Navigation Links
Folic Acid Supplements Raise Prostate Cancer Risk
Date:3/10/2009

But 10-year study also showed having enough folate in diet might offer protection

TUESDAY, March 10 (HealthDay News) -- A 10-year study has found that men who took folic acid supplements faced more than twice the risk of prostate cancer as those who didn't take the supplements.

But the incidence of prostate cancer in the study was slightly lower in men who simply got adequate amounts of folate in their diet, according to a report in the March 10 online issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

"What we think is that perhaps too much folate is not necessarily beneficial, whereas adequate levels may be," said study leader Jan Figueiredo, an assistant professor of preventive medicine at the University of Southern California.

Folic acid is a synthetic version of folate, a basic nutrient found in green, leafy vegetables. In the study, which followed 643 men for slightly more than a decade, the estimated prostate cancer risk was 9.7 percent for the men who took the daily 1-milligram supplements, and 3.3 percent for men who took a placebo.

"Folate plays an important role in cell growth and division, and cancer cells often uprate their folate receptors," Figueiredo noted. "Folic acid, the synthetic version, has more bioavailability, meaning that the effective dose in the cell is higher than what you get from natural sources."

Dietary sources of folic acid in the United States now include cereals and other grain products. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has required folic acid enrichment of those foods since 1996, in part to reduce the incidence of birth defects affecting development of the central nervous system.

"Since we fortified, the amount of folate we consume from fortified foods is probably more than sufficient," Figueiredo said.

The newly reported results resemble those of a study done several years ago by Victoria Stevens, strategic director of laboratory services at the American Cancer Society, who specializes in research on folate metabolism.

That study of folate intake and prostate cancer "found that it really didn't have much effect," Stevens said. "Our study actually suggested that folate might be protective for men with advanced prostate cancer, a group that wasn't included in this study."

Overall, "it's a pretty complicated picture," Stevens said. "Previous epidemiological evidence suggests that not having enough folate can be bad, but having an excess might not be good. You need to have adequate folate nutrition. But it doesn't get better if you have more, and it may get worse."

The study is the latest to throw cold water on the hope that supplements can reduce the risk of cancer. Two studies reported late last year that supplements containing selenium, vitamin E and vitamin C had no effect on the incidence of prostate cancer.

One of those studies included more than 35,000 men aged 50 and over who were followed for more than five years, and the other included almost 15,000 male physicians aged 50 and over who were followed for an average of eight years.

"It is safe to conclude that cancer prevention is not going to be as simple as recommending high-dose micronutrient supplements for middle-aged and older adults," said an editorial accompanying the latest report.

Detailed studies to understand how diet and supplements affect biological mechanisms of cancer in humans are needed, as well as large-scale epidemiological studies looking for ways in which diet can reduce risk, according to the editorial by Alan Kristal of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle and Dr. Scott Lippman of the M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston.

"There is no evidence that supplements of any type reduce cancer risk, and increasing evidence that they may increase the risk for some cancers in some people," said Kristal, who is a professor of epidemiology and associate director of the cancer prevention program at Fred Hutchinson. "The only exception is calcium for recurrence of colorectal polyps, where there is solid evidence that calcium can reduce risk."

More information

Learn about prostate cancer prevention from the U.S. National Cancer Institute.



SOURCES: Jane Figueiredo, Ph.D., assistant professor, preventive medicine, University of Southern California, Los Angeles; Victoria Stevens, Ph.D., strategic director, laboratory services, American Cancer Society, Atlanta; Alan Kristal, Dr.PH, professor, epidemiology, and associate director, cancer prevention program, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle; March 10, 2009, Journal of the National Cancer Institute, online


'/>"/>
Copyright©2009 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. New Survey Reveals Majority of Women of Child-Bearing Age Unaware Folic Acid Should Be Consumed Before Pregnancy
2. Folic acid survey of Spanish-speaking women finds most are missing benefits, March of Dimes says
3. First Nationwide Folic Acid Survey of Spanish-Speaking Women Finds Most Are Missing Benefits, March of Dimes Says
4. USA Rice Federation Partners with National Council on Folic Acid to Promote National Folic Acid Awareness Week
5. Brides-To-Be Should Say I Do to a Daily Multivitamin With Folic Acid
6. Study Finds Folic Acid Not Cardioprotective, Though Safe
7. Folic acid, B vitamins do not appear to affect cancer risk
8. Folic Acid and Other B Vitamins Wont Help Prevent Cancer
9. Folic Acid Doesnt Help the Heart
10. Folic Acid in the Food Supply Reduces Birth Defects, but May Cause Extra Cancers, Reports the Harvard Womens Health Watch
11. Folic Acid May Help Prevent Premature Birth
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Folic Acid Supplements Raise Prostate Cancer Risk
(Date:12/9/2016)... ... December 09, 2016 , ... "I have gout, and I wanted ... family recipe, which is meant to relieve gout and pain caused by varicose veins. ... energy boost every time. It relieved what VA doctors called the worst sinusitis case ...
(Date:12/9/2016)... ... December 09, 2016 , ... The ... Hotel in New York, NY, on December 3rd, to benefit Holy Name Medical ... the annual event, which raised over $1 million - the largest event in ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... ... December 08, 2016 , ... The Florida Hospital ... and Hyperbaric Medical Society (UHMS), the leading authority in hyperbaric medicine. This accreditation ... a few hospitals and facilities have earned this distinction. This is the second ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... ... December 08, 2016 , ... Mirixa Corporation , ... and other pharmacist-delivered patient care services, has announced the promotions of Karen Litsinger ... vice president of sales. , Litsinger joined Mirixa in 2008 after serving ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... ... December 08, 2016 , ... SunView Software aims to ... that are both engaging and easy to use. Coming off the heels of ... revealed today its plans to roll out new AI-powered self-service enhancements to help ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:12/9/2016)... 9, 2016 Research and Markets has ... Forecast to 2021" report to their offering. ... Market growth ... models in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry and technological advancements ... funding. Emerging markets and growing research activities in toxicology and ...
(Date:12/9/2016)... -- RxWiki Inc., a digital health company that powers the ... of pharmacies through its Digital Pharmacist SaaS platform, today ... on Fire" Award in the Health and Life Sciences ... award as one of Austin,s fastest growing companies," said ... "Our platform gives independent retail pharmacies the digital tools ...
(Date:12/9/2016)... SAN DIEGO , Dec. 9, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... with Evotec AG (Frankfurt Stock Exchange: EVT, TecDAX, ... program targeting ,LpxC, for the treatment of bacterial ... LpxC has been recognized as an attractive antibacterial ... however, a lack of suitable chemical starting points ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: