Moderate drinking lowers risk of prostate cancer in men
USA: A recent study has provided some evidence on the association between drinking alcohol and the risk of prostate cancer. The study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology has found that compared with abstainers alcohol consumption by cancer-free men lowered the risk of lethal prostate cancer. It further found that among men with prostate cancer, red wine was associated with a lower risk of progression to lethal disease.
"This prospective cohort study provides assurance that moderate alcohol consumption is safe for patients with prostate cancer," write the authors.
The prostate is part of the male reproductive system, and it sits just below the bladder. It surrounds the urethra, which is a tube that carries urine out of the body and helps make semen. It is unknown whether alcohol intake is associated with the risk of lethal (metastatic or fatal) prostate cancer. Mary K. Downer, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, and colleagues conducted the study to examine (1) whether alcohol intake among men at risk of prostate cancer is associated with diagnosis of lethal prostate cancer and (2) whether intake among men with nonmetastatic prostate cancer is associated with metastasis or death.
The researchers used the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study (1986 to 2012) to analyze alcohol intake among men at risk of prostate cancer among 47,568 cancer-free men. The analysis of alcohol intake among men with prostate cancer was restricted to 5,182 men diagnosed with nonmetastatic prostate cancer during follow-up. The association of total alcohol, red and white wine, beer, and liquor with lethal prostate cancer and death were examined.
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Key findings of the study include:
- Alcohol drinkers had a lower risk of lethal prostate cancer without a dose-response relationship.
- Total alcohol intake among patients with prostate cancer was not associated with progression to lethal prostate cancer, whereas moderate red wine intake was associated with a lower risk.
- Compared with none, 15 to 30 g/d of total alcohol after prostate cancer diagnosis was associated with a lower risk of death, as was red wine.
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"These observed associations merit additional study but provide assurance that moderate alcohol consumption is safe for patients with prostate cancer," concluded the authors.
For detailed study log on to DOI: 10.1200/JCO.18.02462