Nutritional Summary for Prostate Cancer

15% of your total daily calories should come from fat.

  • Eliminate butter, cheese and salad dressings containing oil or mayonnaise, and use nuts sparingly.

Consume one to two servings of fish weekly.

  • Avoid canned fish packed in oil.
  • Fish is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin D.
  • Use canned tuna fish, ocean-caught (not farmed) fish.

Drink green tea in place of soda.

  • If you are sensitive to caffeine, avoid green tea or try decaffeinated green tea

Consume 35 - 40 g of soy protein per day.

  • Make sure you are looking at the grams of soy protein on food labels, not the gram weight of the actual food.
  • Soy products include edamame (young soybeans), soy cheese, soybeans, soymilk, soy nuts, soy protein powder, soy yogurt, tempeh, tofu, soy cereals and soy meat substitutes.

Eat tomatoes and tomato products several times per week.

  • Consume 30 - 60 mg of lycopene (one of the strongest antioxidants found in nature) per day, which is one to two servings of tomatoes.
  • Get lycopene from natural food sources, such as tomato or mixed vegetable juice, tomato sauce and tomato soup.
  • Do not take a lycopene supplement!

Eat seven or more servings of fruit and vegetables per day, with an emphasis on a variety of colorful fruits and vegetables.

  • Fruits and vegetables are a good source of antioxidants.
  • Variety gives you a wide range of phytochemicals, which have different mechanisms for promoting good health.

Fiber intake should be between 25 - 35 g per day.

  • Good sources of fiber include fresh whole fruits and vegetables, whole grain breads and cereals and beans.

Supplements:

  • Helpful supplements may include a daily multivitamin (such as Centrum) without calcium and with at least 400 IU of vitamin D, 400 mcg folic acid and a variety of the B vitamins.
  • A selenium supplement is not recommended for prostate cancer treatment.
  • Avoid calcium supplements.

Important guidelines to remember:

  • Do not load up on large amounts of supplements. A tumor needs nutrition to grow. It is made up of tissue, just like the rest of your body.
  • Talk to your physician when undergoing specific treatments for prostate cancer, such as a radical prostatectomy, radiation and hormone ablation treatment. Your nutritional needs may change prior to, during or following these procedures. For example, high levels of vitamin E may make your blood thinner. This could cause problems during surgery.
  • This information is not meant to be static. The field of nutrition and cancer is changing at a very rapid pace. We recommend frequent discussions of these issues with your physician.

Acknowledgements

The Louis Warschaw Prostate Cancer Center would like to thank Megan Tomczak and Chip Reuben for the preparation of this nutritional information. In addition, we would especially like to thank David Heber, MD, PhD, and his associates of the UCLA Center for Human Nutrition for contributing to this information.