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Health Tip: Preventing Prostate Cancer

Begin by improving your diet

(HealthDay News) -- Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men, with an estimated 220,000 new cases diagnosed each year in the United States. Though it usually grows slowly, prostate cancer can be deadly. About 29,000 American men die of prostate cancer each year.

To try to prevent the disease, the American Cancer Society recommends eating a variety of healthful foods such as fruits and vegetables, and limiting your intake of red meats, especially those high in fat or that are processed.

Tomato products, pink grapefruit and watermelon are rich in cancer-fighting substances called lycopenes. These vitamin-like chemicals are antioxidants that help prevent damage to DNA and may help lower prostate cancer risk.

It's not clear whether vitamin or mineral supplements have the same benefits, experts say. Some studies suggest that taking 50 milligrams (or 400 International Units) of vitamin E daily can lower your cancer risk. Selenium, a mineral, also may lower your chances of getting the disease.

On the other hand, vitamin A supplements may actually increase prostate cancer risk. If you are unsure about whether vitamins and supplements may be right for you, ask your doctor.

Consumer News