Originally published on Advocate.com April 19 2008 12:00 AM ET
masturbation may help men cut their risk of contracting
prostate cancer, according to Australian researchers.
It is believed that carcinogens may build up in the
prostate if men do not ejaculate regularly, BBC
News reported in 2003. The researchers surveyed more
than 1,000 men who had developed prostate cancer, and 1,250
men who had not. They found that men who had
ejaculated the most between the ages of 20 and 50 were
the least likely to get cancer. Men who ejaculated more
than five times each week were a third less likely to
develop prostate cancer.
intercourse may not have the same effect because of the
higher risk of contracting a sexually transmitted
disease, which could in turn raise the risk of cancer.
"Had we been able
to remove ejaculations associated with sexual
intercourse, there should have been an even stronger
protective effect of ejaculations," Graham Giles of
the Cancer Council Victoria, who led the researchers,
said in the article.
produces a fluid that is incorporated into ejaculation,
which activates sperm and prevents them from sticking
together. Studies on animals have shown that
carcinogens like 3-methylchloranthrene can be harbored
in the prostate. Frequent ejaculation encourages the
cancer-inducing fluids to "flush out." (The Advocate)