Prostate cancer is a complex, multi-faceted disease. Whether found early or later, most men will have decisions to choose surgery, radiation, or even active surveillance. Any of these treatments can be very effective in helping eradicate cancer or at least slow the progression of the disease.
Besides prostate cancer treatment methods, men have a couple of other ways that may reduce the incidence of prostate cancer to begin with and slow down its progression.
These two tools men can resort to are good nutrition and exercise. Both can result in a win-win situation for men with prostate cancer and reduce some of the treatment’s side effects. Not only are dietary and exercise changes seen as a complement to prostate cancer treatment, it can provide men a sense of control of the situation.
Following are strategies that may help slow down the progression of prostate cancer. By adopting these strategies, men with prostate cancer can feel good knowing they are doing all they can not to let this disease take them down:
- Drink green tea
Numerous studies conducted on a large population of men have revealed that those who regularly consume green tea are less likely to develop prostate cancer than those who do not drink the beverage. Furthermore, other studies have indicated that the risk of prostate cancer decreases as the amount, frequency, and duration of green tea consumption increases.
Research has shown that men who consume more than three cups of green tea daily have a lower risk of developing prostate cancer. According to a study conducted on a group of middle-aged and older men who regularly consume green tea daily of five or more cups, had lower rates of developing advanced prostate cancer than those who drink less than one cup per day.
What is unique about green tea? A compound called EGCG found in green tea is believed to help reduce and kill cancerous cells possibly. In addition, green tea appears to interfere with the activity of an enzyme called orthnithine decarboxylase, which plays a role in the beginning of prostate cancer. This beverage may also slow the growth of prostate cancer cells by encouraging the repair of damaged DNA that might otherwise promote cancer growth.
- Practice yoga
Scientists at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania has found that men undergoing radiation treatment for prostate cancer can benefit greatly from practicing yoga twice weekly. The study showed a significant reduction in the common side effects of radiation,
including fatigue, urinary and sexual dysfunction. Stress-relieving activities like yoga may also positively impact the spread of prostate cancer by reducing stress levels that can affect the nerves surrounding the tumor.
- Add in flaxseed
The seeds of this plant have been utilized for centuries to treat various illnesses. The potential benefits of flaxseed in combating prostate cancer are still uncertain, but studies suggest that it may help slow down tumor growth. Flaxseed is rich in polyphenols called lignans, which are present in plants. Flax has up to 800 times more lignans than other food sources. Prostate fluids of men residing in countries with low disease rates contain higher levels of lignans, as discovered by researchers. Moreover, in vitro experiments have revealed that lignans can hinder the growth of prostate cancer cells in a Petri dish.
- Consider taking vitamin D
Men suffering from prostate cancer generally have lower levels of vitamin D. However, vitamin D can be obtained from various sources such as exposure to sunlight and consumption of fatty fish like salmon or fortified milk. Taking a vitamin D supplement is another option which can help raise the vitamin D level and even possibly slow down the growth of cancerous cells. It is recommended that men consult with their doctor before taking any vitamin D supplements.
- Eat foods rich in lycopene
Look up which phytochemical has the power to beat back prostate cancer and lycopene will be at the top of the list. This natural pigment found in cooked tomatoes, watermelon, papaya, grapefruit, cooked red pepper, asparagus, red cabbage, and mangos, has long been studies for its effect on cancers. Studies are mixed but given the fact these foods are part of healthy diet, makes sense they just might slow down the disease.
- Make time for turmeric
Using turmeric as a dietary supplement may decrease the risk of developing prostate cancer by reducing inflammation. The inflammation of the prostate gland is a known risk factor for prostate cancer. Turmeric contains curcumin, an anti-inflammatory agent that can help minimize gland inflammation and potentially prevent prostate cancer onset.
- Make exercise a priority
It has been well-documented that exercise imparts dramatic health improvements in quality of life and health for colon and breast cancer patients. One review looked at men who had nonmetastatic prostate cancer with a survival rate of at least 4 years after diagnosis. They were noted to be involved in vigorous exercise (cycling, swimming, jogging) for more than 3 hours weekly, leading to lower cancer mortality rates. Another study found men with localized prostate cancer who walked briskly more than 3 hours weekly had a 57% reduction in prostate cancer mortality.
Dr. David Samadi is the Director of Men’s Health and Urologic Oncology at St. Francis Hospital in Long Island. He’s a renowned and highly successful board certified Urologic Oncologist Expert and Robotic Surgeon in New York City, regarded as one of the leading prostate surgeons in the U.S., with a vast expertise in prostate cancer treatment and Robotic-Assisted Laparoscopic Prostatectomy. Dr. Samadi is a medical contributor to NewsMax TV and is also the author of The Ultimate MANual, Dr. Samadi’s Guide to Men’s Health and Wellness, available online both on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Visit Dr. Samadi’s websites at robotic oncology and prostate cancer 911.