Alcohol, Dairy and Occasional Sweet? ... - Advanced Prostate...

Advanced Prostate Cancer

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Alcohol, Dairy and Occasional Sweet? What's the Verdit?


I'm wondering if consuming an occasional glass of red wine (or even a beer) can make cancer progress faster? Also, what about occasional sweet treats and cheese. Everything I found online suggests that going vegan is critical in addition to avoiding alcohol and dairy. However, after reviewing Tall Allen's Vegan Schmegan post and the study he shared with us, it seems that diet restrictions have no bearing on PC. This is consistent with what my husband's doctor told me. Their advice was to keep eating like he normally does. Now is this also true for occasional alcohol consumption and sweets (say one glass and one treat a week)? My husband has gone six months with no sweets, no alcohol, and no meat whatsoever. I'm very proud of him, but my heart really goes out when I see him missing out on all the delicious occasional treats!


Tony's wife.

47 Replies

Poor guy! I think he's done his penance and he can stop torturing himself now. Whatever influences diet has on cancer are accumulated over a lifetime. There is no evidence that those epigenetic changes can be reversed over a few years. Drink the wine!

anthonyq in reply to Tall_Allen

OMG! You are something else, Tall Allen! Thank you! I'm headed to the kitchen right now to grab that bottle of Malbec I've been enjoying behind his back. Now that is GREAT news.

Life is short, enjoy the dessert and a glass of wine!!! You all deserve it!!

During chemo my Drs said "eat anything you can stomach" But no alcohol. Later when I learned Taxotere had alcohol as one of the solvents for chemicals in it, he said OK to glass of wine or a beer. No bottle of wine and no 6 pack. Lived on Rare beef BBQ with lots of smoke and fried eggs. One glass of wine and one beer per week. Lots of sauerkraut and steamed greens with vinegar. Couldn't stand any bread or pasta. Turkey, pork were awful. Kielbasa with cabbage or brown rice with raisins. Sound like some odd mixtures, but that is what tasted good enough to eat. You have to try out of normal taste range to survive. Oh, and strong cheese (swiss, romano, parmisian) and tapioca pudding with cinnamon and nutmeg for sweet.

Good luck and keep eating. I've lost ten pounds in the last year. Still eating lots of green and salads, but I like them. At most 1/3 of the meat I used to eat, just don't want more.

Haven't had my beer for the week. Think I may just go pop a top!!


paulofaus in reply to Shooter1

While on chemo, I opened 6 bottles of premium wine and I was convinced they had all 'turned'. I tipped two down the sink and gave 4 open bottles away. The people who received the open bottles said they were 'amazingly good'. I guess it was me.

Shooter1 in reply to paulofaus

Tastes were definitely off. Shame to have wasted that good wine. Probably could have enjoyed Boone's Farm.


Not you. It was the chemo.

Cheers to that Shooter1! I'm toasting to your health!

Unless i need to loose weight i eat as i want. Its been 7 1/2 years. I don't think diet now makes a short term difference.

I have tended to pay close attention to large epidemiological studies. Some sneer at them & rightly say that they prove nothing & are only good for hypothesis building, but 14 years ago, at age 56, there were few options remaining after a failed RP & failed salvage radiation, so I went looking for clues in the scientific literature. (I remain a fan of supplements too, due to the studies.)

So, when the Health Professionals Follow-up Study (1995) identified tomato sauce, tomato juice, and pizza as 3 of only 4 foods (the 4th was strawberries) that, in terms of total tomato intake, seemed to reduce PCa incidence by a third, I upped my intake of cooked tomatoes & went looking for a credible lycopene product.

Over the years, having read a number of other epidemiological studies, I found no reason to eat more fruit, cut out alcohol, etc, etc. i.e. all of the boiler-plate advice that we are bombarded with.

About the only things that seemed prudent to avoid were high levels of dairy & alpha-linolenic acid.

I drink more than a glass of wine every day. I lost my taste for desserts & candy many years ago, but the fear of sugar itself is largely due to internet misinformation. I will eat the occassional piece of a full-fat cheese. & I make no special requests when friends are doing the cooking.

If I were to go vegan, it would not be the low fat kind, & it would be because veganism permits one to be selectively deficient in an array of nutrients. One might be able to reduce IGF-I by limiting intake of a single amino acid, for instance. But a vegan diet is a little too austere for me.

What is becoming increasingly clear, is that the best way of improving survival via diet, is by lowering BMI. The culprit is actually visceral fat - organ fat - not the belly fat one can pinch. It is very difficult to do this on a high carbohydrate diet.


deano58 in reply to pjoshea13

Patrick that is very comforting information coming from someone who has such a wealth of knowledge of Pca.

FCoffey in reply to pjoshea13

I'm in the best health of my life - because I have prostate cancer. It got me off my ass to exercise, watch what I eat, reduce stress, and so forth.

