Lo-Cal Diet Slows Prostate Cancer In Animals, New Research Finds

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- A low-calorie diet slows the progress of prostate cancer in animals, new research shows. The slowing of tumor progression occurred whether the calories were reduced by cutting fat, carbohydrates, or the overall diet.

The results further suggested the way that the lower-calorie diet slowed tumor growth in rats and mice -- it retarded the development of new blood vessels in the tumor. "This study clearly demonstrated in two different animal models that energy intake influences the growth of prostate tumors," said Steven Clinton, director of cancer prevention and control at the Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center, Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute.

"Our findings provide further evidence that prostate-cancer development might be influenced by lifestyle. They also suggest that maintaining a proper energy balance -- an appropriate weight for height -- may inhibit the progression of prostate cancer."

In addition, these results will help clinical investigators design studies of the relationship between diet and prostate cancer in humans.

The paper by Clinton and a team of researchers appeared in the March 15 issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute. It involved three sets of experiments, two using rats and one using mice.

In the first set of experiments, malignant cells from a form of rat prostate cancer were transplanted into four groups of cancer-free rats. One group of rats was allowed to eat as much as desired. Castrated rats made up a second group that was also allowed to eat freely. The third and fourth groups were fed diets containing 20 percent and 40 percent fewer calories, respectively, than the groups with restricted diets.


Contact: Steven Clinton
Ohio State University

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