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A Healthy Prostate: Tips to Help Prevent Prostate Cancer
Posted Date: 6/10/2007

Dr. Christopher SaigalProstate Cancer is the most frequently diagnosed cancer in men. More than 218,000 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer this year alone, and more than 27,000 will die. June is Prostate Cancer Awareness Month, and with Father's Day approaching, it's a great time think about the ways men can keep their prostates healthy and be proactive about cancer prevention.

"Prostate cancer and problems urinating caused by benign prostatic enlargement affect the vast majority of men as they age," said Dr. Christopher Saigal, an assistant professor of urology and a researcher at UCLA's Jonsson Cancer Center. "It makes sense to do what you can to avoid a foreseeable problem with your health"

  • Maintain a healthy weight and exercise regularly.
  • Eat five or more servings of fruits and vegetables every day. Tomatoes, watermelons, pink grapefruits, guava and papaya contain lycopene, a powerful antioxidant, and have been touted as prostate healthy. Cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, Brussels sprouts, bok choy and kale also are good choices.
  • Limit your intake of red meat, especially high-fat or processed meats, and limit your intake of high-fat dairy products.
  • Tell your doctor if you have a family history of prostate cancer. Having a father or brother with prostate cancer more than doubles a man's risk of developing this disease.
  • Include more soy in your diet from sources such as tofu, soy nuts or soy flour or powders.
  • Avoid tobacco and alcohol.
  • Include in your diet selenium-rich foods such as wheat germ, tuna, herring and other seafood and shellfish, beef liver, kidney, eggs, sunflower and sesame seeds, cashews, mushrooms, garlic and onions. Selenium reduces risk of prostate cancer.
  • Get screened. PSA blood test and digital rectal exams are recommended annually, beginning at age 50. Men at high risk, such as African American men or men with a strong family history of prostate cancer should begin testing at age 45.

UCLA's Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center comprises more than 240 researchers and clinicians engaged in disease research, prevention, detection, control, treatment and education. One of the nation's largest comprehensive cancer centers, the Jonsson center is dedicated to promoting research and translating basic science into leading-edge clinical studies. In July 2006, the Jonsson Cancer Center was named the best cancer center in California by U.S. News & World Report, a ranking it has held for seven consecutive years.

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