San Antonio GI Doctor Recommends Caution When Altering Vitamin D Intake

Last updated: May 03, 2016 at 9:01am

In early July 2014, the Journal of Clinical Oncology published an article about colorectal cancer that our San Antonio GI doctor found interesting. It focused on a study that was completed in the United Kingdom earlier this year. Although more research is certainly needed, the study indicated that vitamin D consumption may improve some cancer patients’ outcomes.

This begs the question, “Should people who have colorectal cancer, or are at risk for developing it, increase their vitamin D intake?” Dr. Seema A. Dar may be able to help patients find the right answer. There is a blood test that may be ordered to help determine whether or not a patient’s vitamin D levels are where they should be. Plus, a comprehensive exam and review of the patient’s diet will provide clues too.

It is important that the person’s vitamin D levels are determined before making a dietary change because of the repercussions involved. That’s because too much vitamin D in a person’s system may be toxic and too little may lead to other health problems. The list of health problems that may occur as a result of a vitamin D imbalance includes, but is not confined to gastrointestinal distress, muscle pain, fatigue, mental confusion and excessive thirst.

So it stands to reason that one of a San Antonio GI doctor’s goals should be to get the patients’ vitamin D levels just right. If an increase in vitamin D is needed, San Antonio gastroenterologists may suggest that patients try altering their diets first before turning to artificial supplements. Foods that tend to contain the essential vitamin are canned tuna fish, calf liver, salmon, dairy products and fortified mushrooms.

To learn more about the role of vitamins in the care of colorectal cancer patients, please contact San Antonio Gastroenterologist, Dr. Seema A. Dar. Dr. Dar is presently scheduling new colorectal cancer patients for weekday appointments.