Fried Food Consumption Linked to Higher Risk of Prostate Cancer

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A recent study suggests men who eat fried foods more than once a week might increase their risk of prostate cancer by a third.

Foods like chips, fried chicken, battered fish and doughnuts are linked to the formation of aggressive forms of the cancer.

While there have been previous studies indicating that a poor diet can affect the chances of getting prostate cancer, this is the first study that pinpoints deep-fried foods as having an affect on the disease.

Researchers published the study in journal The Prostate and explained that eating deep fried foods at least once a week increased cancer risk between 30 and 37 percent compared to men who didn’t eat fried foods as often.

There are a number of factors considered when determining prostate cancer risk, including age and genetic background. But prostate cancer, along with a few other cancers, are strongly linked with diet.

One study found men could reduce their risk of prostate cancer by up to 40 percent if they ate a diet rich in oily fish, as the oil is believed to have anti-cancer properties.

Previous studies also indicated that eating foods cooked at very high heat, like grilled meats, could increase the risk of the cancer.

To explore that notion further, experts at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Centre in Seattle analyzed the data from two studies involve 1,549 men with prostate cancer and 1,492 men of similar age and profile who did not have it.

They were between the ages of 35 and 74 and completed detailed surveys about their eating habits.

The analysis determined that those who ate chips, chicken or doughnuts at least once a week had a greater cancer risk.

“This is the first study to look at the association between intake of deep-fried foods and risk of prostate cancer,” Janet Stanford, lead researcher, said.

“The link appeared to be limited to the highest level of consumption - defined in our study as more than once a week. This suggests that regular consumption of deep-fried foods confers a particular risk for developing prostate cancer.”

But other researchers are less convinced. Oliver Childs, senior science communication officer, said that it might be too early to tell if fried food is associated with prostate cancer.

“It’s clear that a healthy diet high in fruit, vegetables and fiber and low in red meat and salt is better for overall health than one packed full of greasy fast food. But from this study alone, we can’t be certain there’s a link between fried food and prostate cancer,” he said.