Changing a Man’s Diet After a Prostate Cancer Diagnosis

Changing a Man’s Diet After a Prostate Cancer Diagnosis
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Might appeals to masculinity and manhood help men with prostate cancer change their diet to improve their survival?


A cancer diagnosis is seen as a teachable moment where we can try to get people to eat healthier, but research suggests that male cancer patients in particular may be reluctant to introduce dietary modification. This has been attributed to dietary modifications often being viewed as mimicking “feminine” eating behaviors, such as emphasizing an increase in fruit and vegetables. 

Although healthy eating might enhance long-term survival, few men with prostate cancer make diet changes to advance their well-being. Many of the cancer survival trials require adherence to strict, plant-based diets, and though researchers tried providing extensive nutrition education and counseling programs, dietary adherence was still a challenge.

The only way Dean Ornish was apparently able to reverse the progression of prostate cancer with a plant-based diet was home delivering prepared meals to their door, figuring men are so lazy they’ll just eat whatever’s put in front of them.  After all, male culture tends to encourage men to eat convenience food and meat, and drink beer.

Take Men’s Health magazine, for example. Included in the list of things men should never apologize for: liking McDonald’s, not offering a vegetarian alternative, and laughing at people who eat trail mix.

It features articles with titles like, “Vegetables Are for Girls,” and sections like “Men and Meat: There’s Only One Kind of Flesh We Like Better, and Even Then, She’d Better Know How to Grill!”

To appeal to male sensibilities, doctors are advised to use ‘body as machine’ metaphors, framing men’s health in terms of mechanical objects, such as cars, requiring tuning. But if men are so concerned about their masculinity and manhood, maybe we should instead share a bit about what prostate cancer treatment entails. The prostate is situated at the base of the penis, and so when you core it out with a radical prostatectomy, you lose about an inch off your penis, if it gets erect at all. Only 16% of men undergoing the procedure will regain their pre-surgery level of erectile functioning.

Patients are typically quoted erectile dysfunction rates around 60% or 70%, but studies have generally considered erectile function recovery as just the ability to maintain an erection hard enough for penetration about 50% of the time; so, getting it up occasionally is considered recovery, but when a surgeon tells patients they will recover function, the patients probably assume that means the kind of function they had prior to surgery  And that only happens 16% of the time,  and only 4% of the time in men over 60. Only 1 in 25 gets their baseline sexual function back.

And it’s not just erections, but other problems like orgasm-associated pain even years later and urinary incontinence during foreplay, stimulation, or orgasm. The vast majority of couples overestimate how much function they’re going to recover. Couples reported feeling loss and grief. Having cancer is bad enough without the additional losses. You’d think that would be enough to motivate men to improve their diets, but almost a fourth of the men newly diagnosed with prostate cancer state they would prefer to have their lives cut short rather than living with a diet that prohibits beef and pork. More men would rather be impotent than improve their diet. It appears pleasures of the flesh may sometimes trump… pleasures of the flesh.

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by Katie Schloer.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image thanks to TaniaVdB via Pixabay

A cancer diagnosis is seen as a teachable moment where we can try to get people to eat healthier, but research suggests that male cancer patients in particular may be reluctant to introduce dietary modification. This has been attributed to dietary modifications often being viewed as mimicking “feminine” eating behaviors, such as emphasizing an increase in fruit and vegetables. 

Although healthy eating might enhance long-term survival, few men with prostate cancer make diet changes to advance their well-being. Many of the cancer survival trials require adherence to strict, plant-based diets, and though researchers tried providing extensive nutrition education and counseling programs, dietary adherence was still a challenge.

The only way Dean Ornish was apparently able to reverse the progression of prostate cancer with a plant-based diet was home delivering prepared meals to their door, figuring men are so lazy they’ll just eat whatever’s put in front of them.  After all, male culture tends to encourage men to eat convenience food and meat, and drink beer.

Take Men’s Health magazine, for example. Included in the list of things men should never apologize for: liking McDonald’s, not offering a vegetarian alternative, and laughing at people who eat trail mix.

It features articles with titles like, “Vegetables Are for Girls,” and sections like “Men and Meat: There’s Only One Kind of Flesh We Like Better, and Even Then, She’d Better Know How to Grill!”

To appeal to male sensibilities, doctors are advised to use ‘body as machine’ metaphors, framing men’s health in terms of mechanical objects, such as cars, requiring tuning. But if men are so concerned about their masculinity and manhood, maybe we should instead share a bit about what prostate cancer treatment entails. The prostate is situated at the base of the penis, and so when you core it out with a radical prostatectomy, you lose about an inch off your penis, if it gets erect at all. Only 16% of men undergoing the procedure will regain their pre-surgery level of erectile functioning.

Patients are typically quoted erectile dysfunction rates around 60% or 70%, but studies have generally considered erectile function recovery as just the ability to maintain an erection hard enough for penetration about 50% of the time; so, getting it up occasionally is considered recovery, but when a surgeon tells patients they will recover function, the patients probably assume that means the kind of function they had prior to surgery  And that only happens 16% of the time,  and only 4% of the time in men over 60. Only 1 in 25 gets their baseline sexual function back.

And it’s not just erections, but other problems like orgasm-associated pain even years later and urinary incontinence during foreplay, stimulation, or orgasm. The vast majority of couples overestimate how much function they’re going to recover. Couples reported feeling loss and grief. Having cancer is bad enough without the additional losses. You’d think that would be enough to motivate men to improve their diets, but almost a fourth of the men newly diagnosed with prostate cancer state they would prefer to have their lives cut short rather than living with a diet that prohibits beef and pork. More men would rather be impotent than improve their diet. It appears pleasures of the flesh may sometimes trump… pleasures of the flesh.

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by Katie Schloer.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image thanks to TaniaVdB via Pixabay

Doctor's Note

Did I say reverse the progression of cancer? See Cancer Reversal Through Diet.

More on prostate cancer prevention and survival in Prostate Cancer Survival: The A/V Ratio and Prostate Cancer and Organic Milk vs. Almond Milk.

Update: In 2017, I released two important videos on prostate cancer. Treating Advanced Prostate Cancer with Diet Part 1 and Part 2

More on maintaining male sexual function in:

If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my videos for free by clicking here.

148 responses to “Changing a Man’s Diet After a Prostate Cancer Diagnosis

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  1. “almost a fourth of the men newly diagnosed with prostate cancer state they would prefer to have their lives cut short rather than living with a diet that prohibits beef and pork”

    I was a practicing alcoholic for 20 years. When someone I worked with told me the way I lived, I’d be dead before reaching 50 years old. I responded “Fine. I don’t want to have to take care of a broken down old man”. I was willing to die young rather than give up booze.

    July 5th is my 28th anniversary sober. I am now 62. I have a slightly different view of accepting death at 50 rather than getting sober. In fact, what I have learned about nutritional science, I now tell people I am retooling for the 2nd half of my life.

    So I understand the omnivores’ obsession with eating dead animal flesh better than most. But I also know what it is like to experience freedom from addiction. I don’t try to stay sober. I have no interest in drinking. It is possible. And I am always willing to share with others my experience and hope.

    4 years ago I started the same process with poor eating habits, and 3 years ago focused study on nutritional science. Health-wise, I was a train wreck waiting to hit a wall with multiple chronic diseases, which are all reversing according to medical examination feedback. It’s still a work in progress. But having looked into the abyss a second time and survived, I find the same thing is happening. I don’t miss the junk food, and the many benefits of eating healthy serve as their own reward.

    There is hope for those who would accept premature death over letting go of an addiction.

    1. Great story – mine is similar. I couldn’t tell mine more eloquently than that, suffice it to say that as a ribs loving, booze swilling young man I actually found the abyss much less challenging than I had anticipated both regarding getting off of booze and going vegan. Actually freeing oneself from the standard culturally sanctioned forms of “enjoyment” (some of which were described in the video) is really liberating and helpful re. fairly rapid evaporation of the dread. And for me, maintaining a sense of humor has also been important in dealing with the feelings of cultural isolation and inevitable pushback from a subset of friends and acquaintances.

    2. This is such a great analogy. I am a woman a bit younger than you but also struggled with addictions and have been WFPB for decades. I ran a small animal sanctuary for many years and saw the parallels between the struggle to encourage compassion in people in giving up their gender-based obsession with brutalizing animals. The mechanisms of addiction and the ego involvement in seeing yourself as a carnivore have some similar bases. It’s really encouraging to see such thoughtful responses to Dr. Greger’s evidence-based videos and so many people willing to use this information in their own lives..

