Surprising New Research On Chocolate, Coffee, Vitamin D And Skin Cancer

What's contributing to high levels of vitamin D? Could it be the sun?: image via's contributing to high levels of vitamin D? Could it be the sun?: image via's good news and bad news in three of the most recent studies on protecting your skin from sun damage and possible skin cancer. One study, in particular, may cause some concern among those with high levels of vitamin D....

No question, a preponderance of research shows that Vitamin D is essential for good heath, strong bones, balanced blood levels, and that it helps to prevent and fight various cancers, including breast, ovarian, prostate, and colorectal cancers.


First The Bad News

But researchers at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, found that the risk of nonmelanoma skin cancers (NMSC) increases among those with higher blood levels of vitamin D. The most common NMSCs are basal cell and squamous cell carcinoma (Some earlier research indicated that vitamin D might even reduce the risk of basal cell carcinoma.)

Whether the higher levels of vitamin D in the Henry Ford Hospital study were produced by sun exposure to xray, UVB, or D supplements was not determined, however, and unfortunately, the primary contributor to high levels of D in the blood, may be difficult to determine.  Naturally, further research is needed.


The Good News

Dietary sources of vitamin DDietary sources of vitamin DThe good news within the bad news about D levels and NMSCs is that there was no distinction in the Henry Ford study regarding the source of the Vitamin D.  It could have come from too much sun exposure; according to the National Cancer Institute, sunlight-induced skin cancer is the most prevalent cancer in the United States with more than 1 million new cases each year. The good news is that we probably should continue to proceed cautiously and protectively in our sun-exposed activities, but until more specific evidence against nutritional intake of vitamin D is available, we should not forsake a diet rich in vitamin D or vitamin D supplements that are likely protecting us in other ways.

Optimal blood levels of vitamin D are between 50 and 80 ng/ml; you can obtain your blood levels of vitamin D through a simple blood test. Because it is estimated that most of us are deficient in vitamin D and don't get enough of it in our diets, 1,000 IU of vitamin D supplement is generally recommended as a daily dose.

Then there's a study being conducted by the Laval University Institute of Nutraceuticals and Functional Foods in Quebec that hopes to corroborate the results of recent German and British researchers showing that eating at least 3 squares of dark chocolate per day will protect the skin from sun damage.


3 SQUARES (of chocolate, of course): image via tastykitchen.com3 SQUARES (of chocolate, of course): image via


The theory is that polyphenol antioxidants in chocolate increase blood flow to the skin that help protect against ultraviolet rays.  Only 60 volunteers are needed for the chocolate study; females between the ages of 25 and 65.  This may not be the easiest study to get into!

Also good news, especially for java fans.... Coffee drinking has been associated with lowering risk for several types of cancers, including skin cancer. Here's a study that suggests that smearing it on your skin might really inhibit the the ATR enzyme that is activated by UV light. 



Skin Food Green Coffee Sunscreen: image via cosmetic-candy.comSkin Food Green Coffee Sunscreen: image via


In experiments conducted at Rutgers University and the University of Washington. mice whose ATR was genetically reduced at the molecular level and 'regular' mice were exposed to intense UV rays.  The mice that were genetically altered grew 69 percent fewer tumors and 75 percent fewer invasive tumors than the regular mice. 

This led the researchers to conclude that ATR reduction prior to tumor development can be used to prevent and protect against skin cancer.  Coffee sunscreen!  Lather it on and drink it too. 

Hmm.  And coffee sunscreen is already available to import from Korea.  How about coffee and chocolate sunscreen?

sources: Medical Express (1) (2) (3), Archives of Dermatology, National Cancer Institute Fact Sheet



Aug 24, 2011
by Anonymous

Vitamin D is not the culprit in skin cancer!

An individual who is overexposed to sun will develop skin cancer as a result of ultraviolet light damage to sun-exposed skin cells. As an entirely separate result of the sun exposure, the same individual will acquire a higher level of Vitamin D since ultraviolet B rays trigger production of Vitamin D in the cholesterol layer just under the skin. The two effects have nothing to do with each other directly. The study should have addressed this issue explicitly. Anyone wishing to separate these two effects can use Vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol) supplements to safely raise their Vitamin D3 levels without as much sun exposure. We've all seen joggers wearing hats, dark glasses and gloves on a hot day; they are avoiding skin cancer. Unfortunately, unless they take Vitamin D3 supplements to acquire some vital Vitamin D3, they are going to die very young, not perhaps of skin cancer, but of some autoimmune disease like high blood pressure, diabetes, lupus, multiple sclerosis or congestive heart failure, or, of some cancer such as colon, breast, bone or lung cancer, all associated with low levels of Vitamin D3. What doses do you need to maintain good Vitamin D3 levels without sun exposure? Turns out it's a lot. 5,000 iu daily of Vitamin D3, available cheap from Wal-Mart, Costco, most drug and health food stores. If you have good medical insurance you can request a 25(OH)D blood test. The result you are looking for is 50 ng/ml, not 15 ng/ml as mentioned in this article. 50 ng/ml means your body has pretty much all the Vitamin D3 it needs in order to provide most of the desirable outcomes associated with high Vitamin D3 levels. Levels up to 100 ng/ml are acceptable. Levels lower than 30 ng/ml are not. Kaiser Permanente, a respected HMO, sets the normal range for Vitamin D3 levels at 30-100 ng/ml. You will gain years of life, simply by keeping your Vitamin D3 levels high. Make sure your calcium (1000 mg), magnesium (500 mg) and zinc (10 mg) levels get their daily minimums. These minerals are uploaded by Vitamin D3 and help Vitamin D3 carry out its work in the body. Eat a high-fiber diet, balance your bean and cereal proteins, avoiding meat when possible, get exercise (in the sun is great) and drink lots of water. Temperance and trust in God makes sense, too. God bless.

May 15, 2012
by goishylewis

Frankly speaking happy to

Frankly speaking happy to see such impressive and extraordinary thoughts to represent both good and bad  facts of chocolate,coffee and vitamin D.Loved the concept and specially the recherches active and extraordinary participation to give innovative ideas on such wonderful research.