Vitamin D levels should be of particular interest to CLL patients, given the frequently self reported improvement in energy levels and possibly a reduction in the severity and length of illnesses, when boosting them, as opposed to increased risk of us developing skin cancers if we generate our Vitamin D in the sun.
Terry Slevin*, discusses the benefits and harms of ultraviolet radiation, how much is enough, how many of us struggle to get enough and what we should do to get enough sun exposure while minimising our risk of skin cancer here:
While CLL is not mentioned, I was interested to read that "a recently published paper suggested sun exposure might help reduce blood pressure and influence heart disease risk. But not through vitamin D." ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/?te...
While Australia has just welcomed summer, this article should also be of interest where people are lucky to experience a pale winter sun. Obviously the 5 minutes exposure may need to be increased if you live where the sun is less intense or often hidden by cloud.
The section whether there are any adverse health effects for people who don't quite get enough vitamin D is also of interest, but we'll need to wait for the results from the Mayo Clininc study before we know the best recommendations for those of us with CLL.
* Terry Slevin is the Honorary Senior Lecturer in Public Health at Curtin University; Education & Research Director, Cancer Council WA; Chair of the Occupational and Environmental Cancer Committee at Cancer Council Australia
Photo: Plenty of UV in this sea side photo.