    3. I am so impressed! Since so many people respond the same as you initially did and either don’t believe or don’t want to believe or just don’t want to hear the facts, what changed for you? What “woke” you up? I work in the health field and find people are not interested for whatever reason in hearing facts that are different than the lobbyist tell them.

    4. It is like a cascade. You take a big step, then you catch sight of another step and each one leads you down a path until you find a valid teacher like Dr Greger who is quite blunt about fact and fiction. After a while you not only see the bunk on the meat eating side but the massive bunk on the plant based side. A friend of mine, 35, fighting breast cancer died 4 days ago precipitating her death after a 2 week “cleanse” depleting herself of fluid, electrolytes, and vital nutrients. We have to keep our glasses clean and stick with the truth as there are charlatans on the plant based side as well trying to make a buck without true science. Our liver, kidneys and bacteria are all the cleanse we need along with good food. I’m glad there are people like Dr Greger, Dr Barnard, Colin T Campbell PhD,etc. to keep us going in the right direction. My dad, 3 grandparents, and uncle died of alcoholism and I know how hard quitting is. You should be extremely proud how far you have come.

      1. Tremendous family support and my love of sports really helped. Daily meditation for years stopped me lying and kidding myself. When you sit still everything comes up. You can do this atheist, Buddhist or belong to any other religion.

  2. I don’t think it’s too widely known that a WFPB diet can REVERSE prostate cancer. Dean Ornish’s work needs to get some major publicity. With this video’s reminder that the male ego is strongly attached to meat, I’m grateful that my husband doesn’t think it feminine to eat fruit, veggies and beans. Real men eat their vegetables!

    1. Attractive to men too ;) In all seriousness though, I’m thankful that for me, as a gay man, I had very little ego/gender identity issues tied to eating meat or having compassion towards animals. Once I learned the realities of both – I went vegan, literally overnight. It’s quite frustrating to me to try to have these discussions with men who are so emotionally tied to the meat = maleness idea…but still worth it to try!

    2. Men (at least cis-gender/hetro) act all macho because they think that is what it takes to impress the ladies. Really they act all “manly” to impress/intimidate other men as a hierarchy display common to males in most social species. I’m old enough to be well past rutting age and so actually stopped and asked real women (as opposed to the cartoon image of women the manly men seem to be posturing to) what they find attractive in a guy. The ability of a man to eat large amounts of meat doesn’t seem to be very high on the list. Higher up the list seem to be things like being empathetic and kind.

      I remember in high school one guy was always really popular with the girls. Never lacked for a date, and usually the prettiest girl in our class. At the time I could never understand why. After all I knew for a fact that I could bench press twice what he could. He often sat with a group of girls at lunch rather than with us guys. And when I eavesdropped to find out what he was talking about so I could maybe to that to, he seemed to always be talking about “girl” stuff, never about interesting stuff like how many horsepower his car engine had or the time he beat the crap of some other guy because, well, just because. Looking back on it I find it amazing that guys ever manage to survive adolescence and young adulthood and find a partner. Maybe the girls/women just gave up and decided to take pity on us stupid knuckledragger types.

      1. We select for intelligence, otherwise our species would resemble other apes (with far more pronounced sexual dimorphism) like gorillas and orangutans, where the selection was done by strength, fighting among males.

        In our species the selection was done by females, we are the weakest ape per weight, but I don’t think anyone would like to be any of those other species. See where they are vs where we are. ;)

        At the end of the day, nothing is more attractive than an intelligent person. We aren’t attracted to the idiot, the base or the brute.

    1. I remember watching a Dr McDougall video on this topic on youtube in which he goes through the various treatments and outcomes. They were all about the same in terms of consequences and results.

    2. George, I was active in cancer research as a patient advocate a coupe of decades ago and my recollection is that both have consequences, but there are different side effects to radiation compared to radical prostatectomy. Radiation leaves behind incontinence, both urinary and bowel more often while radical prostatectomy results in impotence more often.

      1. Perhaps a doctor can weigh in, but I believe your information is outdated. There are other options, such as targeted temporary radiation treatments (brachytherapy), proton therapy, and robotic surgery. While each does have different side effects and outcomes, anyone contemplating treatment should investigate all options in light of newer forms of treatment. However, a healthy diet is still the best for prevention and possible reversal at certain stages.

        1. Brachytherapy is the form of radiation to which I refer. I have no knowledge of the side effects of proton therapy or robotic surgery although I suspect that the side effects of these two strategies would be less impactful. As someone who has eaten ‘plant strong’ for five years, I heartily agree with you about diet.

        2. The Gerson therapy and Budwig protocols used calf liver juice or cottage cheese which is rich in phosphorus. It is possible that phosphorus is a treatment for cancer. Phosphorus is the second most abundant mineral in the body. That means it is important. A deficiency is possible.

    3. I think that switching to a WFPBD will improve your overall health in addition to the specific effect on prostate or other cancers. As an MD, I have seen people fear death from their cancer for years only to die from heart disease or some other medical cause prematurely. Nothing guarantees long term survival but you can give yourself the best chance and improve the quality of your whole life through dietary and other lifestyle changes. I think reducing stress is very important and this can be done through appropriate exercise(based upon your present health status), prayer or meditation based upon your belief system, and meeting with long term survivors. I recall initially feeling totally hopeless when I learned of the true extent of my cancer, but meeting with a long term survivor who essentially had the same initial prognosis as myself by itself showed me that it was possible. He also encouraged me to make the lifestyle changes I have made in addition to pursuing mainstream care. Finally, I can’t overstate the importance of focusing on loving relationships. Many studies in many arenas have shown that love, friendships, and pets can improve longevity. Good luck.

    1. I’m not sure it’s that simple. That behavior shows up in your health care costs (perhaps somewhat ironically as some of the big meat eaters complain bitterly about having to contribute to the cost of roads, schools,…).

      1. I don’t mean that doctors shouldn’t make the effort to help them change their diet, but if they refuse because..meat! I say the hell with the miserable turds.

      1. Agree with me what? I am talking about the macho peckerwoods who would rather die than give up meat. I am saying I feel no sorrow for their deaths.

        1. Well, I’m sure their are plenty who will feel no sorrow for your death either, even though I sense you consider yourself a superior human being to most of us knuckle draggers. But no matter how superior you think you are, and no matter how much you are convinced about the superiority of being vegan, you are still going to die of some disease sooner or later. At best, you will hopefully by yourself a few months or years, but you won’t get out alive. 26% lower rates of mortality fron heart disease is not 100%, and vegans still have plenty of struggles with cancer. The studies are not yet conclusive and sometimes conflict. Here is one from Imperial Cancer Research Fund, Cancer Epidemiology Unit, Oxford, United Kingdom as printed in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition:

          “Further categorization of diets showed that, in comparison with regular
          meat eaters, mortality from ischemic heart disease was 20% lower in
          occasional meat eaters, 34% lower in people who ate fish but not meat,
          34% lower in lactoovovegetarians, and 26% lower in vegans. There were no
          significant differences between vegetarians and nonvegetarians in
          mortality from cerebrovascular disease, stomach cancer, colorectal
          cancer, lung cancer, breast cancer, prostate cancer, or all other causes

          1. Bill, that was a foolish retort. There will likely be seven billion people who will feel no sorrow at my death, since they know nothing of my existence. And so you are telling me something startling here? That eventually I will die? Did you think I believe veganism confers immortality?
            Here’s the story, morning glory-even if veganism conferred NO significant health benefits, I would still refrain from eating dead animals. I choose not to be part of the horror of animal torture and slaughter. I choose not to contribute to the destruction and waste of our environment in order to torture and slaughter sentient beings. You can crawl back under your rock now .

  3. I can confirm Mr. Gregers words. I have had 3 Patient with prostata cancer – in Germany it isn’t allowed to cure prostata cancer for an alternative practitioner like me, we can only do accompanying measures – but all of them avoid food changes. What do I have from life, when I have cancer and change my food? Has been the most issue. Even the accompanying women said: Oh, we already eat so healthy – we are eating only 3 or 4 time per week animal products…
    May be it is also a issue of how old the patients are – in Germany we say: Eating is the sex of the age… and most of the patients I know are over 65. Counting 1 to 1, I guess, they have lose the fun for sex years before prostata cancer was diagnosed – because of clogging arteries? So, for this people is eating more important then having sex again?

