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August 20, 2015

Lower Prostate Cancer Risk: How Women Can Help

prostate cancer riskHow Women Can Lower Prostate Cancer Risk

You might think the title of this article is a misprint but it is not.

This is a tongue in cheek piece that I’m sure will leave women loving me (more than they already do). Is it possible for women to really lower prostate cancer risk when they don’t even have a prostate gland unless they are Caitlyn Jenner?  You bet. The answer is by having more sex with their man.

We’ve seen the Chick-fil-A commercials telling us to “Eat More Chicken”. Might we see a similar commercial for men telling them to “Have More Sex” to lower prostate cancer risk? Probably not, but the message has some science behind it. So women you might be to blame if your husband develops prostate cancer. As if you don’t have a enough to worry about.

For a long time it was thought that men who had more sex – especially with multiple partners – were at higher risk of prostate cancer. The theory being that they were more likely to contract a sexually transmitted disease which causes inflammation and inflammation raises the risk of cancer.

But, studies in 2003 and 2004 debunked that theory and the results of research presented at the American Urological Association’s annual meeting in 2015 provided the strongest evidence that more frequent ejaculation reduces the risk of prostate cancer. The research involved following over 32,000 men for 18 years. That research was an update of ongoing study originally published in JAMA in 2004.

The earlier JAMA study found that men who ejaculated 21 times a month had a 33% lower risk of prostate cancer. An Australian study found similar results where men who ejaculate 4.6 to 7 times a week were 36% less likely to develop prostate cancer. Why is that?

How Ejaculation Lowers Prostate Cancer Risk

The theory behind the lower prostate cancer risk is that frequent ejaculation is a way to “clean the house” of the  prostate gland and seminal vesicles of potentially harmful and inflammatory products (akin to having more frequent bowel movements aiding the removal of toxins). Plus, sexual activity in of itself has anti-inflammatory and stress reducing effects. Stress is very inflammatory and sex is an effective stress reducer.

Believe it or not but prostate cancer affects a higher percentage of men than breast cancer affects women. But, it doesn’t quite garner the media attention as breast cancer despite affecting one out of every six to seven men. And, metastatic prostatate cancer is not a pleasant way to die. So any reduction in prostate cancer would be helpful. And, perhaps more sex is an answer adding to the number of health benefits of sex.

Do Divorced Men Have More Sex?

One notable finding in the JAMA study is that men who reported more than 21 ejaculations per month were more likely to be divorced. That’s a chicken and egg question when you think about it. Are they divorced because they were not getting enough sex. Or, are they divorced because they were getting too much sex – outside the marriage that is? Or, are they just “flying solo” most of the time out of desperation? Who knows? The study didn’t answer those questions.

Good news for women, though. Y’all can breathe a small sigh of relief as evidence suggests it’s the number of ejaculations in a month that matter whether it be from sexual intercourse, nocturnal emissions, or masturbation. So if your man is not hitting the magic number of 21, it’s not entirely your fault. You are partially off the hook – but only partially. Yet, why take a chance with your husband’s health? We recommend playing it safe and get in those 21 sessions of sexual intercourse per month!

Women – if you really love your husband, show it by lowering his prostate cancer risk.  And, now you know how. You can thank me later. Men can, too!

Let’s debunk a myth and put a fork in politial correctness. If Caitlyn Jenner gets prostate cancer, guess what? He’s not a woman no matter what “she” wants to call himself.

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Dr. Joe Jacko

Dr. Joe is board certified in internal medicine and sports medicine with additional training in hormone replacement therapy and regenerative medicine. He has trained or practiced at leading institutions including the Hughston Clinic, Cooper Clinic, Steadman-Hawkins Clinic of the Carolinas, and Cenegenics. He currently practices in Columbus, Ohio at Grandview Primary Care. Read more about Dr. Joe Jacko

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