Guys, here’s your healthcare quiz for the day: What is the most common form of cancer in men?
The answer is prostate cancer, slow-growing cancer of the prostate gland which is a walnut-sized organ in the male reproductive system. In fact, prostate cancer is not only the most common cancer in men, it’s also the second leading cause of cancer death.
September is Prostate Cancer Awareness Month, a good time to encourage men to get proactive with prostate cancer prevention. That’s why Dignity Health, Yavapai Regional Medical Center (YRMC) is providing men with this list that features the risk factors, prevention strategies, and symptoms of prostate cancer.
- Know your family history and other risk factors.
Family history, age, and ethnic background play a role in your likelihood of being diagnosed with prostate cancer.
- Family history – This is the strongest risk factor for prostate cancer. A man who has one close relative with prostate cancer – a father or a brother, for example – is twice as likely to develop prostate cancer as a man with no family history of the disease.
- Age – Prostate cancer is rare in men under 40 and most common in men 65 years and older.
- Ethnicity – African American men are more likely to be diagnosed with prostate cancer; Asian men are the least likely.
- Get screened.
One in eight men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during their lifetime, which is why timely screenings are crucial. Men should discuss screening with their provider around age 45 if you have a family history of prostate cancer or you are African American male. Men at lower risk should also discuss screening with their physicians since prostate cancer can occur in men considered lower risk for the disease, too.
- Eat your fruits and vegetables.
There is no specific diet for prostate cancer prevention, however, eating a mostly plant-based diet benefits your overall health. It’s also doctor-recommended for those with an average risk of prostate cancer.
What types of foods should be on your plate and what should you avoid? A healthy diet consists of whole grains, plenty of fruits and vegetables, and good fats (avocado and nuts). Limiting your consumption of meat and dairy products is also recommended.
- Watch your weight.
Being obese or overweight can increase your risk for prostate cancer. You are considered obese when your Body Mass Index (BMI) is 30 or higher. If you’re overweight or obese, it’s time to embrace a regular exercise routine and a healthier diet. Your healthcare provider will be able to advise you on both.
- Know the symptoms.
Contact your healthcare provider if you are experiencing any of the following symptoms:
- Difficulty urinating
- Frequent urge to urinate
- Pain in the lower back and hips
- Blood in your urine
Take control of your health now by talking to a Dignity Health, Yavapai Regional Medical Group healthcare provider about prostate cancer. Visit DignityHealth.org/YRMG to find a physician and clinic near you.
Submitted by Dignity Health, Yavapai Regional Medical Group