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3 Active Ways To Reduce Prostate Cancer Risk

With the diagnosis of cancers on the rise it is even more vital to live a healthier lifestyle. That, coupled with getting regular check ups is important so that early detection can save your life. For International Men’s Day, celebrated on November 19th, we’ve highlighted three issues surrounding men’s health  focusing on prostate cancer, which is the second most common cancer among men after skin cancer.

The following are ways to reduce prostate cancer risk.

1. Get screened for cancer.

It’s highly recommended by most health experts that a man’s first prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test for prostate cancer should be done at 50; however, risk factors may determine otherwise.

2. Diet.

Apart from conforming to a general healthy lifestyle, there are certain foods that may contribute to lowering prostate cancer risk.

  • Not all fat is unhealthy. Essential Fatty acids like omega-3s and omega-6s are not made by the body, however, an average diet contains more omega-6s fatty acid than omega-3s fatty acid. Studies have shown that having a balance of both reduces the growth of prostate cancer. Rich sources of omega-3s include salmon, sardines, tuna and herring. Taking fish oil supplements have also been found to slow the growth of prostate cancer cells. It’s much easier to treat cancer that hasn’t yet spread beyond the prostate.
  • Eat more fat from plants than from animals. Reducing the intake of animal fat (found in lard, butter) and replacing it with plant-based fats is highly recommended. Use olive oil instead of butter and nuts or seeds instead of cheese.
  • Red fruits such as tomatoes and watermelon owe their intense colour to a potent antioxidant called lycopene, that not only helps prevent prostate cancer but reduces tumour growth in men with prostate cancer. Cooking tomatoes makes it easier for the body to absorb lycopene given that our bodies have a difficult time extracting it in its raw form. Studies have shown that men who consume red fruits and tomato-based products have a lower risk of prostate cancer than those who don’t.
  • Legumes & Soybeans. Legumes such as peanuts, beans and lentils contain a compound called isoflavones which protect prostate health and have been shown to lower prostate cancer risk. Researchers have also found a correlation between consumption of soybeans and reduced levels of prostate-specific antigen (PSA). It was concluded that soy was more effective when it was eaten in combination with other cancer-fighting foods.

3. Exercise Regularly.

Men who have a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or higher are considered obese, which increases their risk of prostate cancer. Too much fat, particularly in the middle of the body, has been associated with an increased risk of prostate cancer. Regular exercise is crucial in maintaining a healthy weight.

 

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