senior couple walking on the beach

October is Prostate Cancer Awareness month. Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer among males in the United States, right behind skin cancer. In the US alone, it is estimated that over 180,000 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2016 alone. Men who are 55 and older are more likely to be diagnosed with prostate cancer than those who are 45 and younger.  Like almost any cancer, there is nothing you can do that will guarantee prevention, but there are some actions you can take to reduce the risk of prostate cancer.

Get an Annual Check-up

Diagnosing prostate cancer early on can greatly improve your chances of treating it. Having yearly check-ups with your doctor, especially as you age, is essential.

Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle

Maintaining a healthy and active life style is essential to reducing the risk of prostate cancer. Research shows that one of the most effective ways to help reduce the risk of prostate cancer is to have a healthy diet. Here are a few healthy lifestyle adjustments you can make:

  • Avoid fatty red meats.
  • Avoid smoking or quit if you currently smoke.
  • Eat fish for the Omega 3s. It provides healthy fats which protect the prostate.
  • Seek medical treatment for stress, anxiety, high blood pressure, or cholesterol.
  • Increase the amount of fruits and vegetable you eat each day.
  • Maintain a healthy weight.
  • Eat tomatoes, watermelon and other red foods. These foods have proven to put men at lower risk of prostate cancer due to an antioxidant called Lycopene.

Regular Exercise 

Having a regular exercise routine is another way to help reduce the risk of prostate cancer. Not only will exercising regularly help prevent disease, it is also a huge benefit to your mental and emotional health. A good rule of thumb for your exercise routine is at least 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week. The specific type of exercise can vary from person to person depending on their overall health and abilities. Whether you are a swimmer, a runner or just a walker, it doesn’t matter; the important thing is that you’re active and healthy.

If you haven’t had a prostate screening recently, contact your doctor to schedule an appointment. Attending regular screenings will help to prevent prostate cancer or catch it at an early stage. The earlier you can catch prostate cancer the more treatable it will be. By maintaining a healthy diet, an active lifestyle and attending regular doctor’s appointments, you can help to reduce your risk of prostate cancer and live a long and healthy life.