The Healing Sun by Richard Hobday presents evidence showing an increase in disease with a decrease in sunlight exposure. This article discusses the relationship of: Colon Cancer and The Sun
How Sunlight Can Prevent Serious Health Problems
by Richard Hobday, taken from his book, The Healing Sun
Colon Cancer and The Sun
With health campaigns warning against sunbathing because of the risks of developing cancer it easy to see why the cancer inhibiting properties of sunlight have been largely overlooked. Certainly, there has been little support for the hypothesis that sunlight inhibits the development of internal cancers from mainstream cancer researchers. This is not altogether surprising given the slowness with which the association between rickets and sunlight came to be accepted by much of the medical establishment.
During the 18th and 19th centuries, rickets occurred mostly at latitudes of 37 degrees or higher, in towns and cities where air pollution reduced the amount of sunlight that would otherwise have been available. There are some striking parallels between rickets and cancer of the colon, in that almost all western countries at latitudes north of 37 degrees in the northern hemisphere, or south of that latitude in the southern hemisphere, have high rates of colon cancer. It is the second leading cause of death from cancer, after lung cancer, in the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, Ireland and New Zealand and, as was the case with rickets, the problem is worse in areas with high levels of air pollution.
The first epidemiological research suggesting that vitamin D from sun exposure has a protective effect against colon cancer was published in the International Journal of Epidemiology in 1 980 by Drs Frank and Cedric Garland (see Table 3). They looked at the geographic distribution of cancer deaths in the United States and found that mortality from colon cancer decreased in areas of the United States with greater sun exposure, the number of deaths in the industrialized northeast of the United States being one third higher than in sunnier regions such as Hawaii, New Mexico and Arizona. Migration to a sunny latitude — from, say, New York to Florida — is associated with a decreased risk of colon cancer. Also, a childhood and adolescence spent in one of the world’s sunnier regions reduces the risk of the disease for those who migrate in the opposite direction, and the protective effect appears to last a lifetime.
|Country||Latitude (°) I||Death rate per 100,000 population|
|Republic of Ireland||53||16.6|
|England and Wales||52||15.3|
|New Hampshire, USA||44||11.5|
|New York, USA||43||12.4|
|Rhode Island, USA||42||12.2|
|New Jersey, USA||40||12.9|
|New Mexico, USA||34||9.1|
|Annual Age-Adjusted Death Rates from Colon Cancer per 100,000 Population by Latitude of Residence for Women in Selected Areas, 1986-1990. After Garland, C.F., Garland, F.C., and Gorham, E.D., ‘Epidemiology of Cancer Risk and Vitamin D’ inVitamin D: Molecular Biology, Physiology, and Clinical Applications, (Ed. Holick, M.F.), Humana Press, New Jersey, 1999|
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