Healthy diet may help prevent prostate cancer

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A recent study published in BJU International has shed new light on the relationship between diet and prostate cancer risk.

Conducted on 15,296 men in Spain over a median follow-up of 17 years, the study explored how different dietary patterns influence the development of prostate cancer.

Dietary Patterns Analyzed

The researchers categorized the participants’ diets into three main types:

Western Dietary Pattern: This diet was high in high-fat dairy products, processed meats, refined grains, sweets, caloric drinks, convenience food, and sauces. It also included a low intake of low-fat dairy products and whole grains.

Prudent Dietary Pattern: Characterized by a high intake of low-fat dairy products, vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and juices.

Mediterranean Dietary Pattern: A diet rich in fish, vegetables, legumes, boiled potatoes, fruits, olives, and vegetable oil, and low in juices.

Key Findings

The study made some significant observations:

  • The Prudent and Mediterranean diets showed no significant impact on the overall risk of developing prostate cancer.
  • The Western dietary pattern, however, was linked to an increased risk of developing aggressive prostate cancer.

Implications for Prostate Cancer Prevention

Lead author Adela Castelló-Pastor, PhD, and co–senior authors Marina Pollán, PhD, and Maria-José Sánchez, MD, PhD, suggest that avoiding unhealthy dietary habits, particularly those associated with the Western diet, could be crucial in preventing aggressive forms of prostate cancer.

They also propose that adopting dietary habits characteristic of the Mediterranean diet could reduce the risk of other chronic diseases.

The Role of the EPIC Study

This research is part of the broader European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) study, which aims to understand the connections between diet, lifestyle factors, and various chronic diseases, including cancer.


The findings from this Spanish cohort suggest that while healthy diets like the Prudent and Mediterranean may not significantly lower the risk of prostate cancer, unhealthy dietary patterns, particularly the Western diet, could increase the risk of aggressive prostate cancer.

This study emphasizes the importance of dietary choices in cancer prevention and overall health.

If you care about cancer, please read studies about Catching the silent killer: a new study on esophageal cancer and findings of New trick knocks out tough guy prostate cancer.

For more information about cancer, please see recent studies about How to harness the power of anti-cancer foods and supplements and results showing that Empower your plate: cancer-fighting foods and recipes.

The research findings can be found in BJU International.

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