the risk of cancer.
Sources: lemon, oranges, broccoli, kiwi, papaya and grapefruit etc.

Vitamin D
This vitamin involves apoptosis, immune modulation and cell growth regulation.

Epidemiological studies also show evidence regarding the positive impact of vitamin D on cancer management. As per these studies, the populations who are living in geographical regions with less solar UV-B sun rays, known to exhibit higher incidence rates of few cancers. Sunlight is known to be a delivery agent for vitamin D. This light is essential for the cutaneous synthesis of vitamin D. This sunlight-vitamin D connection has been intended for many cancers, for instance, prostate, breast and colorectal. Therefore, dietary supplementation of vitamin D is very essential to accomplish this deficiency.

Vitamin E
In research analysis, the lower intake of this vitamin is considerably associated with enhanced risk of cancer and its supplementation results into significant beneficial effects. Along with these, this vitamin also improves the immunity of the concerned person.
It is a very important vitamin, especially in the initial stages of carcinogenesis. It is also considered as a blocker of nitrosamine synthesis, which is a carcinogenic compound.
Sources: Nuts like almonds or peanuts and vegetable oils like sunflower, cottonseed, palm or wheat germ.

Vitamin K2
Vitamin K2 is also a potential vitamin which positively helps to impede the growth of cancer and tends to reduce the side effect of chemotherapeutics.
Sources: Egg yolk, blue cheese, hard cheese, fermented soy, dark chicken meat and pork.

These are the essential anti-cancer vitamins, which can help to reduce the risk of cancer, its prevention and treatment. It is now determined that vitamins are not only essential for other body parts but also required to tackle the problem of cancer.

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