In light of both Men's Health Month and Father's Day this coming week, I thought we'd chat about the prostate. Hey, why not, right?! The prostate gland is found only in men, and sits below the bladder and in front of the rectum. Prostate cancer is the 2nd highest cause of cancer deaths amongst men. It is a slow growing form of cancer, and many men live with it undiagnosed for a long time.
What can be done to prevent it? As always, consult your doctor and have regular checkups, as well as exercise. Your physician may recommend a PSA (prostate specific antigen) test, to test for protein markers in the blood. Prostate cancer, like breast cancer, is largely linked to diet. Diets high in red meat, saturated fat, dairy, and low in fiber have been shown to increase risk of prostate cancer (as well as breast cancer, heart disease, and diabetes). Soy has been linked to reducing the risk, and consumption of it in its unprocessed form is best. Sources like tempeh, miso, edamame are the least processed, with regular tofu after that. Stay away from GMO soy as well as texturized soy (often written as TVP) and isolated soy proteins, as these lose the benefits of eating soy. Consume large amounts of vegetables, specifically cooked tomatoes (which contain lycopene, a Vitamin A form linked to lowering prostate risk) to boost your fiber and antioxidant intake. A great video about the link between prostate risk and plant-based diets, is from Dr. Michael Gregor on www.nutrition facts.org
Knowing that you can prevent many forms of cancer by choosing healthy foods high in nutrient density is empowering, and not meant to depress. When we know how much diet can influence our disease risk, we can help to reverse that risk. Arm yourself with knowledge, and an armful of veggies, legumes, whole grains, and fruits.
Looking to make the men in your life a healthy meal for Father's Day? Check out these recipes from me, GardenFreshFoodie, that are great for a BBQ celebration.
Oil Free Red Cabbage Slaw: High in antioxidants and low in calories, this beautiful salad is great to bring along. It's inexpensive to make and great for that prostate!
Miso Marinated Shish Kebabs: made with miso, ginger, garlic, and fresh orange juice, the dressing I used for this marinade is also oil free. I marinated tofu and veggies for a perfect meal on the grill. Just what dad ordered, or should order :)
Happy Father's Day to all you daddyo's out there. Wishing you all the best in health and happiness. For more recipes that are plant-based and nutrient packed, visit me at www.gardenfreshfoodie.com