Dairy products have been linked to higher chances of prostate cancer, according to a new study. The good news? A plant-based diet cuts the risk.

Mayo Clinic researchers looked at previous studies in scientific journals over the past 14 years, and looked at over 1 million research participants. They aggregated previous prostate cancer papers to find the link between dairy and prostate cancer. The research can be found in a new article in the Journal of the American Osteopathic Association.

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Their new research found that plant-based diets, were linked to a lower or unchanged risk of developing prostate cancer from a baseline risk. Animal products, dairy specifically, was linked to increased or unchanged risk of a prostate cancer diagnosis. Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer for men after skin cancer.

“Our review highlighted a cause for concern with high consumption of dairy products. The findings also support a growing body of evidence on the potential benefits of plant-based diets,” says study co-author Dr. John Shin.

One nutrition and dietetics professor said the study was not robust enough to link dairy consumption to prostate cancer, but added that the The World Cancer Research Fund found that vegans have a 35% lower risk of prostate cancer. This linkage could be weight related, he said.

In light of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, physician members of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine are petitioning the Food and Drug Administration to put a cancer warning label on cheese. Dairy has been linked to other health problems, including acne. Jon Stewart and his wife recently gave support for a vegan diet to help women avoid breast cancer. Read more about the tremendous benefits a vegan diet can have on your health in One Green Planet.

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