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Diet and Exercise Can Affect Prostate Cancer: A Recent Study

Posted Dec 14 2008 10:26pm
A good diet and regular exercise can produce lots of benefits, as we all know—a healthy weight, better cardio-vascular health, less chance of diabetes, better bones, and on and on. And there is recent evidence that eating well may also alter the course of prostate cancer.

In a small pilot study, Dr. Dean Ornish focused on 31 men who had been diagnosed with low-risk prostate cancer and decided to follow a course of “watchful waiting”—no intervention therapies, other than “cleaning up” the way they ate and exercised, and adding some daily stress-reduction techniques. The well-known Ornish is the founder and president of the Preventive Medicine Research Institute at the University of California at San Francisco, as well as a clinical professor there.

The men in the study rigorously adhered to a diet that included little meat and lots of vegetables, fruit, and whole grains, supplemented with soy, fish oil, selenium, and vitamins C and E. They also followed a routine of regular exercise, yoga stretching, meditation, and support group participation.

The study’s results suggest that these lifestyle changes may alter gene behavior, and as a result, slow prostate cancer progression. (See, June 18, 2008, for a description of the study and the results, and a link to the abstract.)

Larger clinical trials are needed to confirm these results. But Ornish points out that what is so surprising in his small study is that in just a short time after the men had incorporated the lifestyle changes, measurable positive results were apparent.

Yet more reasons to “get with the program”.
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