Prostate cancer is the most common cancer occurring in Australian men. According to Cancer Australia, prostate cancer accounted for 30% of newly diagnosed cancers among men in 2010.
While prostate cancer treatment is available, and many men live with the disease for a long period of time without suffering any adverse effects, there are ways that you can potentially lower your risk of getting prostate cancer.
The latest study
According to a New York University study published in the journal Cancer Causes & Control in January, there are two simple things that may potentially decrease not only your risk of prostate cancer, but of a number of other obesity-related cancers as well.
The study involved almost 3,000 people in America, and analysed medical and diet data from these people over a long period of time, between 1991 and 2008.
The study found that eating more fruit, vegetables and legumes, and lowering alcohol consumption, are associated with reducing the risk of many cancers.
Niyati Parekh, the senior author of the study and associate professor of nutrition and public health at New York University Steinhardt, said: “Based on the study’s results, dietary advice on preventing cancer should emphasise the importance of eating a plant-based diet and restricting alcohol consumption.”
Eat your vegies
The benefits of eating more vegetables are often touted widely. The study in Cancer Causes & Control is just one among many that have found eating more vegetables can contribute to overall health, and therefore potentially lower the risk of obesity-related cancers.
So how many vegetables do you need to consume? According to Australian Government dietary guidelines, men are recommended to eat between five to six serves of vegetables per day, depending on their age. Those over 70 may require slightly less than those under the age of 50. A standard serve of vegetables is about 75 grams.
Decrease alcohol intake
While you’re increasing your vegetable intake, try reducing how much alcohol you drink as well. The study recommended that men restrict their alcohol consumption to two drinks per day.
While there is a range of prostate cancer treatments available, from surgery to radiation and hormone therapy depending on the severity of the cancer, it makes sense to reduce your risk of cancer as much as possible. Making some dietary changes may not only lower your risk of cancer, they can also have numerous other positive effects on your general health.