High intake of processed meat could expose men to prostate cancer – Medical Officer

Research has linked high consumption of red meat and processed meat to increased risk of prostate cancer and prostate cancer mortality, Dr. Mrs. Anita Owusu-Afriyie, a Medical Officer, Oncology Unit, International Maritime Hospital (IMaH), has stated.

Dr. Mrs. Owusu-Afriyie has, therefore, cautioned people, especially men, to avoid eating too much meat, which is a risk factor to developing prostate cancer.

She explained that global studies suggested that eating red meat, such as beef, pork, and lamb as well as processed meat, such as sausage, hot dogs, bacon, ham, and luncheon increased the risk of developing prostate cancer.

Dr. Mrs. Owusu-Afriyie gave the caution at the maiden “Your Health! Our Concern! a Ghana News Agency initiative that seeks to provide health information to influence personal health choices by improving health literacy.

“Your Health! Our Concern! is a public health advocacy platform initiated by the Ghana News Agency to explore the parameters of the four approaches to health communication: informative, educating, persuasive, and prompting.

Dr. Mrs. Owusu-Afriyie added that high-temperature cooking methods such as grilling and barbequeing may produce heterocyclic amines and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons which are known carcinogens –a substance that causes cancer.

She explained that red meat which was associated with an increased risk of developing prostate cancer may be due to heterocyclic amines contained in it and advised men to reduce the high intake.

She noted that “reducing your intake of saturated fats may benefit your prostate and your overall health”.

Dr. Mrs. Owusu-Afriyie encouraged people especially men to consume more fruits and vegetables which are a great source of fibre, vitamins, and minerals to reduce the risk of developing prostate cancer.

She also encouraged the consumption of fish and plants instead of meat, suggesting that fish like salmon, tuna, mackerel, and herrings contained omega 3, which could lower the risk of developing prostate cancer.

Dr. Mrs. Owusu-Afriyie urged all men to go for regular prostate cancer screening or tests every year to know their status.

She advised men from families with prostate issues to go for screening every three months as a preventive factor.

Mr. Francis Ameyibor, Tema Regional Manager, Ghana News Agency, said information was key in guiding citizens about issues of health, saying the “Your Health! Our Concern” platform would help provide information to influence personal health choices and literacy.

“We must all be concerned about the health of some other person to develop a healthy society,” he said.

Source: GNA

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