Pro­tect Your Prostate

PROSTATE CAN­CER IS ONE OF THE MOST COM­MON FORMS OF CAN­CER FOUND IN MEN. HERE’S WHAT YOU CAN DO TO RE­DUCE YOUR RISK.

Men's Health (Singapore) - - HEALTH -

For lots of men, the thought of get­ting prostate can­cer can be ter­ri­fy­ing. Aside from skin can­cer, it is the most com­mon form of can­cer found in guys, ac­cord­ing to the Amer­i­can Can­cer So­ci­ety, and this year alone, an es­ti­mated 164,690 guys will be di­ag­nosed with prostate can­cer. Men older than 50 are more likely to be di­ag­nosed with prostate can­cer.

It’s im­por­tant to note that prostate can­cer isn’t nec­es­sar­ily a death sen­tence: when caught early (i.e., be­fore it has a chance to spread to other parts of the body), the 5-year sur­vival rate is ex­tremely high at 98 per­cent. But there are things you can do to sig­nif­i­cantly re­duce your risk.

1) EAT LESS MEAT AND DAIRY

Stud­ies have shown that men who eat foods high in an­i­mal fat, such as dairy and red meat, were more likely to de­velop prostate can­cer. It’s im­por­tant to note that these stud­ies do not show that fat­ten­ing foods ac­tu­ally cause prostate can­cer; rather, they show there is a cor­re­la­tion be­tween prostate can­cer and con­sum­ing things like cheese or ba­con. Nonethe­less, on­col­o­gist Dr. David Wise of the Perl­mut­ter Can­cer Cen­ter at NYU Lan­gone ad­vises pa­tients to err on the side of cau­tion and get most of their fat from av­o­ca­dos and nuts over an­i­mal prod­ucts.

2) EAT YOUR BROC­COLI

In terms of can­cer-fight­ing foods, Wise says, “cru­cif­er­ous veg­eta­bles re­ally seem to keep pop­ping out” as the most effective. These types of veg­eta­bles in­clude broc­coli and cau­li­flower, which con­tain a nat­u­ral chem­i­cal that may pre­vent can­cer from grow­ing. Ac­cord­ing to Wise, this chem­i­cal is harm­ful to can­cer cells but per­fectly fine for other cells in our body. He says the ev­i­dence for eat­ing cru­cif­er­ous veg­eta­bles is the strong­est in terms of prostate can­cer-fight­ing foods.

3) DON’T SMOKE

“Smok­ing is not just linked to lung can­cer. It’s also linked to prostate can­cer,” Wise says. In par­tic­u­lar, smok­ing is linked to ag­gres­sive forms of prostate can­cer that are more likely to spread, he says. What’s more, a re­view of 24 stud­ies look­ing at prostate can­cer risk and smok­ing pub­lished in 2010 de­ter­mined that guys who smoked the most had a 24 to 30 per­cent higher risk of dy­ing from prostate can­cer than non-smok­ers, due to the more ag­gres­sive tu­mours as­so­ci­ated with smok­ing. So do your­self a favour and quit to­day.

4) AVOID TAK­ING VI­TA­MIN E SUP­PLE­MENTS

We typ­i­cally think of vi­ta­mins as good things, but a 2014 study pub­lished in the Jour­nal of the Na­tional Can­cer In­sti­tute found that tak­ing too much vi­ta­min E may in­crease risk of ag­gres­sive prostate can­cer. As long as you’re get­ting 15 mg of vi­ta­min E a day from your diet, ac­cord­ing to the Na­tional In­sti­tute of Health, you don’t need to take any ad­di­tional sup­ple­ments. Sup­ple­ment­ing “be­yond what we would have in our nor­mal diet would be a bad idea,” says Wise.

5) EJAC­U­LATE REG­U­LARLY

As if plea­sur­ing your­self didn’t al­ready pro­vide enough of a pay­off, an Aus­tralian study found that DIY sex may help pre­vent prostate can­cer. The study of 2,338 men showed that guys who did it five or more times a week were 34 per­cent less likely to de­velop prostate can­cer by age 70 than those who plea­sured them­selves less of­ten.

“Sem­i­nal fluid con­tains sub­stances that are car­cino­genic,” Graham Giles, Ph.D., the lead study au­thor, told Men’s Health. “Reg­u­lar ejac­u­la­tion may help flush them out.”

And in case you’re won­der­ing, yes, straight-up sex works, too.

6) HAVE SAFE SEX

Speak­ing of sex, us­ing pro­tec­tion may lower your chances of de­vel­op­ing prostate can­cer. Sex­u­ally trans­mit­ted in­fec­tions like cy­tomegalovirus and tri­chomo­ni­a­sis have been linked to prostate can­cer. The first is a type of her­pes found in can­cer­ous prostate tis­sue. Tri­chomo­ni­a­sis, on the other hand, is a treat­able virus that may have long-term ef­fects. A study pub­lished in Can­cer Epi­demi­ol­ogy Biomark­ers & Pre­ven­tion found that guys who were ever in­fected with tri­chomo­ni­a­sis had a 40 per­cent greater chance of de­vel­op­ing prostate can­cer.

7) LOSE WEIGHT

Years of re­search clearly shows that ex­tra body weight is as­so­ci­ated with an in­creased can­cer risk, in­clude ag­gres­sive forms of prostate can­cer, writes the Amer­i­can Can­cer So­ci­ety. It’s not clear why ex­cess fat is linked with can­cer, but re­searchers the­o­rize it may be be­cause lev­els of cer­tain hor­mones, e.g., in­sulin, oe­stro­gen and an­dro­gen, are re­duced when peo­ple are at a healthy weight. The Na­tional In­sti­tute of Health’s Body Mass In­dex cal­cu­la­tor can de­ter­mine if you’re con­sid­ered over­weight or obese.

8) EX­ER­CISE

Re­search shows that stay­ing ac­tive might pre­vent prostate can­cer. In fact, Wise be­lieves ex­er­cise and main­tain­ing a healthy weight are the two sin­gle-best ways to re­duce your prostate can­cer risk. “I think that time, en­ergy and funds should be in­vested into get­ting into healthy weight and get­ting onto an ex­er­cise pro­gram,” he says.

How much should you work out?

“About two and a half hours of mod­er­ate ex­er­cise or about an hour and fif­teen min­utes a week of very in­tense ex­er­cise would be the min­i­mum,” Wise rec­om­mends.

YOU DON’T NEED TO TAKE ANY AD­DI­TIONAL SUP­PLE­MENTS. SUP­PLE­MENT­ING BE­YOND WHAT WE WOULD HAVE IN OUR NOR­MAL DIET WOULD BE A BAD IDEA

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Singapore

© PressReader. All rights reserved.