A NEW study suggest that the larger a man, the greater his risk of getting and dying from aggressive prostate cancer.
Researchers found that every additional 4 inches of height increased a man’s chances of being diagnosed with high-risk prostate cancer by 21 per cent, and their odds of dying from prostate cancer by 17 per cent.
The same held true regarding the size of a man’s waist. Every 4-inch increase in waist circumference increased the odds of developing aggressive prostate cancer by 13 per cent and the risk of dying from prostate cancer by 18 per cent.
“I definitely think these results encourage men to have a healthy weight, and to have more public health policies that prevent obesity,” said lead researcher Aurora Perez-Cornago, a nutritional epidemiologist with the Oxford University.
Perez-Cornago and her colleagues came to their conclusions based on data from nearly 142,000 men in eight European countries who participated in a large-scale study of cancer and nutrition.
Among these men, just over 7,000 developed prostate cancer during an average 14 years of follow-up, including 728 diagnosed with aggressive cancer and 1,388 with advanced-stage cancer. Of those diagnosed, 934 died from their cancer.
Previous studies have suggested a potential link between prostate cancer and a man’s height or weight, but this is the first to assess whether those factors influence the risk of being diagnosed with either a slow-growing or aggressive cancer, Perez-Cornago said.
Height by itself was not linked to a man’s overall risk of developing prostate cancer, nor was it associated with risk of being diagnosed with low- or intermediate-grade prostate cancer, researchers said. However, height did influence a man’s risk of being diagnosed with aggressive prostate cancer and of dying from prostate cancer.
Similarly, body-mass index and waist circumference both were shown to directly predict risk of developing high-grade prostate cancer.
The study only found an association between height, weight and aggressive prostate cancer risk; it couldn’t prove a cause-and-effect link.