The second most common cancer among men worldwide is prostate cancer. One in every eight men gets prostate cancer around the age of 50 in the UK. In the UK, more than 40,000 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer every year. Sometimes the prostate cancer grows quickly and spreads to other parts of the body.
Prostate cancer usually starts in the prostate gland in men. The prostate is a walnut-size and shape organ (gland) surrounding the top of the urethra, located under the bladder outlet. It usually grows bigger as men get older. The prostate helps to produce semen (the fluid that carries sperm). Cancer begins to develop when the cells in the prostate grow in an uncontrolled way.
The symptoms may include issues related to urination and erectile dysfunction.
Things that help slow the progression of prostate cancer
With the progress in healthcare, new ways of treatment are emerging for prostate cancer. Researchers have developed a diagnostic tool using artificial intelligence to analyse CT scans in just seconds to spot prostate cancer before a patient has any symptoms.
In addition, prostate cancer in its early stage can be restricted from progression by adopting changes in lifestyle and diet. Following are some simple diet and lifestyle changes that help in reversing or slowing prostate cancer:
Tomatoes contain lycopene. It is a potent antioxidant that reduces the risk of prostate cancer or may help reduce its progression. A lycopene-rich diet is found best for curing prostate cancer. Men who frequently eat tomatoes are less likely to develop prostate cancer. Lycopene is an antioxidant, which works to reduce cancer cells production and prevents cell damage. Pureed or cooked tomatoes are the best option (lycopene is absorbed easily by the body) as lycopene is tightly bonded to the walls of the tomatoes, which are hard to extract. You can add fresh or sun-dried tomatoes to your salad, have eggs with tomato slices. Tomato-based soups also boost lycopene intake. Fresh tomato juice in the morning is another best option.
Broccoli contains compounds that help protect people from cancer. Interestingly, broccoli belongs to a group of vegetables called cruciferous that may have some properties that lower the risk of prostate cancer. The phytochemical sulforaphane in broccoli targets and kills cancer cells. As a result, the healthy prostate cells remain unaffected. Cabbage, cauliflower, sprouts, and kale are other cruciferous vegetables. Broccoli can be added to soups, salads, and stir-fries.
Pomegranates are a rich source of antioxidants and can inhibit the production or progression of prostate cancer cells. Pomegranate is considered a super fruit, having high levels of antioxidants. Drinking 8 ounces of pomegranate juice stops the progression of prostate cancer.
Good health is associated with a decent balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. The typical western diet contains omega-6 fatty acids but fewer omega-3s. The higher consumption of omega-3 fatty acids lowers the risk of prostate cancer. Fatty fish found in cold waters is rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Increase the intake of omega-3 in your diet. Fatty fish includes salmon, mackerel, sardines, trout, and herring. Try to eat fatty fish with another prostrate-friendly food, eat the fish with lemon or tomato sauce.
Soybeans and Legumes
Legumes, including soybeans, contain phytoestrogens, active plant compounds that suppress tumour growth. They belong to a food group that consists of beans, peanuts, and lentils. Phytoestrogens have antioxidant properties that fight cancer cells.
Soybean has phytoestrogens that reduce the risk of prostate cancer. The consumption of soy reduces the prostate-specific antigen. Prostate-specific antigen is a protein produced by the prostate. The PSA level in your blood is a screening test for prostate cancer.
Green tea has significant health benefits. It contains compounds that reduce the risk of prostate cancer by limiting tumour growth and killing cancer cells. Green tea contains xanthine derivatives, epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), and epicatechin. Try to have a cup of green tea in the morning. You can also have green tea after lunch or dinner.
Smokers have a high risk of developing prostate cancer. In addition, men with prostate cancer are likely to have a recurrence of the disease if they continue smoking.
Maintain Body Weight
A healthy weight can significantly lower the risk of many heart problems and cancers. If you are overweight, you are at high risk of advanced prostate cancer. It is essential to maintain a healthy weight if you have prostate cancer. In fat men, prostate cancer is more likely to spread even after surgery or radiotherapy. Staying a healthy weight also reduces urinary problems after surgery.
Men with prostate cancer need to be physically active. However, it is best to ask your GP before you start any exercise. The GP might refer you to a physiotherapist for a safe exercise plan. The amount of physical activity you may need is subject to your fitness level, the stage of your cancer, and the treatments you are taking.
Try to be physically active for 2-3 days a week. Start with a 10-15 minutes exercise and gradually increase your exercise duration. The type of physical activity doesn’t matter; the purpose is to get active. Try the following tips:
- Walking, cycling, gardening, and swimming are all the best
- Use stairs rather than lift
- Get off the bus one stop earlier
- Lifting and stretching arms and legs from the bed