Calcium for Prostate Cancer

General Information

Calcium is the most abundant mineral in the human body (99% is found in bones). It is vital for the growth, maintenance and reproduction of the body. Calcium has numerous functions, which include proper heart function and the stimulation of hormone secretion. Calcium can be found in dairy products, dark green leafy vegetables, grains, nuts and beans.

Food Sources of Calcium

Medical Research/Studies

One study has indicated that large amounts of calcium of more than 2,000 mg per day were associated with an increased risk for prostate cancer compared with lower calcium intakes. However, other studies have shown that calcium does not affect prostate cancer progression. For example, a study by the National Cancer Institute demonstrated that calcium had no clear association with prostate cancer progression. At this time, more research needs to be done on the effects of calcium on prostate cancer. The evidence linking calcium and prostate cancer progression is weak and controversial, and intakes in the range of 500-1,000 mg per day appear to be safe and are needed to maintain bone health.

Urology Center Recommendations

  • Avoid supplements containing calcium, including antacids.
  • Make sure that you choose low-calcium soy protein powders.
  • Read labels, as many foods such as cereals and fruit juices are now calcium-fortified.
  • If you have advanced prostate cancer, you may or may not benefit from a low-calcium diet. Hormone treatment of advanced prostate cancer accelerates bone loss. However, some doctors have found that calcium may make cancer worse. In conclusion, it is best to consult with your physician.
  • Obtain 500 - 1000mg per day of calcium from natural food sources. Do not exceed 1000 mg of calcium per day.

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