Prostate cancer prevention: What you can do

Prostate cancer prevention: What you can do

Prostate cancer prevention: What you can do

You can reduce the risk of prostate cancer by exercising regularly and eating a low-fat diet rich in fruits, vegetables and fish. Maintaining a healthy weight and lifestyle can help prevent prostate cancer and also other cancers and health conditions such as heart disease.

There’s no sure way to prevent prostate cancer ƒ{ but you can make some choices that might help reduce your risk. Prostate cancer is complicated; researchers are still trying to understand the full range of factors that cause it and to determine which prevention strategies are safe and the most effective.

Experts know that diet and lifestyle choices play a part in prostate cancer risk. However, some medications and supplements once thought to show promise in preventing prostate cancer have recently been found to be ineffective. Prevention trials are still ongoing and more research is needed in this area.

While any man can get prostate cancer, it’s most common in older men, men with a family history of prostate cancer and in black men. While age, genetics and race are factors you can’t change, there are some factors you can control.

Nutrition and prevention of prostate cancer

So far, research does not support definite nutritional guidelines for preventing prostate cancer. However, you can reasonably act on the following suggestions:

  • Don’t overeat. Eat moderate-sized portions and keep your kilojoules under control.
  • Avoid high-fat foods. Prostate cancer rates vary greatly from one country to another, with the highest rates appearing in countries where people tend to eat a lot of fat. A diet high in saturated fats (such as animal fats found in red meat) may pose the greatest risk.
  • Make healthy choices. Choose whole-grain foods, such as brown rice and whole-wheat bread. Limit sweets and salt.
  • Drink alcohol in moderation. Generally, this means no more than two drinks a day for men.
  • Eat a variety of fruits and vegetables. A diet high in fruits and vegetables has been linked to a lower risk of various kinds of cancer. Recent studies, however, cast doubt on the theory that lycopene ƒ{ an antioxidant found in tomatoes ƒ{ lowers prostate cancer risk. But don’t stop eating tomatoes. Eating plenty of all kinds of vegetables, including tomatoes, may help ward off prostate cancer and other cancers.
  • Eat foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids. While a diet high in most kinds of fat is linked to a higher risk of cancer and other health problems, there is an exception. Omega-3 fatty acids ƒ{ a type of fat found in cold-water fish such as salmon, herring and mackerel ƒ{ appear to reduce the risk of certain cancers.
  • Eat soy products and legumes. Soybeans and other legumes contain phytoestrogens, which are plant-based chemicals that behave like the hormone estrogen in the human body. These chemicals might help to prevent prostate cancer. In fact, one possible explanation for lower rates of prostate cancer in Asian men is that they eat more soy protein.
  • Drink green tea. Green tea contains antioxidants such as polyphenols that may help prevent certain cancers and other health problems.

Obesity and prostate cancer

Researchers have not established a direct link between obesity and the incidence of prostate cancer. However, obesity might affect levels of hormones related to prostate cancer risk.

Strategies for preventing obesity include:

  • Following guidelines for a healthy diet
  • Meeting with your doctor to develop a programme for physical activity
  • Doing some form of aerobic exercise for 30 minutes or more daily.

Our Employee Wellbeing Programme (EWP) is available 24 hours a day if you want to know more about the prevention of prostate cancer. Call us on the EWP number or email us at
var prefix = 'ma' + 'il' + 'to';
var path = 'hr' + 'ef' + '=';
var addy19649 = 'help' + '@';
addy19649 = addy19649 + 'lifeassist' + '.' + 'co' + '.' + 'za';
//–>n ]]><![CDATA[
]]>This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.