Supplemental Beta-Carotene is OK during Prostate Cancer Treatment

June 9, 2012 by  
Filed under Prostate Cancer News

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If you have been informed that Beta-Carotene (antioxidant) used in supplementary form increases death and metastases for prostate cancer, then you may have a rethink after going through this article.

A new study has refuted that notion and has declared that Beta-carotene is safe for use during prostate cancer radiation therapy treatment.

The result of the study carried out on 383 men over a 10 year period way published in the May Edition of the International Journal of Radiation Oncology. The following are more details on this new study:

The use of the antioxidant beta-carotene during radiation therapy treatment for prostate cancer is not associated with an increase in prostate cancer deaths or metastases, according to research published in the May issue of the International Journal of Radiation Oncology*Biology*Physics.

To investigate whether supplemental beta-carotene use during radiation therapy is associated with an increased risk of cancer death or metastases, Danielle N. Margalit, M.D., M.P.H., of the Harvard Radiation Oncology Program in Boston, and colleagues conducted a prospective, randomized study (as part of the larger Physicians’ Health Study) involving 383 men receiving radiation therapy for prostate cancer. Participants were randomly allocated to receive beta-carotene (50 mg on alternate days) or placebo and were followed for a median of 10.5 years.

The researchers found that there was no significant difference in the risk of lethal cancer in the beta-carotene group compared with the placebo group (hazard ratio, 0.72; P = 0.24). The difference remained nonsignificant after adjustment for confounding variables. In the beta-carotene and placebo groups, the 10-year freedom from lethal prostate cancer was 92 and 89 percent, respectively.

“In summary, our data show that the use of supplemental beta-carotene during radiation therapy at doses commonly found in nutritional supplements is not associated with the risk of prostate cancer death or metastases,” the authors write.

One of the authors disclosed financial ties to companies which manufacture nutritional supplements and to the California Strawberry Commission and Tomato Products Wellness Council. Source.

This new report on the safety of supplemental Beta-Carotene is quite interesting. At least, it has further highlighted the importance of taking more antioxidant in the body. The number men used in the study was on average and the mean period for the above study was quite okay.

However, it is still important to do more investigations to further prove the correlation between antioxidant and the metastases cancer of the prostate, as well as the survival rate of the patient.

Finally, the bottom line in the above study is that good nutrition rich with antioxidants like beta-carotene can go a long way to help relieve the symptoms of cancer of the prostate.

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