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Drinking This Triggers a Deadly Form of Prostate Cancer

By on April 25, 2014
Had a glass of wine lately? Chances are you could raise your risk of prostate cancer later in life, say researchers.

The study, now reported in the journal Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, shows that men who have chronic inflammation–something caused by eating a diet high in inflammatory foods, such as wine and processed foods–were more likely to have high grade prostate cancer in the future.

In theory, this suggests inflammation could make prostate cancer worse, though this alone won’t cause the disease.

“One of the reasons we know that prostate cancer is more prevalent in people that have a high amount of saturated fat in their diet, a high amount of red meat in their diet, is because those things create inflammation,” says Eve Prang Plews, who works on behalf on Full Spectrum Health. “Inflammation ups your risk of getting all sorts of degenerative diseases, not just prostate cancer.”

Led by researcher Elizabeth A. Platz, Sc.D., M.P.H., who works for the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center in Maryland, Platz isolated 191 men with prostate cancer and 209 men who were cancer free, who had previously participated in the Southwest Oncology Group trial. From there, she took tissue samples from their prostates to look for any signs of inflammation–and the results were worrying.

While 78 percent of those without prostate cancer had inflammation, those who had it had 8 percent more inflammation factors, which translated to a 1.78 increased risk of developing prostate cancer.

Worse yet, chronic inflammation also meant they were more likely to develop a more severe form of cancer.

“What we’ve shown in this observational study is a clear association between prostate inflammation and prostate cancer, although we can’t prove that inflammation is a cause of prostate cancer,” says Platz. “If our findings hold up, we need to figure out how to prevent inflammation in the prostate and how to intervene on inflammation in the prostate. At this time, it’s not known.”

While Platz notes there isn’t much men can do at this time to reduce their prostate cancer risk, some experts believe this study shows that increased inflammation could potentially lower this risk. Luckily, lowering it isn’t as tricky–avoiding inflammatory foods can make a significant difference, for instance. Processed foods, alcohol, and yes, even milk can all raise your risk, so to stay safe, it might be time to switch out your favorite beverages for a glass of water instead.

“While moderate intake of low-fat dairy can actually guard against inflammation, whole milk or even two-percent is still high in saturated fat and could mean trouble,” says Jessica Black, N.D., author of The Anti-Inflammatory Diet and Recipe Book. “But a majority of adults have at least some difficulty digesting milk, so overdoing it could trigger a true inflammatory reaction.”

Readers: Do you think this is a good reason to avoid wine? Why or why not?

Sources:
Study Links Prostate Cancer With Chronic InflammationMySunCoast.com
Chronic Inflammation and Prostate CancerHuffingtonPost.com
Worst Inflammatory Foods, RankedHuffingtonPost.com

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