Gastric cancerIntroduction

Keeping serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D] levels above 40-60 ng/mL (100 nmol/L) might reduce risk by 25-35% and increase survival after diagnosis.

Gastric cancer is one of the approximately 20 vitamin D-sensitive types of cancer. Evidence from ecological (geographical) studies of gastric cancer mortality rates finds lower rates in areas where people have more exposure to solar ultraviolet B (UVB) radiation.

The most important risk factor for gastric cancer is Helicobacter pylori infection, with diet also playing an important role1 2 3.

“High intake of salted, pickled or smoked foods, as well as dried fish and meat and refined carbohydrates significantly increased the risk of developing GC while fibers, fresh vegetables and fruit were found to be inversely associated with GC risk1.” 

Calcium intake also seems to reduce risk4 5

Page last edited: 22 August 2011


  1. Compare, D. Rocco, A. Nardone, G. Risk factors in gastric cancer. Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci. 2010 Apr; 14 (4): 302-8.
  2. Hellstrom, P. M. This year's Nobel Prize to gastroenterology: Robin Warren and Barry Marshall awarded for their discovery of Helicobacter pylori as pathogen in the gastrointestinal tract. World J Gastroenterol. 2006 May 21; 12 (19): 3126-7.
  3. Marshall, B. J. Warren, J. R. Unidentified curved bacilli in the stomach of patients with gastritis and peptic ulceration. Lancet. 1984 Jun 16; 1 (8390): 1311-5.
  4. Peterlik, M. Grant, W. B. Cross, H. S. Calcium, vitamin D and cancer. Anticancer Res. 2009 Sep; 29 (9): 3687-98.
  5. Yang, C. Y. Cheng, M. F. Tsai, S. S. Hsieh, Y. L. Calcium, magnesium, and nitrate in drinking water and gastric cancer mortality. Jpn J Cancer Res. 1998 Feb; 89 (2): 124-30.