    1. Diagnosed with prostate cancer at 67 over a year ago eventually led me to this website via advice on a prostate cancer blog. Convinced by the evidence provided by Dr. Greger I have been vegan now for over three months and I feel great. My blood pressure, cholesterol, weight, and PSA have dropped – much to my primary care physician’s amazement. He even asked me for some nutrition guidance on his own behalf! Do I miss meat, dairy, chicken, eggs, and cheese? You bet – but I am firmly resolved to this major life decision. Thank God for this revelation and in retirement the time necessary to shop, prepare, and try recipes involving whole foods. No matter what I will die with my prostate.

      1. Wise decision! I laud your good sense. I can tell you, as a 69 year old vegan, watch some of the factory farm and slaughterhouse videos on PETA and other vegan sites and you will miss animal flesh and products a whole lot less.

        1. I agree for myself that viewing the mistreatment of animals on factory farms and slaughterhouses has virtually eliminated any desire to eat meat, dairy or eggs. Anyway, I usually have craved sweets a bit more than meat. But sweets often DO have animal products in them. I now eat naturally sweet things such as fruit and Larabars. The only problem is with dairy and eggs is eating what other people fix or eating at restaurants. It seems to be easier to completely avoid animal flesh than all dairy or eggs as ingredients in foods. I don’t crave dairy or eggs, however.

        2. I also have seen the speach of Gary Yurofsky and Melanie Joy both open my eyes too. You in America have so much people the are good teachers, I think on Mr. Neal Barnard for example. But for me, the best is Mr. Greger and team. I love this work…

      2. I was recently diagnosed with prostate cancer. Less than 5% was found in two of twelve cores with a Gleason score of 6. My PSA has recently been as low as 8.4 and as high as 12 (after testosterone pellets)

        I will not continue with testosterone replacement therapy.

        Would you share more details about the amount of cancer found, your Gleason score and PSA level before and now?

        Thank you

        1. I was Gleason 8 all biopsies positive, with local invasion, node positive, metastatic disease. My PSA was never that high at 4.6 but nonetheless until treatment my cancer was very aggressive. There is no history of prostate cancer in my family, though that history is very limited, and I think the primary causative factors were in my diet. Furthermore, recent research shows that diet and lifestyle are much more implicated in causing cancer than genetics. Only because I could not have a MRI, that would have shown the extent of my disease, did I have surgery but I’m glad I did. In hindsight, because of the symptoms of nerve damage my cancer had been invasive well before my surgery. I think hormone suppression helped, but eliminating all the dietary triggers of prostate cancer have kept me going these 18 years with no recurrence, and with an undetectable PSA. To reduce stress I retired early from my main practice as an MD at 62, though I still do some enjoyable consulting. Interestingly I had begun to realize that diet contributed to my patients recurrent health issues and was changing their diets and mine for about 10 years before my diagnosis, after which I became strictly vegan with a whole food plant based diet(WFPBD). Even vegan diets that contain a lot of processed foods are not very healthful and I think future research specifically on a WFPB vegan diet will show much more benefit. My LDL is now 65 and that dramatically reduces heart disease in all people including long term prostate cancer survivors. There is new research on alcohol showing that less than 5 alcoholic beverages per week is better, though I never drank much and have not consumed alcohol for 4-5 years. At 69 years of age, I surf, play singles tennis, and hike with my dog. My wife, who changed her diet and lifestyle with me, has helped me dramatically and she is also extremely vibrant.

          1. Great post! I think of you similar to a big brother, in that you’ve been doing this plant based diet longer. And, just like you, my wife has been so supportive through my diet change as well as the good news on my last MRI.
            Since I never played football early in life, my knees are fine and hope to do some serious hiking once I clock out of work for the last time.

            Good luck Jack!


  4. Wow. This is really critical in understanding resistance to WFPB nutrition. I will retool my approach to discussing veganism with others based on this information. Thanks as always doc.

  5. As one who has been down this road, very much as the article describes (with the exception of having undergone the surgical procedure), I can attest that following my diagnosis, I transitioned from the traditional fast food and animal based diet to a completely vegan diet. The results are no less than miraculous, at least in my own case. I had already been experiencing the ravaging declines that are typical from prostate deterioration. I avoided the gouging of tissue by biopsy, opting for digital technology instead. The bloody process of pulling samples from an already inflamed gland and allowing the blood to flow throughout my body, just seemed ridiculous and dangerous to me. My dietary change was actually more focused than a simple vegan diet. I actually focused upon largely raw cruciferous vegetables, avoided starchy vegetables and sugar and increased physical activity. In addition, I began using a specific, all natural prostate supplement from a European supplier who specializes only in prostate healing. The results took quite a long time to achieve and were very gradual; however, all function has returned and all symptoms have disappeared. Not saying that I’ve gone into the adult film industry or anything, but, at well over 60 years of age, my “performance” is now similar to that from my teen years. Prostate cancer is so common today that I know numerous men who have undergone the various invasive treatment choices offered, none of which actually seem to increase survival rates. Removal of the gland by microscopic surgery, from what I understand from friends and coworkers, nearly always results in total or near-total impotence and without lifestyle and dietary change, offers little chance that cancer will not return. Personally, I had limited difficulty changing from a meat based diet to vegan. It did require a lot of discipline (pizza and ice cream aren’t as good as great sex and a long healthy existence), but the choice was a no-brainer after researching for options and results. Had the dietary changes not worked (so far, it seems to have worked like a charm), my next option was to be transurethral hyperthermia offered in some German clinics.

    1. As a 69 yr old vegan at “high risk for prostate cancer” based on a high PSA (hopefully decreasing since I switched from a decades long lacto-pesco-vegetarian diet about a year ago), I’d be interested to know what’s in the prostate supplement (and it’s name).

      1. Ditto to the power of plants. During the time I was recovering from my heart attack, my GP also referred me to a urologist for a unexpected bulge on my prostate.

        Went through the biopsy as I was transitioning to WF-vegan diet style that included eating 2 Tbsp of fresh ground flax seed daily. Turns out that flax both combats prostate cancer as well as supports CV health (as does cutting out dairy.) A year later, my GP lingered over my prostate and she remarked at how normal its profile is now.

        Even though I still have nerve damage thanks to just the biopsy, vascular function is restored, I’m sleeping through the night again and I feel like I dodged a bullet as far as being subjected to the tender mercies of the urologist who soft-peddled the neurological risks of the procedures they implement.

        1. Wow, normal profile, that’s amazing. I’ll keep taking my ground flax and perhaps bump it up to 2 TBL/d. I’ve had 4 biopsies (6, 9, 12, 20 cores, and an MRI, all with negative results, thankfully) and based on your experience, am now wondering if they might have aggravated my BPH and associated urological symptoms … something my urologist adamantly denies.

          1. Having gone thru just one Bx, I can only imagine what you’ve experienced, my friend. Now, I’m not a doctor. Hell, I haven’t even stayed in a Holiday Inn Express. But that said, I seem to recall research I discovered as I was getting ready for my Bx that all thise Bx cores will traumatize the prostate and elevate PSA levels.

            If you haven’t searched the website for prostate iissues, I’d suggest that. It’s where I learned about milk & flax effects on prostates. Also, Dr John McDougall has an extended video on Steve Jobs pancreatic cancer that gave me an understanding of cancer growth dynamics.

            If you need me to find links like that, let me know.

            Oh, as for taking flax, my vegan cardiologist was delighted to hear that I grind my flax immediately before eating it… he said that there’s instances where fresh ground was more potent than off-the-shelf meal. To my lay/engineer way of thinking, I want all those volatile/metastable components to stay in those wonderfully protective seeds as long as possible.

            Hang in there. Best wishes for your future health.

            1. Indeed, there is a world of difference between fresh ground and pre-ground flax seed. Flax seed is notorious for going bad (rancid) after grinding. I used organic flax oil and quark (organic cottage cheese) while attacking my prostate issues with success, grinding the seed immediately before use and whipping it into the mixture to supercharge the flax oil. This method was developed years ago in Germany. Seemed to work, or, at least not to hurt. I used so many known protocols that it’s difficult to know which was more successful. My posture is that it’s like fighting a war … Throw everything you have at the enemy. The goal is to destroy them; not to make a friend.

