There is a constant debate; will diet modifications assist men in dealing with advanced prostate cancer? Most of us believe that it will; now there has been a small study that supports this belief.
The onset of advanced prostate cancer is signaled by a rising prostate-specific antigen level (PSA) after pimary treatment. A rising PSA is the hallmark of recurrent prostate cancer and is often the earliest sign of extraprostatic spread in men who are otherwise asymptomatic.
Hormonal therapy (ADT) does extend survival in a cohort of men, it is not curative and produces many significant side effects many which are significant. Dietary modification may offer an important tool for clinical management.
Epidemiologic studies have associated the Western diet not only with prostate cancer incidence but also with a greater risk of disease progression after treatment. Conversely, many elements of plant-based diets have been associated with reduced risk of progression. For many men, dietary modification can be stressful and difficult to implement.
A group of researchers, in responding to this, conducted a 6-month (short term) pilot clinical trial to investigate whether adoption of a plant-based diet, reinforced by stress management training, could attenuate the rate of further PSA rise.
Urologists at the University of California, San Diego, and San Diego Veterans Affairs Medical Centers recruited 14 men with recurrent prostate cancer. A pre-post design was employed in which each man served as his own control.
Rates of PSA rise were ascertained for each man for the following periods: from the time of posttreatment recurrence up to the start of the study (prestudy) and from the time immediately preceding the intervention (baseline) to the end of the intervention (0-6 months).
a) There was a significant decrease in the rate of PSA rise from prestudy to 0 to 6 months ( P < .01).b) Four of 10 evaluable men experience an absolute reduction in their PSA levels over the entire 6-month study.c) Nine of 10 had a reduction in their rates of PSA rise and an improvement of their PSA doubling times.d) Median PSA doubling time increased from 11.9 months (prestudy) to 112.3 months (intervention).These results provide preliminary evidence that adoption of a plant-based diet, in combination with stress reduction, may attenuate disease progression and have therapeutic potential for clinical management of recurrent prostate cancer.Published in Integrative Cancer Therapies; Gordon A. Saxe, MD, PhD, Department of Family and Preventive Medicine, Moores UCSD Cancer Center, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, California; Jacqueline M. Major, MS Department of Family and Preventive Medicine, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, California; Jacquelyn Y. Nguyen, MD, School of Medicine, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, California. Karen M. Freeman, MPH Moores UCSD Cancer Center, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, California., Tracy M. Downs, MD, Department of Surgery, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, California; Carol E. Salem, MD, Department of Surgery, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, California.
Joel T Nowak, M.A., M.S.W.