Dr. Michael Lazar of California HIFU shares insights from a new study on prostate cancer, emphasizing that a healthy diet may contribute to prevention of the disease.
There have been many discoveries recently that identify a link between a diet rich in fatty foods and increased risk of prostate cancer. The evidence continues to mount with the results of this new study investigating the effects of high-fat diets on certain prostate cancer tumors. Researchers at the Cancer Center at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) discovered genetic mechanisms that promote cancer tumor metastasis, pointing to the typical Western high-fat diet as a key factor in driving that metastasis.
The study was published this week in two journals; Nature Genetic and Nature Communications. It compared two types of prostate tumors and found that the metastatic tumors produced huge amounts of lipids, or fats. In tumors that lacked known tumor suppressing genes they discovered that “…the cells’ fat-production machinery was running amok.”
“This study clearly demonstrates how environmental factors, particularly a high fat diet, may actually play a role in activating a switch that changes what might be benign prostate cancer, into advanced metastatic cancer,” explains prostate cancer expert Dr. Michael Lazar of California HIFU. “While this study aims at offering new treatments for advanced prostate cancer in the future, a more relevant takeaway is that men may very well have the opportunity to lower their risk of developing aggressive prostate cancer simply by making smarter lifestyle choices.”
Researchers say the findings of this study could also result in more accurate and predictive mouse models for metastatic prostate cancer, which in turn could promote new and improved therapies for the disease. Additionally, physicians may eventually be able to screen early-stage prostate cancer patients to determine if they have an increased risk for progressing to metastatic disease. Patients with these types of tumors may then be helped by starving the cancer of fat either with the fat-blocking drug or through diet.
Choose a healthy diet
A number of studies have demonstrated that men who consume the highest amount of fat each day have an increased risk of prostate cancer. In addition to lowering the risk of prostate cancer, pursuing a healthier lifestyle has shown beneficial in a number of ways including lowering the risk of many chronic illnesses and promoting heart health. In addition to maintaining a healthy weight, making better choices in diet may include;
- Limiting fatty foods or choosing low-fat varieties (reduce the amount of fat added to foods when cooking, select leaner cuts of meat, and opt for low-fat or reduced-fat dairy products)
- Choose plant based fats over animal fat (olive oil, avocado oil, etc.)
- Increase the amount of fruits and vegetables consumed each day (fruits and vegetables are full of vitamins and nutrients, are more filling and may help to reduce the risk of prostate cancer)
- Fatty fish including salmon, tuna and herring contain important omega-3 fatty acids, a type of fatty acid that has also been linked to a reduced risk of prostate cancer. Flaxseed is also high in omega-3s.
- Reduce the amount of dairy products consumed on a daily basis (milk, cheese and butter)
Even when a person follows a healthy lifestyle, things may not go as planned. But the good news with a prostate cancer diagnosis is that the vast majority of prostate cancers tends to grow slowly, and therefore don’t cause obvious health problems. It all depends on the type of cancer that is found in the prostate; while many grow slower, some are more aggressive.
“Seeking treatment at the right time is imperative for the best outcome,” says Dr. Lazar. “Annual screenings for men – particularly those over 50 – is one of the ways men can take control over treatment options – as newer and more advanced treatments need to be pursued at the earliest stages.”
About California HIFU and Dr. Lazar
HIFU is a FDA approved precise and targeted therapy that reduces the risk of complications caused by surgery and radiation. HIFU uses ultrasound energy, or sound waves, to heat and destroy specifically targeted areas of tissue. HIFU has many proven advantages over traditional treatment modalities for prostate disease.
Dr. Michael Lazar is the only Northern California physician recognized as a leader in the use HIFU for prostate cancer. He has been successfully treating patients with HIFU since 2007. Dr. Lazar formed California HIFU in order to offer minimally invasive prostate cancer treatment to men with the Sonablate. For more information about HIFU treatment or to make an appointment call: (707) 546-5553 or visit our website: www.californiahifu.com.