By Dr. Prashant Mehta, Oncology,
Prostate cancer, one of the most common types of cancer seen in men, usually occurs gradually and initially stays confined in the prostate gland. However, in certain cases, the cancer cells may grow more aggressively to spread to other body parts.
Prostate cancer normally does not reveal symptoms in the initial stage. However, if signs do appear, they usually include one or more of the following- frequent urge of urination, difficulty commencing and maintaining urination, blood in urine, painful urination etc.
One major cause of prostate cancer is heavy body weight or obesity. A research study published in the year 2010 revealed that a high-fat, high-protein diet containing red meat and dairy products, can trigger the risk of prostate cancer in men. It has been observed that men who do not consume sufficient portion of fruits and veggies, and intake lots of calcium supplements instead, develop greater chances of prostate cancer.
Obesity is associated with several hormonal changes. Many of these changes have been linked with development and advancement of prostate cancer. Fats encourage increased production of hormones like testosterone. High levels of testosterone hormone may stimulate comatose cancer cells, ultimately leading to prostate cancer.
- Other than obesity, there are certain risk factors for prostate cancer such as age, ethnicity or race, family history etc.
- Older men, above 50 years of age, are prone to prostate cancer. Research data shows that about 6 out of every 10 men diagnosed with such cancer is above 65 years of age.
- People who have a family history of prostate cancer are likely to be affected with this cancer. In some cases, heavy body weight or obesity runs in the family, as a result of which such health conditions are often inherited.
How to prevent prostate cancer-
Diet plays an important role in preventing, or at least controlling the symptoms of prostate cancer. This is all the more essential for those who are obese.
Since excess body weight acts as a risk factor of prostate cancer, doctors suggest dietary changes and physical activity to reduce body weight. Reduced intake of animal proteins, limited consumption of calcium products and sufficient intake of green vegetables and fresh fruits can help reduce the chances of prostate cancer. Any sort of physical activity that may help reduce your body weight is desirable.
However, if the cancer has spread to other body parts, it is advisable that you visit a doctor, who may perform chemotherapy or radiotherapy to treat the cancer cells.