              1. I would stay away from flax seed oil for many important and dangerous reasons. (1) it’s not a whole food, and a lot of nutrients are lost when it’s made into oil. The best form is the ground meal. (2) When made into oil it immediately becomes very unstable, goes rancid and causes inflammation that the body must contend with. (3) years ago men were warned not to take flax because there was a high correlation of those taking it later developing the cancer they were trying to avoid. After studying it for a few years, researchers determined that it was only the oil that caused the problem, that natural ground flax was protective. Decades ago, before I knew better, I bought organic, cold stored and transported flax seed oil. I quit when the flax warnings came out and resumed years later when the findings implicated the oil not the whole ground seed. You can find more on milk and prostate by searching this site or most vegan doctors.

                Also, cottage cheese is dairy and one of the things most correlated to prostate growth and prostate cancer. Even my conservative doctor who doesn’t believe in natural food cures says to stay away from dairy for prostate health.

      2. Hello David … The product that I use is called Total Health For The Prostate. It is provided by Ben’s Prostate. The product is a balanced combination of extremely pure nutrients and herbs. The company was begun by Mr. Ben Ong, who is also a staunch supporter of a vegan or plant based diet. The web site is easily located by internet search. By my own experience, I use nothing in my diet that is not known to be beneficial to the prostate and that is known to specifically combat cancer, even using the flax oil & cottage cheese treatment from Germany for perhaps six months (absolutely no other dairy of any sort). After very gradual but somewhat mediocre improvement from my efforts, Total Health For The Prostate seemed to put my recovery in high gear. I do not doubt that the combination of all efforts was effective; however, the big difference came with using the product. Best of luck to you.

    2. amazing…i wish I could find more stories like yours.

      How much cancer did you have, how aggressive was it, what were your PSA scores and how long did it take to reverse it?

  6. Boy it SURE worked for me. After my prostate cancer diagnosis some 7 years ago, given a death sentence, no matter what I did, I changed to a strictly Whole Food Plant Based Lifestyle and BAM, no problem. They gave me only 3 to 5 years and that was with surgery, radiation/chemo. I did NOTHING but change my nutrition/lifestyle. See for my story, what I did and how wonderful I am doing now. Healthier NOW, at 70, than when diagnosed! Read How Not to Die!

    1. What a miracle- Can you share more about the steps you took and how soon you began to see your condition improving? What were your gleason scores and PSA before and after changing your diet? Thank you

  7. What percentage of urologists actually recommend dietary modification as a means of treatment for prostate cancer? How many urologists are even aware of Dean Ornish’s work in reversing prostate cancer? I would predict the answers to these two questions are probably close to zero. I checked the American Cancer Society’s website, and all of the listed treatments for prostate cancer appear to be expensive procedures that help fill the bank accounts of the medical industry. Even active surveillance requires periodic biopsies, which may cost $6,000 or more. Nowhere on the ACA website is nutritional modification recommended as a treatment for prostate cancer. Could it possibly be that money plays a role here? How can the medical industry make any money if prostate cancer patients choose to change their diet rather than undergo surgery or radiation?

    1. Perhaps even worse is that it sounds like so many doctors dispense the worse than useless advice to “eat healthier”, a phrase about as empty of information as it is possible to get. And when as expected such useless advice, even when it does prompt minimal changes to the diet, has no observable effect on the progression of cancer, the failure just reinforces biases on the part of both doctors and patients that diet really doesn’t play any significant role in cancer progression.

      Probably nothing will happen until it becomes about money and somebody successfully sues a doctor for malpractice for ignoring the scientific evidence by not prescribing the the most effective treatment for a given conditions such as prostate cancer. Then you will see doctors doing a full court press with getting their patients to adopt a plant centered diet with little or no animal products just like they do now about quitting smoking. After all there was a time, as Dr. Greger has pointed out, that doctors used to endorse smoking. Today can you even imagine a doctor telling their patient that their smoking habit really didn’t have much to do with their lung cancer/heart disease/COPD/bladder cancer/etc., but just to be safe they probably see if they can’t cut down from a 2 packs a day to a pack a day. Doing so would get their pants sued off. The science about the disease promoting effects of a diet centered around animal products and highly refined plant products as it is about smoking.

      Sure you can’t make a patient stop smoking or eat a plant based diet, but the odds of compliance doesn’t protect a doctor from malpractice claims if they aren’t clear about the need to stop smoking, why should it protect them when they are given vague non-convincing recommendations to “eat healthier”?

      1. I completely agree with you. I am flamboozled as to why why someone has not sued a cardiologist for not telling them about Esselstyn’s, Ornish’s, etc research/books. If my physician put me through a chest-splitting bypass without telling me about dietary options by Esselstyne/Ornish I would be absolutely furious. Why are people not holding their physicians accountable for withholding this information?
        I would sue . .. except I reversed all of my chronic issues via WFPB diet.

        1. One word, ‘ignorance’.

          After my massive heart attack at age 52, I was a good Px, did the cardio-rehab my cardiologist Rx’d on his pad, dropped from 335+ lb (I’d maxed my scale out) to 300 lb, and yet had two more false alarm trips to the ER! Since I was already an ovo-lacto vegetarian (albeit à la South Beach diet), the dietician figured that square was checked and didn’t really offer much counsel.

          A year later, my *GP* suggested China Study & going vegan to reverse CVD. A year after that, I reached the point where I couldn’t ignore the suffering my love of eggs and cheese led to, even if ‘green washed’ with terms like ‘cage free’, ‘hormone free’, or ‘happy cows’. I decided to implement my GP’s advice for different reasons and cut all animal products out of my life.

          Resumed weight loss (another 35 lb), stopped yearly ER visits and started challenging my cardiologist about why I needed all his drugs which were giving me depression, muscle pains, and aggravating my ADD when my dietary changes were causing massive cholesterol drops and a BP of 103 / 60.

          It was only my serendipitous decision to go vegan for the benefit of cows & chickens that caused me to learn about a low SOS, WF vegan dietary style. While my current cardiologist is a great technician and pill dispenser (no disrespect intended) my sense is he doesn’t understand much less trust the power of plants.

          So, four years ago, we were both ignorant of WF-PB diet style… now I’m no longer ignorant and have finally found a vegan cardiologist. In talking with him, I now realize that while my GP counseled me to go vegan, she likely doesn’t understand some of the nuances we vegans experience by virtue of this lifestyle and so I’m likely to now seek out a vegan-supportive GP as well.

          I don’t believe all the medicos I encountered were willfully trying to withhold knowledge about SOS-PB vegan dietstyle… I think they were doing the best they could given the misinformation they were trained with and the poor regard with which vegans are held. Unfortunately, our experience is dismissed as anecdotal while their prescriptions are accepted as conventional wisdom, no matter how potent the former and how ineffectual the later. Thankfully, the Internets allow those of us with intuition and drive an avenue to access this lifesaving information in spite of the opposition of ignorant if well-intentioned gate-keepers.

        2. Agreed. I consider myself fortunate to live in a nation that allows access to the judiciary. Many see suits as something negative; however, I see the opportunity to achieve justice as a blessing. Of course, stepping into the world of lawyers and judges is not for the faint of heart, it beats living as one of the millions who have no judicial or constitutional rights.

      2. Here, here… only health advice I got from my cardiologist was “to walk on the strand (name of a local beach) more.” That said, I imagine he thought my 70+ lbs of weight loss was due to his cardio-rehab Rx instead of my adopting a
        WF-vegan diet style.

    2. The American Cancer Society is a worthless organization.
      A better organization is the American Institute of Cancer Research. . . who Campbell affiliated with. They offer dietary info.

      1. Agreed but extremely dangerous because the general public still look to them for advice. It appears they exist just to protect the interests of the cancer industry.

    3. Certainly not mine. I used to ask him about the connection of dairy and prostate cancer but he’d always pooh pooh the studies, saying they are weak and usually another one comes along an contradicts the earlier ones. Very frustating, as he’s supposed to be a very good urologist.

    4. I agree…but how much evidence really supports the notion that diet can reverse prostate cancer?

      It seems that a better diet is common sense for everyone’s overall health.

      I have not found much evidence that lifestyle changes can reverse prostate cancer.

      In fact Dean Ornish’s study is 7 years olds and I have seen no follow-up.

