A nutritional supplement that apparently lowers the male PSA level may possibly help fight prostate cancer, according to a study from the UK.
Prostate cancer is a disorder that develops in the prostate, a gland in the male reproductive system. In some cases, cancer cells may metastasize to other parts of the body. It is the second most common cancer among males according to the World Health Organization.
The double-blind study consisted of about 200 males with prostate cancer divided into two groups, one which took the supplement containing green tea, pomegranate, turmeric, and broccoli, and another which just took a placebo.
After six months of taking three capsules a day, researchers found that prostate-specific antigen levels were almost 64 percent lower in the supplement group as opposed to their placebo counterparts.
The findings were presented at the 2013 Annual Meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology. According to oncologist Robert Thomas, the study’s lead investigator, “Previous research has shown that the polyphenols and antioxidants in pomegranate, broccoli, green tea, and turmeric have individual anticancer properties, but ‘we believe there’s a synergistic effect in the supplement.’ ”
Added Dr Thomas: “Our experience in offering high-quality clinical care, collaboration with cancer charities and world-class research with the University of Cambridge has resulted in findings which will have a worldwide impact. We hope this will help millions of men to help combat the onset of prostate cancer … Healthy eating and lifestyle is the main way of helping to combat the development of cancer but men can now also turn to a whole food supplement which has been shown to work.”
The commercially available supplement used in the study is called Pomi-T; this research reportedly was not funded by the supplement manufacturer.
It should be noted that the healthcare community is somewhat divided about the PSA test. Individuals with prostate cancer have “have higher and rising blood-PSA levels” but “some patients may have higher-than-normal PSA levels and no malignancy.”
According to Cancer Research UK, the lifetime risk of developing prostate cancer will rise from five percent in 1990 to 14 percent in 2015. Upon learning of the results of this particular study, Prostate Cancer UK seemed less than enamored with the findings, however, “We would not encourage any man with prostate cancer to start taking Pomi-T food supplements on the basis of this research. Anyone with any concerns about prostate cancer should discuss them with their doctor or call Prostate Cancer UK’s helpline,” said Kate Holmes, MD, head of research.
Additional clinical trials are planned using the supplement for men with different stages of prostate cancer and for cancer prevention among other things according to Dr. Thomas.