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A plant-based diet may lower the risk of prostate cancer progression and recurrence, according to a new study presented at the 2023 ASCO Genitourinary Cancers Symposium. The study involved participants enrolled in the Cancer of the Prostate Strategic Urologic Research Endeavor (CaPSURE) study, all of whom had early to mid-grade prostate cancer. The participants completed food frequency questionnaires, which were used to score the overall plant-based index and the healthful plant-based index of their diet. The researchers found that patients who reported consuming the highest amounts of plant-based foods had a 52% lower risk of disease progression and a 53% lower risk of recurrence compared with those who had the lowest amounts of plants in their diet.

This study adds to a growing body of evidence that suggests plant-based diets offer numerous health benefits, including reducing the risk of diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and overall mortality. While previous research has suggested that certain foods, such as tomatoes, may reduce prostate cancer incidence and mortality, this study provides evidence that a plant-based diet can also lower the risk of cancer progression and recurrence in those already diagnosed with prostate cancer.

The researchers plan to conduct further analysis to examine the relationship between plant-based diets and prostate cancer-specific mortality and quality of life. In the meantime, the findings of this study may provide valuable guidance to those at risk of prostate cancer or those already diagnosed with the disease to make better, more healthful dietary choices.

This study highlights the importance of dietary choices in cancer prevention and management, particularly in prostate cancer. The findings suggest that incorporating more plant-based foods into one’s diet may offer significant health benefits, which may lead to more health professionals to consider incorporating dietary recommendations into their practice to help prevent and manage cancer in patients.