Your Easy Prostate-Protection Plan
By Madeline Haller
Just another reason to renew your gym membership: Exercise may reduce your risk of developing prostate cancer, says a new study published in the journal CANCER.
Researchers asked 307 men undergoing a prostate biopsy—164 Caucasians and 143 African Americans—to complete a survey that assessed how much they exercised each week. The results: Men who were moderately or highly active (defined as exercising 9 to 17.9 hours a week) were 53 percent less likely to have biopsy results indicating prostate cancer.
Strangely, only white men saw the exercise benefits. “We’re not entirely sure why,” says study author Lionel L. Bañez, M.D., a scientist at the Durham Veterans Affairs Medical Center, but he points to one possible connection: Exercise influences hormonal profiles in men, and white men and black men have different profiles.
But exercise is known to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, so guys should continue to break a sweat regardless, Dr. Bañez says. “In fact, even men who have prostate cancer are more likely to die from cardiovascular disease [than their cancer],” he says.