Can This Healthy Drink Really Cause Prostate Cancer?

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A man drinking from red plastic cup

According to a series of new studies, the quality of a man’s lifestyle can play a define role in his prostate cancer risks.

“A diet rich in complex carbohydrates and lower in protein and fat is associated with a 60 percent to 70 percent reduced risk of prostate cancer,” said Adriana Vidal, a co-author of two of the studies and an assistant professor at Duke University School of Medicine in Durham, N.C.

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In addition, a fiber-filled diet reduced the risk of aggressive prostate cancer by 70 percent to 80 percent, according to Vidal.

Quite surprisingly, however, the results of two additional studies have suggested that drinking too much milk may increase a man’s risk of advanced prostate cancer.

Doctors reviewed the consumption of dairy products among nearly 3,000 people, including almost 1,900 men with either localized or advanced prostate cancer. The investigators found that drinking milk was associated with advanced prostate cancer.

Interestingly, only milk seemed to influence prostate cancer. Total dairy consumption was not related to prostate cancer risk, nor was eating other types of dairy products, such as yogurt, ice cream and cheese.

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The analysis also found that men with low overall calcium intake were at greater risk of prostate cancer when they ate more dairy products, compared with men with average or high levels of calcium in their diet.

The findings suggest that although calcium intake likely contributes to an increased risk of prostate cancer, “additional components in dairy may contribute to prostate cancer development,” the authors concluded.

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How can men help fight prostate cancer with food?

Some of the best foods men can eat to help support prostate health include:

Cruciferous vegetables: Broccoli, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, bok choy and cauliflower
Fish: Salmon and tuna
Nuts: Almonds, walnuts, pecans and Brazil nuts
Whole grains: Brown rice, oats, bran, whole wheat bread, whole wheat pasta, quinoa
Lycopene-rich foods: Watermelon, tomatoes, tomato-based products (such as pasta sauce and soups), and red grapefruit
Selenium: Brazil nuts, seafood, bran, wheat germ, oats and brown rice

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