LIFESTYLES: Pritikin Diet Kills Prostate Ca Cells

UCLA Scientists Report Pritikin Diet/Exercise Program Kills Prostate Cancer Cells

Daily exercise and the Pritikin diet, low in fat and high in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, can destroy prostate cancer cells in the lab setting, new research shows.

"Our research found that the Pritikin diet and exercise program is almost twice as effective as exercise alone for inducing apoptosis, or cell death, in prostate cancer cells," said James Barnard, PhD, professor of physiological science at UCLA and lead investigator on the study.

In the new study, published in the August 1, 2003 issue of The Prostate, Barnard and colleagues obtained blood serum from three different groups of middle-aged men. The first group was composed of 14 sedentary, overweight men who ate a typical high-fat, high-sugar U.S. diet. The second group included 8 men who had followed the Pritikin diet and exercise program for an average of 14 years. The third group was made up of 12 men who had been exercising regularly at the UNLV Adult Fitness Program for 14 years but had not modified their diet.

The scientists placed the men's blood serums in culture dishes containing prostate cancer cells. Three days later, the researchers noted that the blood serum of the Pritikin followers had destroyed 50 percent of the prostate cancer cells. The serum of the exercise-only group had destroyed about 25 percent of the cells. In culture dishes containing the blood serum of overweight, sedentary men eating a typically high-fat American diet, fewer than 3 percent of the cancer cells were on their way to death.

"We didn't expect the results would be this dramatic," Barnard said. "We don't know yet whether these changes that occurred in a lab setting will also occur in patients, but epidemiological studies suggest they do. Malignant prostate cancer is rare among populations of the world, like Japan, that follow a lifestyle like the Pritikin Program.

"We know, too, that when Japanese men migrate to the United States and adopt this country's high-fat diet and sedentary lifestyle, their incidence of invasive and clinical prostate cancer increases greatly."

Among men in America, prostate cancer is the most common type of cancer other than skin cancer, and the second leading cause of cancer death, exceeded only by lung cancer. Some 30,000 men in the U.S. die of the disease each year.

"The results from our new research suggest that much of this death could be prevented by diet and exercise," concludes Barnard.

The Pritikin Longevity Center & Spa located at the Yacht Club of Turnberry Isle Resort in Aventura, Florida, houses Pritikin's residential program that combines education, low-fat eating and structured exercise, tailored to meet the needs of the individual. The Pritikin team is comprised of an exceptional group of experts in health science -- all with the mission to help the program participants to adopt lifestyle changes that promote health and longevity.

For reservations and rate information, call the Pritikin Longevity Center & Spa at (800) 327-4914 or visit the website at

Source: Pritikin Longevity Center & Spa

CONTACT: James Barnard, PhD, UCLA, +1-310-825-3794, or; or PPR Communications,, +1-305-445-4944, for Pritikin

Web site:


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