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Men’s Health Supplements Not All They’re Cracked Up to Be

When it comes to reducing the odds of developing prostate cancer or beating the disease if it’s present, supplements may not work the miracles many men believe they can. Researchers have found, in fact, that men’s health supplements play no significant role in lowering risk of metastasis for those who are battling this form of cancer.
Prostate cancer strikes an estimated 220,000 American men each year. Some 27,500 men die from the disease annually, according to the American Cancer Society. Many of those diagnosed with the disease incorporate supplements into their lives to help reduce cancer’s effects. Studies, however, have shown that supplements like saw palmetto have little to no impact on the disease. What’s more is that some supplements may actually lower the benefits of cancer treatments, such as radiation and chemo, essentially doing more harm than good.

One of the more recent studies into the topic was conducted by the Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia. There doctors looked at 2,207 men who were treated with IMRT for localized prostate cancer. Of these men, about 10 percent reported using supplements, most especially saw palmetto, along with their treatments. Researchers found at the five-year mark, there was no lower risk for metastasis in men who took supplements versus those who did not.
The bottom line, researchers noted, was that men’s health supplements can impede successful treatments in some cases and provide false hope in others. To avoid issues with treatment, men are urged to discuss all products consumed during prostate cancer treatment with their healthcare providers. Even basic, over the counter, nutritional supplements may cause more harm than good during cancer treatments. With that in mind, it’s best to check before taking.

Men who are diagnosed with prostate cancer will find there are a host of treatments available to them. The best bet for beating the disease will depend on a man’s distinct case. Regardless, the use of any vitamins or supplements during prostate cancer treatment should be reviewed by a healthcare provider.

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