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For women who have had certain types of skin cancer, vitamin D testing may help predict their future risk of developing melanoma, according to a new report for the Institute of Medicine.
Researchers found that postmenopausal women who had previously had non-melanoma skin cancer who took vitamin D and calcium supplements for a period of seven years were 50 percent less likely to develop melanoma than women who did not take supplements. Additionally, women who had the lowest vitamin D test results were five times more likely to develop melanoma during the study period.
The researchers said that it is too early to say that the type of skin cancer and vitamin D levels are definitely connected. However, the association between the two matters is interesting and should warrant further investigation.
Currently, the U.S. Office of Dietary Supplementation recommends that adult women get between 400 and 600 international units of vitamin D every day. The nutrient is produced naturally in the skin following sun exposure but can also be found in fish, mushrooms and nutritional supplements.
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