Overweight and taller men are significantly more likely to die from prostate cancer, according to new research by the Cancer Epidemiology Unit at Oxford University.
The research, which has been published in the open access journal BMC Medicine, was based on data from 141,896 men in eight countries from the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition cohort, and included a total of 7,024 prostate cancer cases.
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men in Europe and the second most frequently diagnosed cancer in men worldwide.
The results showed an 18 per cent greater risk of death from prostate cancer and a 13 per cent greater risk of high grade cancer with every 10 cm increase in waist circumference.
The research also found that while height was not associated with overall prostate cancer risk, the risk of high grade disease increased by 21 per cent and the risk of death from prostate cancer increased by 17 per cent with every additional 10 cm in height.
The study’s lead author, Dr. Aurora Perez-Cornago, said ‘There is nothing men can do about their height but at least it is now more evident that they may reduce their risk of aggressive prostate cancer by having a healthy weight. However, further research is still needed to understand possible mechanisms, such as hormonal alterations, and to establish whether the associations we have seen are causal.’