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Nuts, seeds, lentils and beans reduce prostate cancer risk (1999)


Jain, M.G., G.T. Hislop, G.R. Howe, P. Ghadirian, 1999. Plant foods, antioxidants and prostate cancer risk: findings from case-control studies in Canada. Nutr and Cancer. 1999;34(2):173-84. (

Study Type:


Number of participants:

617 cases and 636 controls

Participant description:

Men with a recent diagnosis of prostate cancer and their matched controls




Eating more nuts, seeds, lentils and beans may reduce the risk of prostate cancer according to the results of this multi-centre case-control study. 617 men with prostate cancer were identified from three centres in Canada and matched by age with 636 controls from the same locations. Each subject was interviewed at home or in hospital using a validated, quantitative diet history to obtain estimates of daily food intake. Foods were divided into 29 groups, including a nuts, seeds, beans and lentils group. Analysis of the data showed that eating 30.7grams or more of nuts, seeds, lentils or beans daily was associated with a 30% lower risk of developing prostate cancer. Other food groups associated with a lower risk of prostate cancer included green vegetables, tomatoes and cruciferous vegetables.

Editor’s note: Due to the method used to group foods in this study, any independent effect of nuts on reducing risk of prostate cancer cannot be determined. However, the results highlight the importance of including plenty of plant foods, particularly nuts, seeds, lentils, beans, tomatoes, and green and cruciferous vegetables in a healthy eating pattern for reducing prostate cancer risk.