Ask the Nutritionist
Q: My husband was recently diagnosed with very advanced (stage IV) and very aggressive prostate cancer. He has evolved from a high protein diet (including a significant amount of red meat) to a modified vegan diet (he will eat fish). Is this a good idea? What do you recommend for someone who is 60 years old and very healthy in all other regards, except for his prostate cancer?
AKL, Salem, Massachusetts
A: Optimal nutrition can reduce the incidence of prostate cancer and may help reduce the risk of its progression. There are many studies currently being conducted to help further understand how diet and prostate cancer are related. Including colorful, plant-based foods and maintaining a healthy weight are among the most important nutrition strategies for prostate cancer survivors.
When it comes to protein, lean, high quality choices such as fish, nuts, seeds, and beans are optimal choices. Studies show that plant-based diets provide important antioxidants and phytonutrients that work together to reduce the risk of developing various types of cancer and help to support the immune system. Including a variety of protein-rich foods can help ensure that a person consumes important nutrients including zinc, iron, and Vitamin B12.