TUESDAY, Oct. 25, 2011 (HealthDay News) -- Men who drink plenty of low-sugar fluids may reduce their risk for bladder cancer, new research suggests.
Although the reason for the association between fluid intake and protection against cancer remains unknown, researchers theorize the fluids may flush out potential cancer-causing agents before they have a chance to cause any damage.
In conducting the study, Jiachen Zhou, a doctoral candidate in epidemiology at Brown University, and colleagues evaluated the fluid intake of nearly 48,000 men who were part of a long-term study. The men, who were aged 40 to 75 when they enrolled in the study in 1986, answered a questionnaire about their fluid intake every four years for more than two decades.
The investigators found that the men with a high daily fluid intake, or those who drank more than 10 cups (2,531 milliliters) per day, had a 24 percent reduced risk for bladder cancer. The study authors concluded that doctors should tell their patients to drink plenty of low-sugar fluids.
Although this link between fluid intake and bladder cancer risk was discovered 10 years ago, the association, the study found, was stronger among younger men. This could be due to the fact that the men drank less as they aged, particularly water, the researchers pointed out in a news release from the American Association for Cancer Research.
The study findings -- which revealed an association between fluid consumption and reduced cancer risk, but not a cause-and-effect -- were slated for presentation Oct. 24 at the AACR International Conference on Frontiers in Cancer Prevention Research, in Boston. Research presented at medical meetings should be viewed as preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed journal.
The U.S. National Cancer Institute has more about bladder cancer.