If you’re worried about the health of your prostate, it may be time to put down the burger and step away from the steak. Research has shown that certain foods may be detrimental to prostate health and increase your risk of serious health issues. So which foods are the ones you need to avoid? Below you will find four of the worst foods for your prostate and how they impact the gland.
Four foods to avoid for a healthier prostate
Red meat: While red meat has been linked to higher cholesterol levels and heart conditions, binging on steaks and burgers can also raise your risk of prostate cancer. This is due to the formation of heterocyclic amines (HCAs) within the meat when it is cooked at high temperatures – for example, frying in a pan or grilled over an open flame. HCAs have been found to be mutagenic, meaning they can alter DNA and increase your risk of cancer. Along with red meat, processed meats like hot dogs have also been found to increase this risk, so think twice next time you plan a backyard barbeque. This isn’t to say you can never enjoy a juicy steak again; rather, you should limit your intake and make red meat an infrequent indulgence instead of a dietary staple.
High-fat dairy foods: Dairy is an important source of natural calcium that can keep your bones strong and healthy, but consuming high-fat dairy products like heavy cream and whole milk may cause more harm than good. Researchers have found that drinking whole milk may expedite the progression of prostate cancer and increase the risk of mortality due to the disease. Instead of using heavy cream in your coffee, opt for a lower percentage table cream instead. When it comes to milk, skim is the best option, though two percent is still better for your prostate than the full-fat option.
Alcohol: Excessive alcohol consumption has been linked to an increased risk of prostate cancer. In fact, a study conducted by the Prostate Cancer Prevention Trial found that men who regularly consume more than three drinks a day, or 20 drinks a week, were two times as likely to be diagnosed with advanced stage prostate cancer than their peers who were moderate or light drinkers. If you are a heavy drinker, cutting back your alcohol consumption can decrease your risk of prostate cancer, as well as improve your overall health too. (Reverse 10 years of bone loss?)
Saturated fats: Saturated fats found in red meats, dairy products, baked goods, and processed foods have been associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, but they can also be detrimental to prostate health. Research published in Prostate Cancer and Prostatic Diseases has shown that men who ate a diet high in saturated fats were more likely to have more aggressive forms of prostate cancers. Swap out foods high in saturated fats with ones that contain healthier, monounsaturated or polyunsaturated fats like avocados, oily fish, olive oil, and nuts. (Miracle fruit lowers cholesterol in 30 days.)