Prostate Cancer Coverage from Every Angle

Mediterranean Diet and Prostate Cancer–Related Fatigue

By: Anna Nowogrodzki
Posted: Wednesday, September 16, 2020

Following a modified Mediterranean-style diet with limited alcohol consumption appeared to improve cancer-related fatigue, quality of life, and weight in men with prostate cancer on androgen-deprivation therapy, according to a small pilot study. Olivia R.L. Wright, PhD, of the University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia, and colleagues published their findings in Clinical Nutrition and recommended a larger randomized controlled trial to confirm these results.

“The Mediterranean-style dietary pattern is safe, feasible, and effective in improving cancer-related fatigue and quality of life in men with prostate cancer treated with androgen-deprivation therapy, compared to usual care,” the authors wrote.

The study included 23 men (average age, 66) with prostate cancer who received androgen-deprivation therapy for at least 3 months. The researchers randomly assigned patients to 12 weeks of regular care or 6 individualized nutrition consults with an accredited dietician and a Mediterranean diet. To determine diet adherence, patients answered a screening quiz with 14 yes-or-no questions about how frequently they ate food groups targeted by the Mediterranean diet. This diet limits saturated fat, red meat, and alcohol while eating fruit, vegetables, fish, dairy, nuts or seeds, and fiber. The Mediterranean diet commonly includes red wine, but this modified version sought to limit alcohol to no more than 2 units per week.

Patients on the Mediterranean diet had significantly improved cancer-related fatigue compared with the control group at both 8 and 12 weeks. Their quality of life was better at 12 weeks, and they had lower total body mass at 8 and 12 weeks. The Mediterranean diet did not appear to be associated with any adverse events. A total of 91% of patients completed the study, with 100% attendance at nutrition consultations and 81% diet adherence, according to the 14-question screen.

Disclosure: The study authors reported no conflicts of interest.

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