  8. Dr G almost never misses the mark but he did here. The issue for QOL after prostatectomy is really incontinence. Yes, sexual function does take a hit but the really tough change is in leaking. If the foolish men could get away from thinking how hard it would be to give up macdonalds, they might consider something that they have taken for granted all of their lives, being continent. Having said this, with good diet, exercise and a great surgeon both sexual function and continence can be managed well. It is a tough check for men because this form of cancer does kill!
    I had my prostatectomy in 2007 and have been quoted the good on both fronts…and 9 years later I am still alive. BTW my dad had radiation and died 15 years later in a 3.5 year agonizing death…

    1. Richard, thanks for this positive post. I had a robotic prostatectomy about three weeks ago and your story cheered me up no end!

  9. Compliance in medicine (i.e. the standard of care as we know it), is a huge problem. People don’t take their medicine.

    The transformation that Dr. Greger demands is that each person takes responsibility for his own health. In that world, the doctor is merely a coach.

    I have made the transformation for myself, but I didn’t not have the prejudices reported in this video.

    How difficult.

  10. 15 years ago I was treated for Gleason 8, invasive, node positive(really bad) Prostate cancer. So I became a vegan. Not only did I become impotent, but I was totally incontinent of urine for months. I am no shrinking violet having played rugby and remain a big wave surfer, but If I could go back, I would have became a vegan early in life, wore a tulip on my ear, and even wore tights and a Tutu if that would have prevented the Prostate cancer, surgery, years of chemotherapy, incontinence,and permanent impotence. But I am alive 16 years later as a vegan. Thank you.

  11. Its rather interesting reading about people (men) reaction to having to or electing to give up meat as though it is something that because they enjoy it they should continue to eat it without any consideration of the negative effects it has on your health. These are thoughts primarily of young people who discover early on in their lives the enjoyable things to do and eat and just continue to use these enjoyable habits without considering
    any negative consequences.
    But as we age and LEARN or become less ignorant, to be more accurate we make conscious decisions of how to lead our lives, what to do, what to eat and some people understanding human weaknesses, sell stuff to capitalize on it for money, in spite of the fact some of these products can and do cause harm.
    And I was one of these people, who didnt understand how I was being manipulated until, I read Edward Bernay’s book “Propaganda” and the light went on, and I was 70 years old.
    So I started doing my research about food and nutrition (The China Study, Whole, and many more, lastly, How Not To Die) and I began to eat healthfully. First vegetarian then Vegan and then as Joel Furman author of “Eat To Live” calls himself, I became a “Nutritarian” and am happy and healthy at 80.
    Do the research, learn the truth and decide what if anything you want to do about it.
    “Live Long and Prosper”

    1. On the related topic of BPH (benign protetate hyperplasia) or enlarged prostate, I found that a vegan WFBP diet with 2 T flaxseed daily, did slow the symptoms. Was already taking meds, Flomax and Dutasteride. Would be good to have fewer symtoms and get rid of the Dutasteride, but am reluctant to have any surgery, procedures. Are the more non-invasive procedures effective or worthwhile?

      1. Hi Mike- Sounds like you might already know this information, but here are all Dr. G’s videos on Prostate Health

        Here is Dr. McDougall’s article on BPH, which does mention some procedures at the end (please note, it is from 2010, so the medical procedures may have changed now). It does mention a few other natural remedies aside from flax that may be useful: BPH

        Hope you find something new and useful!

    1. Uh oh… I bought a subscription for my son, whose diet is atrocious (fast food, sweet coffee). He isn’t listening to me–though he will eat salad & veg at my table–so hoping any Men’s Health recommendations for diet–anything would be an improvement–will be more palatable because delivered in a non-mommy fashion? Fingers crossed!

    1. Education, standard of living, jobs, opportunities are now on the decline in America. All you can do now is just hunker down, on the other hand Russia is on the increase. The sanctions have not hurt them one bit, but has made them self sufficient in all of their food productions. All Russians who do not live in the major cities have their own backyard organic gardens.

    2. The biggest issue with men…meat…sex…etc…seems to be peer pressure? Look at the normal dist curve for IQ…and the high % of avg IQ men. Dumb is in…. So are endless wars.

      Don’t play with it. Kill something. Eat meat. Chase women. Wonderful. ;-)

    1. I didn’t either. And we continue to wonder why women can’t make headway in our culture today, why women continue to be paid less than men, why women aren’t taken seriously.
      But frankly, Men’s Health Magazine is giving their readership really bad health advice. The sooner those buffoons die out the better off all of us will be. Who needs ’em?
      Darwinism continues to work today.

      1. Magazines are in the business to sell advertising. What sells advertising is readership and what builds readership is telling people what they want to hear. The magazine has no interest in giving sound health advice they’re interested in selling magazines. It’s a shame.

        1. But to try to sell that as a HEALTH magazine? How something so misleading is not challenged?

          It is mainstream knowledge that fast food (aka Burger King etc) are the fastrack to the graveyard. They are openly promoting it in a “Health” magazine.

  12. WFPB diet is not just about avoiding the negatives. There are so many positive reasons to eat healthy. Like improved blood flow to brain and nether regions. There is no aphrodesiac like a healthy body. When will we stop teaching boys that it is manly to be stupid?

  13. These testimonies from people in the comment section are very inspirational. These newsletter is the most valuable tool I have ever come across in order to be on the cutting edge of health and nutrition. Thank you Dr. Greger and subscribers for your thoughts and testimonies.

  14. I too want to thank the people who took the time to share their stories today. While I may not have a prostate (though I understand that’s debatable), I got a lot of inspiration from reading your stories. I expect that your stories will both help others to not feel alone and also inspire other men to make their own dietary change before the situation deteriorates to the levels you all have mentioned.
    Good on all of you!

  15. Hello! :) I’m wondering if you could help me with something. I sleep at night at least 6-7 hours, but during the day, I’m still really sleepy to the point of falling asleep at my desk or in my chair while learning… It’s not that boring but it requires quite the amount of concentration and this falling asleep when and where i just happen to be is a bit inconvenient. I don’t drink coffe and try to keep my salt low because my blood pressure goes up really fast. I’d appreciate your help a lot. Sincere thanks!

    1. Hi Bianca,
      I’d recommend a sleep evaluation, where you spend the night either at home hooked up to an electronic device or in a sleep center hooked up to several devices which measure your sleep quantity/quality. Sleep apnea is one of the most common causes of daytime sleepiness, and *if* you have sleep apnea you’ll definitely want to get it treated because sleep quality is critically important to your long term health. Please see your primary care doctor/PA/NP and describe your symptoms. Good luck!

    2. I would try to sleep 8-9 hrs a night and see if that helps. I usually try for 8-9 hrs myself on a regular basis. If i only get 6-7 for a night or 2 there is no problem, but when it starts being more frequent than that then i do not feel near as good as with the 8-9 hrs. Simple and cheap and who knows it might work for you !!!

  16. This video is well stated. As a radiation oncologist who DOES advise patients to change their lifestyle, promoting a whole plant diet, I find very few men OR women are willing to consider such a change. I recall one lady who, after complaining of her life-style related ills, bluntly rejected any consideration of even moving toward a plant diet. BUT one man, one of the very few who have taken my dietary advice, at completion of his radiation treatments reported feeling better than he had in many years!

  17. Maybe the inability to modify one’s habits even to save one’s life is the new evolutionary pressure that favor gene combinations for higher degrees of mental flexibility and perhaps empathy and as such shift the mean of the species towards behaviors that are better adapted to this environment of saturation advertising and hyper-palatable foods.

  18. Robert, thanks for sharing your story. I’m really happy for you. Your results are wonderful and I hope others who might be helped by reading about it see your post. It’s disheartening that the VA (not to mention mainstream hospitals and clinics) don’t talk about treatment outcomes in terms of length and quality of life outcomes, and that they don’t at least offer a whole-food plant-based diet in addition to their protocols. But we’ll hit a tipping point and get there sooner than later. The local food movements and the distrust of big pharma are starting to change people’s minds and once we get to a tipping point it will catch on much faster.

    Mark G

  19. Dear Dr. Greger I would like to know your assessment on this question:
    What is better for the health ,
    1. stop eating meat fish and dairy but also not eating enough dark green leafy stuff and B12 and Omega 3
    or 2. Get enough of the nutrition my body needs but also eat meat fish and dairy from time to time in small amounts (like 2 out of 7 days) ?
    So to compress it “Is the wrong stuff more worse than the good stuff is good ?”

