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Flaxseed: Does it affect risk of prostate cancer?By Mayo Clinic staff
Original Article: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/flaxseed/AN01712
- With Mayo Clinic urologist
Erik P. Castle, M.D.read biographyclose window
Erik P. Castle, M.D.Erik P. Castle, M.D.
Dr. Erik Castle is a board-certified urologist who joined the Mayo Clinic staff in Arizona in 2007.
Dr. Castle is an associate professor of urology at College of Medicine, Mayo Clinic, and a senior associate consultant in the Department of Urology, where he also is assistant residency coordinator.
He was an assistant professor in the Department of Urology at Tulane University in New Orleans from 2004 to 2006 after serving as a clinical instructor/fellow at Mayo Clinic in Arizona for one year.
Dr. Castle's research interests include prostate cancer, bladder cancer and kidney cancer. He is the director of the Desert Mountain Prostate Cancer Research Fund and is the principal investigator of Castle labs housed at the Samuel C. Johnson Medical Research Building at Mayo Clinic in Arizona. His basic science research is focused on novel secondary hormonal therapies of prostate cancer as well as genomics of prostate and bladder cancers.
His surgical expertise includes laparoscopic urology, robot-assisted radical prostatectomy with nerve sparing, robot-assisted radical cystectomy with neobladder, robot-assisted retroperitoneal lymph node dissection, robot-assisted partial nephrectomy and other robotic urologic oncology procedures. He has performed many of these procedures as demonstrations internationally. He is a member of the American Association of Clinical Urologists, the American Urological Association, the Endourological Society, and the Society of Laparoendoscopic Surgeons. He is past president of the international Society of Urologic Robotic Surgery. He is also the director of the international laparoscopic nephrectomy courses throughout Mexico on behalf of the American Urologic Association.
Risk factors (2)
- Flaxseed: Does it affect risk of prostate cancer?
- Vasectomy: Does it increase my risk of prostate cancer?
Tests and diagnosis (1)
- Prostate cancer: Does PSA level affect prognosis?
- Prostate cancer metastasis: Where does prostate cancer spread?
Treatments and drugs (3)
- Prostate cancer treatment: Does initial treatment preclude others later?
- Prostate cancer brachytherapy: Can I pass radiation to others?
- Ginger for nausea: Does it work?
Alternative medicine (1)
- Pomegranate juice: A cure for prostate cancer?
- Frequent sex: Does it protect against prostate cancer?
Flaxseed: Does it affect risk of prostate cancer?
I take flaxseed to control my high cholesterol. But I've heard that flaxseed increases the risk of prostate cancer. Is this true?
from Erik P. Castle, M.D.
The evidence is mixed as to whether taking flaxseed may play a role in reducing the risk of prostate cancer or limiting its spread. In addition, current data is limited to only a few studies. In one study involving men diagnosed with prostate cancer, those who took a flaxseed supplement and followed a low-fat diet saw their prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels decline. PSA can be a measure of how fast prostate cancer is spreading.
Other preliminary studies report that a low-fat diet supplemented with flaxseed reduced PSA levels in men with enlarged prostate glands (benign prostatic hyperplasia) and in those with prostate cancer. However, those results may have been due to a reduction in dietary fats.
Other studies have shown either no positive effect or a negative effect of flaxseed — and the alpha-linolenic acid contained in flaxseed — on prostate health. So overall, it remains unclear whether flaxseed or flaxseed oil has a role in the prevention or treatment of prostate cancer. Controlled clinical trials may help determine whether or not it's useful in the long term.Next question
Vasectomy: Does it increase my risk of prostate cancer?
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