Prostate Cancer Risk Factors
Simply put…all men are at risk for developing prostate cancer. According to the American Cancer Society only one man in 35 will die of this disease. A little less than 80 percent of men who reach age 80 have prostate cancer. Besides being male, there are other risk factors that impact every male.
The most significant risk factor for prostate cancer is age. This risk dramatically increases after the age of 50. About two-thirds of all prostate cancers are diagnosed in men age 65 and older.
Having a father or brother with the disease more than doubles the risk for prostate cancer. Statistics from the American Cancer Society show that if a brother/sibling has prostate cancer that the risk for the other brother increases the risk more than having an affected father does. That risk is even higher when there are multiple family members affected.
Statistics from the American Cancer Society show that prostate cancer occurs about 60% more often in African American men than in white American men. Worldwide, Japanese and African males living in their native countries have a lower rate of prostate cancer. Incidences for these groups increase sharply when they immigrate to the United States.
Some research suggests that exposure to such things as heavy metals (such as cadmium), agent orange, infectious agents, or tobacco related activities may increase the risk of contracting prostate cancer.
Diet & Exercise
People who have a poor diet or are overweight may be at increased risk of several types of cancer. For example, studies suggest that people whose diet is high in fat have an increased risk of colon, uterine, breast and prostate cancers. It is also suggested by the American Cancer Society that high dietary fat may be a contributing factor to prostate cancer.
The numbers show that the disease is significantly more common in countries where red meat and dairy products are dietary staples, compared to countries where the basic diet consists of rice, soybean products, and vegetables.
Lack of physical activity and being overweight are risk factors for prostate, breast, colon, esophageal, kidney, and uterine cancers.
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For more information on reducing risks for prostate cancer, please call Markstein Cancer Education and Prevention Services at (510) 869-8833.