How Micronutrients Benefit In Skin Cancer
As the summer approaches, we become more concerned with sun exposure and skin cancers. Basal cell carcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and melanoma are the most common forms of skin cancers, and malignant melanoma is the most fatal of them all. Worldwide, one in three people are diagnosed with cancers that are classified under skin cancers.
UV rays - an invisible kind of radiation that comes from the sun, but also tanning beds and sunlamps - can damage skin cells which can lead to cancer. Therefore, protection from UV rays is important all year, not just during the summer. In addition, exposure to chemical carcinogens through food and water, nutritional deficiencies, prolonged immunosuppression, and treatments such as chemotherapy, and radiotherapy, are also increasing the chance of developing skin cancers. Women younger than 50, are reported to have an increased risk of developing melanoma. In fact, melanoma is the second most common form of cancer in women under 30.
The most common risk factor of skin cancer, exposure to ultraviolet sunlight causes free radical damage in the skin cells leading to abrasive changes. Some nutrients such as Vitamin C and vitamin E are highly effective in reducing free radical damage. In addition, vitamin C helps to increase collagen (together with the amino acids lysine and proline), reduce oxidative stress, can correct skin damage caused by UV rays and inflammatory factors, and reduces the cancerous conversion of skin cells. Moreover, topical application of vitamin C is also known to strengthen the immune barrier offered by skin and antioxidant potential. Therefore, the scientists at the Dr. Rath Research Institute investigated the effects of antioxidant and anticancer properties of a specific micronutrient combination containing vitamin C, lysine, proline, green tea extract, and other micronutrients on skin cancer cells using in vitro and in vivo methods. These in vitro studies have already indicated that these micronutrients are effective in inhibiting the uncontrolled multiplication of cancer cells responsible for tumor growth as well as reducing their invading and metastatic potential by inhibiting matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) enzymes. These findings were confirmed in mouse models showing that dietary micronutrient supplementation substantially suppressed the growth of skin cancer cells and the development of tumors. If small tumors were discovered, they were well capsulated, indicating reduced potential of their spread.
Melanoma is the most feared skin cancer because of its aggressiveness and rapid spread to vital organs such as the heart, liver, kidneys, and brain. Our studies showed that specific micronutrient combinations could effectively reduce melanoma metastasis to the liver and spleen. Such consistent efficacy of this micronutrient combination in suppressing various metabolic routes of skin cancer and its metastasis indicates the natural control of cancer growth and spread is possible by targeting its various cellular mechanisms at once.
Therefore, in addition to protection from overexposure to the sun and other preventative measures, micronutrient supplementation should be considered as an important additional factor to reduce the chances of developing skin cancer.
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