  20. I do not care what anyone thinks about my diet. Give me my Starch Solution, WFPB and let me feel goooood !!!! It amazes me how anyone can not get tired of being sick and tired !!!!!!!

    1. Because one doesn’t realize the difference till one makes the change.

      I went to WF-vegan eating for the benefit of the dairy cows and egg hens I was causing to be mistreated as a ovo-lacto “vegetarian” and had no expectations for myownse’f. About a month in, I realized that though I’d never felt poorly before the switch, I’d never felt as good as I was feeling now. While I did have some pangs of desire for cheese and eggs as my “residual self-image” recalled cheese pizza and omelets, they increasingly lost their allure and I like you would never look back now.

      Glad you made the change, too! It does feel good to feel good.

  21. Aloha,
    I’m 63 this Sept. been a vegetarian since age 19. The false idea of masculinity is killing many men in this and other societies.If you took this video and showed it to a large group of college studnets they would laugh and shake their heads.It’s neanderthal thinking.Even if they were not vege’s they would know better than to think in 2016 that eating more fruits and vegetables was feminizing.Politically you find a direct relationship between those that consider themselves conservative and the meat mentality.Tree huggers are liberals, meat eaters are conservative. The idea that one must kill to live goes hand in hand with this mentality as well.

    1. Well, I am conservative, 66 and a strict vegetarian (and concerned about the environment).

      I do not think it is political. It is more about a willingness to look at the evidence (and act upon it).

      1. Hey, Tom,
        Fresh off a two week trip from L.A. to LA and back via car, I hafta both agree and disagree with you. I agree that you can indeed find reflexive, shallow thinking “libruhls” (not your word) and conservatives every where. That said, from personal experience, I find that the more liberal/progressive a region, the more open they are to entertaining the ideas that things need to change.

        I just spent the past two weeks living off of raisin bran using oatmilk I bought with me and beans, rice, and potatoes I cooked in my pressure cooker in my room. The only vegan-friendly oil-free restaurant fare I could find in a city of 30k was a customized spring roll at a sympathetic Vietnamese restaurant and a single decent salad bar that literally was 1/20 the size of the one I eat at here in L.A..

        There is a difference.

        All that said, from the comments I’ve read of yours here at, you strike me as a bloke I’d love to share a bowl of hummus with.

        1. Hi Ralph. Welcome back.

          Isn’t that particular difference though just big city vs small town? We are a tiny minority. In a town of 30,000 it wouldn’t be financially viable for businesses to cater for the likes of us.


          1. Thanks, Tom. Yeah, I thought of the big city/small town aspect, but I think I’d’ve found the same dynamic if I’d made my way over to Baton Rouge. I do readily acknowledge that L.A. is one of the better areas to live vegan.

            NOLA is large enough that one can find some middle eastern restaurants who understand that people can survive/thrive on vegan fare though the cuisine does suffer from reflexive additions of lots of olive oil.

            In Slidell, I’m not*even* thinking that there’d be a vegetarian/vegan oriented restaurant, but the ubiquity of flesh, dairy, mayo, oil and dearth of anything green beyond iceberg lettuce, slaw and greens cooked to death with a hock (Lordy I loved ’em) is suffocating.

            It is a different world down there. A (new to me) popular trend I saw across the South, at truck stops and in mom-&-pop convenience stores was a 4-6 ft long case displaying fried chicken, fried fish w/ hush puppies, ribs, corn dogs, BBQ, etc. under IR lamps next to the cash register.) I declare, if anyone ever manages to figure out how to deepfat fry a bowl of soup, it’ll be good ol’ boy from down home. Makes me wonder what Paula Dean’s up to these days?

            1. I am not sure that I understand all your references (NOLA, Paula Dean?) and where I come from Hush Puppies are a brand of shoes … so that would be sole food in Louisiana?
              Of course, a deep frying fetish is not unique to the US South. They are a dab hand at it in Scotland too …. deep fried Mars Bars, pizzas even butter balls and ice cream. They also have disastrous cardiovascular disease rates just like the US South.

              1. Oops, sorry for the regional lingo… NOLA = New Orleans, LA

                I saw what you did about the sole food! 8^) Hush puppies are a fried cornmeal batter that’s made after having dredged fish in a cornmeal breading. The folk etymology was the hush puppies we’re given to placate the dogs that were hanging around hoping for some fish.

                As to Paula Deen, she’s a notorious southern chef (sic) who never saw a dish that couldn’t be improved by butter/mayo. At least until she came down with type 2 diabetes though that didn’t stop her from profiting off the misery of others by continuing to push cookbooks and produce television shows calling for obscene amounts of salt, oil, & sugar up until the point she landed a gig with Novo Nordisk to push their diabetes management program. E.g., one of her signature creations was a breakfast sandwich consisting of a fried egg , a hamburger patty, and bacon nestled between two Krispy Kream yeast doughnuts. Then there’s the matter of her posing for photos with her son in black face but that’s a discussion to be had in another venue.

        2. Hi Ralph. As I wrote before, there is probably a different constellation of ideas clustered around liberals and self-styled progressives in the UK and Europe generally compared to the US. This quote from George Orwell sums it up nicely although with the demise of the Soviet Union, communism/Marxism are now becoming less and less fashionable ..
          ““One sometimes gets the impression that the mere words ‘Socialism’ and ‘Communism’ draw towards them with magnetic force every fruit-juice drinker, nudist, sandal-wearer, sex-maniac, Quaker, ‘Nature Cure’ quack, pacifist, and feminist in England.”
          ― George Orwell, The Road to Wigan Pier

  22. I wish the Veterans Affairs administration would consider using vitamins. Did you know that there are some doctors who will put you on every vitamin and Omega threes? They are called orthomolecular doctors. They simply write “A, B3. B Complex, Vitamin C, Vitamin D, and maybe Vitamin E.” They know how to dose them beyond one pill a day. You would be very smart to know that it is possible to take more than one vitamin of each a day. I wonder if they would ever consider adding minerals. Plants use fertilizers, Nitrogen, Phosphorus, Potassium. I would ask if people need these too. Silicon for hemorrhoids. Sulfur is also very good for people from MSM. A vegan diet is probably less processed and has more nutrition. Dr. Pauling said all diseases can be cured with vitamins and minerals. It is possible to use this information to maximize health.

  23. Men’s HEALTH magazine…?

    Advocating the worse kind of fast food, meat and more meat, against vegetables.. I thought it was sarcastical.

    If it isn’t, and anyone buys that it is a magazine in any way or form related to health, yeah they are candidates to the Darwin Awards.

    Natural selection — There was a lot of bragging about being simpleton brutes, none about having brains.. Way of the dodo is in. ;)

  24. It’s early and I have a new resolution to never post anything extensive I write this early in the morning. This morning I will drive to the VA Medical center to see an endocrinologist. I have T1 diabetes which is service connected. So I have extensive experience with the VA medical system. I will post more this evening.
    But for now I will say your observations are 100% correct. Unfortunately, for the moment at least, the outlook for the VA looks less than sanguine due to budgetary limitations as well as a well developed cronyism. I will think about it and post some possible suggestions later. I’m always looking for ways to prod the system to be a bit better. I likely will also have questions.

      1. I’m sorry, I thought it was obvious, instead of the majority of men thinking about the increased risk of prostate cancer by consuming dairy and meat products as all their buddies do, that even once they have contracted prostate cancer, instead of thinking ‘let me change my intake of dairy and meat to something healthy’ they instead would rather follow the crowd and feel accepted as part of the 90% who follow the herd. When most people switch from meat/dairy to a healthier Vegan diet, it isn’t because they don’t love the taste of cheese and meat, its because, even though the ‘crowd’ eats a SAD diet, they choose to live a healthier life and instead go Vegan. It is pointed out many times that the majority of Vegans are woman, those are the leaders, the woman who are not followers, who switch to Vegan so they have less risk of cancer, heart disease, stroke, and chronic disease, they step out of the ‘followers line’ and be their own person, they become the majority of the 10% which are leaders. Meanwhile, the majority of men are talking about eating more meat, even after prostate cancer, so they can be a follower and feel accepted by the herd/crowd, even though they have seen the science against it, maybe understand what happened with their prostate, yet they tend to be followers regardless, woman not so much.

