Photo : Tawny Willoughby | Facebook
A recent study in Australia revealed that people who took vitamin B3 for a period of one year, had a 23 percent lower rate of developing skin cancer than those who took the placebo.
The study involved 386 people who had experienced at least two cancers within the last five years. 500 mg was ingested twice a day for one year.
Another conclusion from the same study noted that the rate of precancers were also reduced by 20 percent after just 9 months.
Although the most dangerous, deadly cancer-melanoma was not included in the study. Squamous and basal cell, (the most common skin cancers) were the focus, because they are the most common. Over 3 million cases are diagnosed in the United States alone, each year.
While these cancers are rarely fatal, they are extremely persistent and often reoccur. The treatments include freezing, surgery and/or radiation.
According to Dr. Richard Schilsky, chief medical officer of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, an organization of cancer specialists, the vitamin, called nicotinamide may offer an opportunity to reduce the risk of both squamous and basal cell carcinomas.
It is believed that nicotinamide repairs DNA in cells damaged by sun exposure. It is unlike niacin and other forms of B3, which have side effects, some of which are severe. These side effects were not seen in this form of B3.
Researchers are not recommending vitamin consumption for people who have not been diagnosed with these cancers. Up till now vitamins have not been found helpful in cancer prevention and a recent study indicated that consuming excessive doses of vitamins can actually be harmful.
Adequate sunblock and avoiding overexposure to the sun are the best ways to protect yourself from developing these types of cancers.
The results of this study were revealed right on the heels of a social media, viral picture of a nurse who is fighting skin cancer. Tawny Willoughby, 27 years old, used a tanning bed while in high school several times a week. She is now battling skin cancer and wants to show the world the dangers of this horrible disease. She has been diagnosed with squamous cell carcinoma once and basal cell five times.
"If anyone needs a little motivation to not lay in the tanning bed and sun here ya go! This is what skin cancer treatment can look like. Wear sunscreen and get a spray tan. You only get one skin and you should take care of it," Says Willoughby.
Her picture has been shared 60,000 times since April 25.
She also stated "I truly hoped to change at least one persons view on tanning/skincare/sunscreen by posting my treatment photo and now I can't believe how many people it has touched. This is ridiculous to even have to say, but I've gotten so many comments and messages today I am having a hard time keeping up,"
Every year over 419,000 cases of skin cancer are diagnosed, including melanoma and non-melanoma are linked to indoor tanning beds.
May is Skin Cancer Awareness month. Please share this post in the hopes that it saves one person from falling prey to skin cancer.
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