- Recent studies suggest that regular consumption of plant-based foods high in flavonoid compounds might provide a protective shield against the most aggressive form of prostate cancer.
- Flavonoids are found in a variety of fruits, vegetables, teas, wines, and juices and are theorized to reduce cancer risk by combatting inflammation, oxidation, cell death, and tumor cell growth.
- The new research did not substantiate the claim that increased fruits and vegetables consumption can prevent prostate cancer. However, the study suggests that flavonoids may reduce the risk for aggressive prostate cancer.
- The research identifies tea, fruit juices, strawberries, onions, greens, kale, and broccoli as common flavonoid sources for the study participants. However, the researchers were unable to link the observed protective effect to any specific category of plant-based food.
- Experts have expressed reservations about the research design and its ability to draw concrete conclusions. The study remains preliminary and further research and peer-review is necessary to confirm the findings.
Regular consumption of plant-based foods high in flavonoid compounds might provide a protective shield against the most aggressive form of prostate cancer, according to recent research work.
However, the research’s limitations must be kept in mind, researchers have pointed out, as it is still early to pronounce that a plant-based diet averts prostate cancer.
Role of Flavonoids
Vegetables, fruits, teas, wine, juices, and cocoa are rich sources of flavonoids. Based on long-standing theories, these specific antioxidants could possibly reduce cancer risk since they combat inflammation, oxidation, cell death, and tumor cell growth.
New Research Insights
The fresh study however did not investigate the cancer-prevention capabilities of flavonoids holistically. By studying about 1,900 patients freshly diagnosed with prostate cancer, it was discovered that diet rich in flavonoids led to a 25 percent lesser possibility of being diagnosed with the most severe and fastest-progressing form of prostate cancer than those with minimal flavonoid consumption.
“We compared men with low-aggressive disease to high aggressive,” stated lead study author Susan Steck, an associate professor at the University of South Carolina’s Arnold School of Public Health.
Steck also emphasized that while increased fruits and vegetables consumption is believed to improve the chances of not contracting prostate cancer at all, the research couldn’t substantiate this claim. What the research does suggest though is the impact of flavonoids on reducing the risk for aggressive prostate cancer.
The Flavonoids’ Source
Depending on individual dietary habits at the time of diagnosis, the authors identified green and black tea, as well as orange and grapefruit juice, as the paramount flavonoid sources for the study participants. Food items like strawberries, onions, cooked greens, kale, and broccoli were also flavonoid-rich foods favored.
The research couldn’t single-handledly link the observed protective effect to any specific classification of plant-based food. Hence, the authors concluded that the advantage was rooted in a dietary mix of flavonoids.
Some experts, such as Dr. Lionel Banez, assistant professor of urologic surgery at Duke University Medical Center, have expressed their reservations regarding the research design and its capacity to draw solid conclusions.
According to Banez, a more reliable result can be derived from a controlled study where patients are placed on a specific dietary plan and then observed for future cancer developments.
“These results are not sufficient to recommend plant-based diets as treatments for prostate cancer or to prevent aggressive prostate cancer,” he cautioned.
In conclusion, while the study outlines an association between flavonoids and the risk of a form of prostate cancer, it hasn’t established a cause-and-effect relationship. The study remains preliminary until it has been scrutinised and published in a peer-reviewed journal.
For more useful facts about prostate cancer risk, consider visiting the American Cancer Society.