The study was conducted by researchers at University of Edinburgh who analyzed the blood samples of nearly 1,600 patients who underwent surgery after being diagnosed with bowel cancer. The researchers found that three in four bowel cancer patients who had the highest levels of vitamin D in their blood were still alive five years after the surgery compared to less than two thirds among those with lowest levels.
The researchers added that biggest beneficiaries of high levels of vitamin D were those with stage 2 disease.
"Our findings are promising but it is important to note that this is an observational study. We need carefully designed randomized clinical trials before we can confirm whether taking vitamin D supplements offers any survival benefit for bowel cancer patients", lead researcher Professor Malcolm Dunlop said.