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Sandy Srinivas, MD


Can Plant-Based Diets Reduce the Risk of Prostate Cancer Progression?

By: Victoria Kuhr, BA
Posted: Thursday, March 16, 2023

Plant-based dietary patterns appear to be associated with a lower risk of prostate cancer progression and recurrence among men aged 65 and older, particular for those who reported a faster walking pace. Additionally, Vivian N. Liu, MPH, of the University of California, San Francisco, and colleagues proposed that survivors of prostate cancer may be recommended diet and exercise to improve clinical outcomes after their diagnosis. These findings were presented at the 2023 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Genitourinary Cancers (GU) Symposium (Abstract 392).

The study evaluated men diagnosed with T1–T3a prostate cancer who were enrolled in the Cancer of the Prostate Strategic Urologic Research Endeavor. All the men completed a food frequency questionnaire at a median time of 31.5 months after diagnosis. The primary outcomes were determining how the associations between plant-based diets and risk of disease progression impacted recurrence, secondary treatment, bone metastases, and death from prostate cancer. The secondary outcome was prostate cancer recurrence.

A total of 204 disease progression events (169 from biochemical recurrence) were observed in 2,038 men. The median follow-up time was 7.4 years after the food frequency questionnaire was completed.

Men in the highest quintile of overall plant–based dietary indices had a 52% lower risk of disease progression and a 53% lower risk of recurrence compared with men in the lowest quintile. Although the healthful plant–based dietary indices were not associated with prostate cancer progression or recurrence overall, men in the higher quintiles had statistically significant reductions in risk of recurrence. Among men older than age 65, a greater consumption of a healthful plant–based diet was associated with a lower risk of prostate cancer recurrence (P = .03). In addition, among participants with a brisk or fast walking pace of more than 3 hours per week, men in the highest overall plant–based dietary indices quintile had a 56% lower risk of prostate cancer progression and a 59% decrease in the risk of prostate cancer recurrence.

Disclosure: For full disclosures of the study authors, visit

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