Diet and Prostate Cancer: Preventative Care

Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer found in American men, according to the American Cancer Society.

Staying knowledgeable on the basics of this disease and making healthy choices are the best forms of defense. A great place to start is by maintaining a healthy diet. Below is a list of eating habits to incorporate into your daily routine to help prevent cancer and improve your overall health.

  • Eat primarily plant-based foods
  • Include plenty of fruits and veggies
  • High-fiber foods
  • Low-fat foods
  • Limited in the amount of simple sugars

What you consume on a daily basis can affect your future risk level for this and other serious diseases. While research continues, several studies have found that eating a plant-based diet is the best choice for men with prostate cancer. Eating foods such as soy, fruits and vegetables can help slow the growth of tumors or reduce your overall risk of developing the disease. Meanwhile, eating foods high in fat, like processed meats, has been linked to an increase in prostate cancer risk.

A healthy diet alone will not cure or completely eliminate the risk of prostate cancer. Other habits and behaviors can be modified to reduce controllable risk factors:

  • Reduce or eliminate alcohol consumption.
  • Avoid cigarettes and other tobacco products.
  • Stay active. Find an activity you enjoy and make it apart of your everyday routine. Some good options are walking, swimming and lifting weights.
  • Maintain a healthy weight.
  • Talk with your doctor about screening. It’s important to make the decision after an in-depth discussion of risks and benefits, and how they apply to you specifically.
  • Learn about your family health history. A man’s risk doubles if he has a first-degree relative (father or brother) with prostate cancer.

Overall, early detection and making healthy choices are the best forms of prevention when it comes to prostate cancer. Start by making small changes to your eating habits and work your way into a routine that makes healthy eating an instinct.

“There is plenty of strong evidence that good nutrition and an active lifestyle can reduce the likelihood of prostate cancer and slow its progression,” says Mitchell Sokoloff M.D., Chairman of Urology at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. – via Prostate Cancer Foundation

For more information about prostate cancer, visit Infirmary Health’s Cancer Care page.

Sources:

American Cancer Society: “Key Statistics for Prostate Cancer”

Nature: Scientific Journal: “Prostate Cancer and Prostatic Diseases” 8, 304-310 (2005) G. A. Sonn, W. Aronson & M. S. Litwin

Prostate Cancer Foundation: “Five Foods to Protect Your Prostate”