  25. Not that I disagree with this video at all but keep in mind there are alternatives to Prostate Cancer Treatment that does not leave a Male with sexual dis-function. Radiation Therapy using a technique called IMRT will leave a male’s sexual function intact with very little side effects. That being said, med should eat healthier and not get the prostate cancer to begin with. Just sayin

  26. If eating meat is manly, why not eat RAW meat (not cooked/burnt) like a girl ! Why not hunt for meat without guns & knives like a real man (instead of going hunting like a little girl with a gun) ! Go to KFC and order a RAW chicken basket and eat it like a “Real Man”, not like a little girl ! They are all little girls according to their own superstitious beliefs.

  27. All this seems very similar to my diagnosis of thyroid cancer. This motivated my mid-life change to a plant based diet whereby the first things that were to happen, within weeks, was that my arthritis went away and my desire for caffeine disappeared. I chose to monitor my thyroid cancer against both the first and second opinion recommendations to remove the thyroid. The 2nd opinion was from the VA but with the silver lining that the nurse practitioner I now see is deep into a plant based diet and exercise as the first action of choice for most maladies. Three years later my MD said I no longer needed monitoring as my alleged cancer (“suspicious of cancer” – with a standard of practice of removing the thyroid!) had done nothing in that time. I’ve lost 30 lbs (bmi 21). I’ve run 3 marathons in those 3 years as my energy level is now more consistent than any time in my life (I’m 60 – I had run half marathons 30 years ago). The best thing to happen to me in the past 10 years was to be told I had cancer.

  28. I’ve been following a whole foods plant based for about 8 years now and recently took a job as a dietitian at the VA. I tell all of my patients about the benefits of going plant based. Of course not everyone is willing to do it 100%, but I help coach people in that direction as much as they are willing to go. Overall, I feel like both patients and the medical professionals are becoming more and more open to using plant-based nutrition therapy for chronic disease reversal. We just need to keep getting the information out there; have heart, things are changing! :)

    1. Thank you for serving my brothers and sisters of the military and teaching them how to eat better. I am also a vegan (4+years, no sugars either) and former USN 8 years. Keep up the good work!

  29. I was improving my diet before being diagnosed with Prostate cancer at 51, although I really did not understand how to do it despite being an MD or, should I say, because I was an MD: substituting poultry and eggs for beef and eating yogurt. I actually had symptoms of Prostate cancer pelvic invasion since age 35 with perineal pain, erectile dysfunction, and abnormal ejaculation. There was no positive family history but canned spaghetti was common then in Australia on toast as well as baked beans on toast, or as a standby for camping trips. Of course whole milk, eggs, and poultry were staples as well. 16, almost 17, years later I am alive after becoming vegan, overcoming incontinence, but never overcoming total sexual dysfunction, though I am fortunate to be married to a loving understanding woman for 47 years. Though a rugby player, surfer, runner, tennis player, etc., I would have gladly even worn lipstick, if that would have helped, to eat my vegetables and give up meat, dairy, and eggs to avoid the surgery, chemo, suffering, and dysfunction that I have endured. I can only continue to thank Dr Greger and staff for their ongoing advice for all heath issues for my patients, my family, and myself. I have commented on this subject before but I thought it worth repeating.

    1. Robert Haile: That’s such a powerful story. Thank you for taking the time to share it (again). That kind of personal information can be more compelling at times than a million statistics. I’m sure it will help someone out there.

  30. I never knew cannabis oil was indeed wonderful and very effective in the treatment of cancer “if not by the government and there so called rules to regulate cannabis my dad would still have been alive. Thanks to the new policy of legalizing cannabis in my state and have even lost my husband kidney, and it was really shocked and surprised when I see a lot of documentary on how the cannabis oil had helped many people to whom His family thought they never could do next undergoing several “Chemo” from the department of my heart, and I have to say a word of appreciation to Dr Brown Nelson for timely intervention in the lives of my husband suffering from kidney cancer. As I write this testimony in this blog my husband is so strong and healthy even though he have not completed the total dosage “for cannabis and medical consultation opportunity and get in touch with him if you are a cancer patient through their email: ( so you can get more details.

    Treatment Reginae:
    I have a pretty big tolerance for marijuana, so my husband started off with a full grain of rice sized amount of oil instead of a half grain. I gradually increased the dosage every night until he reached a full gram each night. The standard protocol for Dr Brown Nelson Oil is ingesting a total of 60 grams over the course of 2-3 months, but I had 70 grams in total for safe measure. I used the excess as a topical skin care treatment, attacking the visible brown spots on hisface and neck.

    3 months later, my husband cancer was in full remission. Within 4 months, my husband was free from cancer- and officially received a clean bill of health from our doctors. What they don’t know is that the majority of my treatment was using by Dr Brown Nelson Oil. I did use some of the medication they prescribed, but it was in combination with the oil.

    I am elated I want to continue sharing with people who are experiencing what my husband went through that there is absolutely hope and a cure out there. They just need to be proactive and aggressive with treatment, don,t wait until it is too late. Get your medication via Email: (

    In addition to being an effective cancer fighter, there are some nice side effects that come from using the Dr Brown Nelson oil, for instance, I no longer need to take any pain killers. Just one or two drops of the oil will ease the pain and help you sleep like a baby. Best of all, its natural . . . Thanks to all the staff at Dr Brown Garden who guided me throughout this journey. You guys are awesome!

  31. I don’t understand sites like this one, advertising an one size fits all approach to nutrition.

    Modern science teaches us that we humans are not all the same.

    There are basically 3 nutritional types of humans: the carbohydrate type, the protein type and the mix type.
    Telling a protein type to eat a purely plant based diet is just stupid, if not criminal.

  32. My dad , a lifelong pescetarian, military veteran who exercised regularly is currently undergoing radiation as part of his prostrate cancer treatment. This has been a stressful time for us all and the last thing a cancer patient needs is a judgmental talk on a diet. Good for those of you who have recovered but I would like to see some evidence of the diagnosis.

    1. WhyShouldIBelieveYou: This site is all about the evidence. Anecdotes can be inspiring for some people, but they are only relevant in the context of some good science to back it up. You can click the ‘sources cited’ button to the right of any video-of-the-day to view the data for yourself. There are multiple videos on this site about prostate cancer. And Dr. Greger’s book How Not To Die contains and entire chapter, with lots of citations. You can look it all up if you want.
      I’m sorry to hear that your family is going through such a stressful time. No one suggests that anyone give a judgmental talk. If talking about diet seems like it would come out as judgmental to you, I agree that’s probably not a good idea. Ideally, someone would talk to your dad who could do it in a way of offering hope and personal control, not judgment. Or maybe this isn’t the time to talk about diet right now. But if you think your Dad would appreciate knowing he has the power to control some of his risks, then you might give him a copy of Dr. Greger’s book or show him some of the videos on this site. Those are just options you have.
      Here is an overview/topic page of the information NutritionFacts has about prostate cancer:
      Good luck to all of you.

  33. Your writing style is humorous but you are correct: the VA isn’t concerned with all that mumbo-jumbo medical research. Why, they have a script and will use it because they keep their jobs by staying on script. It’s not that plant based works or doesn’t that they are concerned (but should be) but that they are funded by people that have financial interests in their services (big Pharma, medical device manufacturers, etc.). If they were concerned about treatment success, they’d try anything that would improve a patients well being for as long as possible. Including a plant-based diet with moderate exercise and start with the least expensive treatments first. Not a radical prostatectomy and chemo. That would be prevention. They are paid by the procedure not the prevention statistics.

  34. As a sign of gratitude i want to also reach out to others out there not lose all hope. 3 years ago I had a prostate cancer surgery. Since then I have not been able to have any erection to enable me have sex. Despite having taken various medications and supplements, I have not at all been successful. In my state of compliant i was opportune to speak to a cousin of mine because at first i was shy about the problem but this was almost tearing my marriage apart and my wife saw me as a half man who could not perform his duty as a man to satisfy her. He gave me the contact information on how to contact the doctor who sent this very powerful herbal medicine to his friend that had similar problem, i contacted him and he sent me the medication which i used too and that was all. In my life i never thought i would ever be able to have any erection not to talk about having sex again but i was proven all wrong and now i am so active like i am in my early 20’s. Do not suffer in silence or be shy you can contact him too on He will surely be able to help you too.

