Presentations show impact of alcohol, diet on urologic disease

May 22, 2006

New studies on the impact of diet, smoking, and water and alcoholconsumption on urologic health were featured at a press briefingyesterday moderated by Mark Moyad, MD, of the University ofMichigan, Ann Arbor. The news was generally good for alcohol and ahigh-fat, low-carbohydrate diet, but bad for vegetable oil and eventap water.

New studies on the impact of diet, smoking, and water and alcohol consumption on urologic health were featured at a press briefing yesterday moderated by Mark Moyad, MD, of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. The news was generally good for alcohol and a high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet, but bad for vegetable oil and even tap water.

BPH/LUTS

Men who regularly consume alcohol are less likely to develop irritative lower urinary tract symptoms than those who claim they never drink. Men who reported having six drinks per week had lower International Prostate Symptom scores, higher peak urinary flow rates, and were more sexually active than their non-drinking counterparts regardless of age, body mass index, PSA level, and prostate volume.

"Don't tell your patients they shouldn't drink alcohol because it will make their BPH symptoms worse. It's not founded on evidence," said lead author Claus Roehrborn, MD, of the University of Texas Southwestern, Dallas.

Prostate cancer

In a study of mice inoculated with human prostate cancer cells, those randomized to a low-carbohydrate, high-fat diet had lower serum insulin, IGF-1, and IGFBP3 levels, resulting in significantly lower tumor volumes than those on a high-carbohydrate, high-fat diet.

"If these findings are confirmed in clinical trials, this diet may play a role in decreasing the growth of prostate cancer," said study co-author Vasundara Venkateswaran, PhD, of the University of Toronto, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Center.

Changes in American diets since the 1930s strongly correlated with an increase in prostate cancer deaths during that time. A review of data from 1930 to 2000 found that as Americans increased their consumption of meat, added fats and oils, ice cream, margarine, salad/cooking oil, and vegetable shortening, prostate cancer mortality rates rose.

"This country shifted from animal to vegetable fat, thinking it was bad for the heart," said investigator Jan Colli, MD, of the University of Alabama, Birmingham, "but it may be worse from the perspective of prostate cancer."

Bladder cancer

Is drinking water source a risk factor for bladder cancer?

A study from Italy examined current or previous cigarette smokers and nonsmokers and their drinking water source. It found that low-stage bladder cancer tumors were more frequent in patients who did not drink bottled water. In nonsmokers, the water source became an even more significant potential risk factor for bladder cancer, reported study author Vincenzo Serretta, MD, of the Gruppo Studi Tumori Urologici Foundation, Palermo.