Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men, affecting over 220,000 men in the US each year. Beyond prostate cancer, millions more struggle with problems like prostatitis (inflammation of the prostate) and BPH (benign prostate hyperplasia—aka enlarged prostate) that can seriously impact function and quality of life.
Researchers continue to make strides against these all-too-common prostate health conditions. New findings are expanding our understanding of the many risk factors, and importantly, solutions that can help prevent and treat prostate problems, even small ones.
In fact, the sooner you address any minor prostate problems or symptoms—even seemingly unrelated issues—the better your chances of staying healthy over the long term. That’s why new research into emerging risk factors is important, because these findings can give you the upper hand against serious prostate problems that could easily develop later on.
Belly Fat vs Total Body Fat
One recent study, for example, shows that increased abdominal fat is linked to a higher risk of death from prostate cancer. Conducted at the Cancer Epidemiology Unit, University of Oxford, and presented at the European and International Conference on Obesity (ECOICO), this analysis involved more than 200,000 men from the UK.
Results found that increased visceral belly fat (aka “the spare tire”) in men significantly raises the risk of dying from prostate cancer.
The researchers found that while there wasn’t a clear link between the risk of prostate cancer and total body fat percentage (Body Mass Index or BMI), there was a significant link between the amount of central fat around the waist, and the risk of prostate cancer death.
Specifically, men who measured in the top 25% for waist circumference had a 34% higher risk of death from prostate cancer, compared to men in the lowest range. While the data sampled a reasonably large population size, the authors state that additional population-based studies are needed to confirm these results.
These findings reflect other data specifically linking the risk of prostate cancer with lifestyle, body weight, diet, and physical activity. Research shows that an anti-inflammatory diet low in saturated fats and animal proteins may help reduce the risks of prostate cancer. Likewise, regular exercise, especially regular walking, is shown to lower prostate cancer risk and aggressiveness.
Soda Vs. Alcohol: New Research on Dietary Risks
One important new population study showed that a diet high in refined sugars and grains, including pasta, pizza, desserts, and sugary carbonated beverages, significantly increased the risk of prostate cancer. On the other hand, a diet high in vegetables, fruits, and plant-based protein was associated with a lower risk of prostate cancer.
Interestingly, Western diets high in salty foods and alcoholic beverages like beer and wine, did not show clear links to prostate cancer risk.1
Clinical Study: Modified Citrus Pectin Fights Aggressive Prostate Cancer
In my practice, I’ve seen how healthy lifestyle adjustments combined with targeted therapies can make a significant difference in patients with prostate cancer—even aggressive forms of it. The goal is to design a holistic treatment program that addresses the cancer, while actively supporting the health and vitality of the individual—using research-based, synergistic approaches.
One of the fundamental cornerstones of this strategy is the use of Modified Citrus Pectin (MCP), because of its powerful, proven ability to actively control prostate cancer growth and metastasis, while supporting other key areas of health in the process.
Dozens of peer-reviewed, published studies, including peer-reviewed human clinical trials, show how the original and only positively researched form of Modified Citrus Pectin can slow and reverse tumor growth, and reduce metastasis. These results make MCP one of the most important recommendations in any integrative cancer protocol.
The most recent double-blind clinical study, published in European Urology Open Science, showed that this MCP effectively slowed PSA doubling time and cancer progression in patients with biochemical relapse of prostate cancer.2
These results are from a multi-center Phase IIb clinical trial conducted in Israel in a group of prostate cancer patients who received localized treatment for their cancer, but experienced a non-metastatic relapse of the tumor. Data from 18 months of treatment using 15 grams per day of MCP, showed ongoing benefit from the use of MCP and specifically, significant improvement against prostate cancer. 65% of subjects had no disease progression, and 50% of subjects had a lower PSA, or PSADT lengthening time, compared to their baseline 18 months prior. PSADT is an important indicator of prostate cancer aggressiveness.
This study confirmed results seen in two previous, smaller clinical studies on MCP in prostate cancer. Together with additional pre-clinical laboratory studies, the body of published data showing MCP’s benefits in prostate cancer continues to expand.
Modified Citrus Pectin Protects Against Obesity
As research on MCP extends far beyond cancer, we continue to learn more about how it can benefit our most critical areas of health—and support optimal longevity. MCP is being extensively researched in cardiovascular health, because of its ability to block something called Galectin-3 (Gal-3), a protein that drives cardiovascular disease as well numerous other inflammatory conditions, including cancer.
Two important animal studies show that by blocking Gal-3, MCP supports healthy body weight, blood glucose levels, and protects against the inflammatory effects of a high fat diet. These results add to the importance of using MCP in prostate cancer, showing how it can not only actively fight the cancer itself, but also help to mitigate and protect against other risk factors, like diet and physical fitness. 3,4
September is prostate cancer awareness month. As we learn more about this all-too-common condition, we continue to add life-saving strategies to our prostate health toolbox. The truth is, while prostate cancer is fairly common, it doesn’t have to be devastating. In my decades of experience treating thousands of men with prostate health concerns, I’ve discovered powerful approaches backed by peer-reviewed evidence and clinical use, that can give you the upper advantage—while supporting greater health and vitality, year-round.
1. Trudeau K, et al Dietary Patterns Are Associated with Risk of Prostate Cancer in a Population-Based Case-Control Study in Montreal, Canada. Nutrients. 2020;12(7):1907. Published 2020 Jun 27. doi:10.3390/nu12071907
2. Dresler, H. et al. Long term effect of PectaSol-C modified citrus pectin treatment in non-metastatic biochemically relapsed prostate cancer patients: Results of a prospective phase II study. European Urology Supplements, Volume 18, Issue 11, e3467.