  35. Public comments are being accepted through May 8, 2017, on the Prostate Cancer Screening Draft Recommendations from the USPSTF at
    Please consider commenting and asking others to comment to encourage the USPSTF to include recommendations that clinicians inform men of all ages about the potential benefits of a plant-based diet regardless of whether they use prostate-specific antigen (PSA)–based screening. Any conversation about prostate cancer that does not include information about the potential benefits of a plant-based diet is negligence.

  36. My diet including chicken, eggs, meat, milk, BPA in cans lead to my Gleason 8, all biopsies positive, locally invasive, node positive metastatic prostate cancer causing impotence and incontinence. Besides standard treatment, I became a vegan, and despite my 10 year survival prognosis being near zero, I am alive and continent 17 years later, but still impotent. I’ve grown to love the variety of a vegan diet, surf, play tennis, mountain bike, and walk my dog with my wife. We read, meditate, and continue to study medicine as well as science and nature. We enjoy and love our 3 children and 9 grandchildren. Life isn’t just about sex. A wimp isn’t a person on a vegan diet but someone too weak to change their lifestyle for themselves and their families: be a man, become a vegan!

  37. Interesting study, and even more interesting— the fact that a man is more likely NOT to change his eating lifestyle to improve his health. Well, life IS about choices right? You can present people with everything they need to know— you can show them the science, you can explain it to them in lay terms, you can (as this report did) deliver the exact kind of meal he should eat— but if buddy wants to continue to eat all that beef and pork – well, have at it. The old argument that “if I can’t eat what I want– what’s the point of living?” Well, think about that men– when you see blood in the semen, or you start having trouble taking a leak, or you just can’t get it up. People only change when they hear the words “you only have XX weeks to live,” spoken by their urologist, or oncologist, or they are in physical pain. So, take the findings men, and do with it—what you will. The choice is, after all, yours. Thank you Dr. Greger, as always, for the interesting and always informative news.

  38. I find it amazing men can be so obstinate about their diet. I switched to client-to-vegetarian about six years ago. Still ate cottage cheese, yogurt, ice cream, sweets.

    Since my prostate cancer diagnosis in April, I’ve been far closer to vegetarian turning completely vegan Aug. 29. Since then no cravings for sweets. My cholesterol dropped 50 points to 150, and my PSA was the lowest in two years.

    I’m done with the average diet. I love my plant based fruit and vegetable diet. I have more energy and my weight stays low.

  39. Early March 2018 I took a blood test because I was revamping my life insurance. Low and behold my psa came in at 5.15. I’m a 62 year old male and over the years my psa has been ticking up year over year. I called my doctor and he advised another psa test—the second test came in at 8.3 and a free psa of 13—to which I was advised that under 25 free psa is not good and below 10 is really bad….so I was then referred to a urologist who suggested an MRI….before the mri I took a 4K test which is a predictor of aggressive cancer and that number came in at 11…I was told below 7.5 is bad and above 17.5 is good. Next step was a biopsy which came scored as a Gleason 6 and they saw a 2mm carcinoma in some lateral area of my prostate. The biopsy also saw two “suspicious” areas that could not be classified as cancer. The suggestion was that I go on “active surveillance” and that in 6 months i will take another psa test and somewhere between 1 to 2 years I will have another biopsy. As a result of all of this I am now 100% plant based. I told my primary doctor and my urologist that i have changed my diet to which they said “what’s that have to do with prostate cancer”, also they did say I should eat “low fat”. In my view i feel like I am conducting a one person experiment in the hopes that my radical change in diet will lower my psa which hopefully will be indicative of slowing/regressing any progress of my carcinoma.
    I have always eaten i would say in moderation. A few years ago I did try going vegan after I had read some books by Ornish, Esselstyn, Macdougall —but I let it go after about 6 months because I thought it was “too difficult.” When vegan my weight had gone from 175 down to 158, and although I felt that this was a great weight for me (i’m 5’8” – medium build) I found the vegan way hard to sustain especially in social situations. My father 20 years ago was diagnosed with prostate cancer and he successfully rid the cancer via radioactive seeds which had the side effects of urinary incontinence and some sexual dysfunction.
    So here I am now with a diagnosis of low aggressive prostate cancer. As I write this my biopsy cancer sample is being sent to lab where they will do an Oncatype DX test to genetically analyze the tumor to hopefully confirm what the doctors concluded was Gleason 6 via their visual conclusion of what they saw under the microscope.
    As soon as I got that cancer diagnosis I decided I would go plant based and then via google I found Dr. Gregers website. I hope my experiment works and I hope and pray what I have read and listened to on works in my particular case.
    Thank you Dr. Greger for all your work and insight. You are giving me hope! I am not by any means anti-science, afterall it was science that allowed me to find out that I have a clear and present danger lurking within. I just hope the science of plant based eating will enable me to avoid radiation & or surgery alternatives.

    1. Andy!!!
      I’m delighted to read this response, and I hope we can compare notes as I have an update to my story since I first posted last November.

      Like you, I’m a Gleason 6, and I was similar in that I had a 1 mm and a 1.5 tumors, but I didn’t delve further into the specifics as I knew it was tiny and in a location where it wasn’t threatening to grow beyond the prostate gland. I started eating plant based in August 2017 and promptly saw two decreasing of my PSA that together dropped what was a rising number that peaked at 5.9, down to 4.35 as of January.

      In March, I had my annual MRI and my doc’s words were, “Negative for clinically significant prostate cancer!” We looked at the images, and where there used to be a couple small areas of concern, it all now looked clear.
      He advised me to get a PSA in six months and an annual MRI next year. If all was still good, I could wait until three years for the next MRI after that.

      My take on this is the cancer is still there, but it’s too small to see.
      Because of that, I will eat strictly plant based for the rest of my life.
      This really isn’t something to “cheat” about, and besides, I really don’t miss sweets or salties, or another other form of junk food or excessively processed food.

      Mega kudos to Dr. Greger and his fabulous book!

      1. Greetings James and thank you for taking the time to write! I am very happy to hear abt your excellent progress! That’s exactly the same result I am hoping to achieve! Happy to compare notes as I am full throttle in my plant based experiment. Likewise I will not cheat as I now view animal/junk food as a time bomb that will wreak havoc on my body. Best, Andy

        1. Hey Andy,

          If you’d rather take this off-line except for pertinent additions, my email address is

          I’m just thinking we could reduce a bit of the clutter on Dr. Greger’s website, but I’m flexible either way.

          I will say I haven’t sought much “expert advice,” though I did chat with a dietitian about this and she wasn’t too open to the idea of “excluding whole food groups — where would you get calcium if you didn’t consume dairy?” HA! I did happen upon a website that talked of white button mushrooms helping men with prostate cancer, though I believe Dr. Greger had data to back that up too.

          My most recent additions to my diet are: dulse, and supplements DHA/EPA and Dr. Fuhrman’s “Men’s Daily Formula +D3.”

          My hope is the evidence we collectively post, with other men, would convince others to give diet a shot instead of conceding themselves to the after-effects of surgery or radiation.

      2. I am convinced that eliminating hormones in milk/cheese/chicken/etc as well as synthetic hormones such as BPH found in preprepared food in tins and bottles, etc. as well as eggs, red meat, and especially preserved meat which are carcinogenic have kept me going 18 years after my mainstream treatment, both of which are important. I was lucky to have always loved fruit and vegetables and Michael Greger MD at videos and blogs have provided videos and blogs to support this as well as continued updates on how to improve my diet.(e.g.. don’t eat polluted Chinese garlic which you can tell with it being very bleached with the roots cut off.) I also read his How Not to Die as sometimes we can become so focused on our cancer that we forget more common health conditions such as heart disease.

    2. Hi Andy – I’m Janelle, a Registered Dietitian as well as a Health Support Volunteer for Thanks for sharing your story! You’ve certainly come across a great nutrition resource by visiting the website. As a dietitian, it is always so exciting hearing about dietary changes that others have made! Food is such a powerful tool when it comes to health that is too often undermined. Dr. Dean Ornish saw that prostate cancer progression was essentially reversed in early stages with a plant-based diet. Here are some additional links to check out for more information about a plant-based diet and prostate cancer – and I wish you the best of health!

      1. Gee,

        I feel like I left a message in the wrong location as I’ve never received a reply for my diet – prostate cancer story. Is there a better way to post? Not that I want credit, but I’d like to show men that plant based is easy and works.

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