I'm literally a different man than I was in 2012, when a knowledgeable team of doctors diagnosed my gut issues. Long story short, I'm quite allergic to casein, milk protein, and never new it. I loved cheese. But after 6 months of avoiding it my gut was a different thing entirely.

Now I eat seasonally. More meat in the winter when veggies aren't so great. In the summer we join a CSA and get flooded with fresh veggies every week. So in summertime I am an obligate vegetarian just trying to keep up with the food. It's not a sacrifice, the food is excellent, far better than what you can find in a store.

Like you I lost my taste for sugary sweets long ago, before I knew about the cancer. But I drink wine, eat fresh fruit in season, and will happily accept a desert when dining with friends.

What many folks seem to miss is that a study that narrowly focuses on e.g., alcohol, can probably find something bad that happens when you drink.

But there are always good things and bad things, and plenty of good things happen when you drink. Relaxation, laughter, the company of friends and loved ones, those things aren't factored into a study of something like liver enzymes. But that is almost certainly part of the reason moderate drinkers tend to live longer than teetotalers or heavy drinkers.

Cancer is stressful enough. No need to add to that by obsessing over diet. I tinker with my diet when it amuses me, but I don't let it weigh too heavily on me.

anthonyq in reply to FCoffey

Great answer! I concur.

Even it does, I'm not going out a I'm going out red wine, red meat, and red velvet :)

Amen to that!

Just enjoy your life brother...there is no hard evidence about food and drink,most of it is bullshit....all things in moderation and enjoy. Go well

Probably should not drink while on chemo or being treated with other drugs with interaction with alcohol. Outside of that, moderation.

I may be the wrong person to answer you but here goes....I am in my 7th year of PCa. Was Dxd 4 years ago, no symptoms till then so was Stage 4. I checked diet with my MedOnce and apart from reducing alcohol reducing -not stopping! I have not changed anything. Gone from 200 PSA to 0.03 to 0.06 (current 0.04). Red wine excellent.

anthonyq in reply to Scruffybut1

Congrats on that milestone!

Spoke to my husbands oncologist about his diet. He stated that in several studies it appears that over the long term those who went vegan (or close to it) had medication success approximately 2 months longer than those who did not eat vegan. For my husband it was a no brainer. He's a foody who loves his food and wine.

LarrySiegfried in reply to cloc

That's me to a T ..I'm a chef and a foodie...My Med Oncologist also believes that it's all BS and long term survival won't improve by denying yourself what you enjoy...Life is meant to be one gets out alive ;)

Stay Blessed and keep up the good fight..

Words of wisdom, Larry! Will do!

My doctor at md Anderson told me to eat more red meat,my doctor at home said it was ok to have a glass of wine, who knows

I'm a Scotch man myself salute!!!

I think I have enough on my mind not to indulge in what still makes me enjoy life. I eat what I want and drink when I want to. Its hard enough coming to grips with this decease . I feel the great but if I had to substitute a cardboard meal for my Prime rib and Dewars I'd be one pissed off guy.

Amen to that !

Reminds me of a well known public figure here in Australia who had a Liver transplant,

and who is widely criticized for enjoying an occasional glass of wine.

But as he says... '' You still have to live your life"!.

I say if you want to buy the car of your dreams buy it, vacation of a life time take it after all we're all on borrowed time anyway from the day the doctor slaps our bottoms. I've always wanted a 2002 BMW 540i the nicest, classiest sedan ever made by BMW so I searched the web for the one of my dreams and it gets delivered to my house today. I think I'll put a Prime rib on the grill pour myself a Scotch and plan my dream vacation. Salute!

OldFart81 in reply to leo2634

Fabulous, Leo...just fabulous! Good 4 U.

anthonyq in reply to leo2634

Congrats Leo, and well-deserved! Have one on me, Sante!

ARIES29 in reply to leo2634

Good one Leo,we are only here once!

TFBUNDY in reply to leo2634

Scotch AFTER the drive. I hope it's everything you hope for. ENJOY!

Yesterday cooked live lobsters I brought from Nova Scotia a day before. My family and friends were over and we enjoyed lobsters with melted butter and beer. I generally follow strict no-starch/no-sugar diet (because of autoimmune condition). As far as alcohol, a couple drinks a week won't hurt, but makes a long count towards normal QoL. Life is good, live it! ))

leo2634 in reply to henukit

Enjoy life now while we still can . Now I'm going to sit and admire my BMW I waited all my life for pour a Scotch and listen to my favorite music.

anthonyq in reply to henukit

Doesn't get any better than Lobsters and beer, although my wife would add stinky French cheeses to that list!

I did a six months chemo trial in 2004. My restrictions were as follows: no dairy. No alcolholic beverages. With that said, one drink of any flavor and one bowl of ice cream during the two week period of no chemo - there were two! - were ok. I found that I didn't want them. As far as red meat, he said eat as I needed to keep my body strong. Good luck.

Gourd Dancer.

Your doc is right. There is no empirical evidence to factually support any special diet or supplement to slow progression. Calcium MAY help slow osteoporosis and exercise most certainly has been empirically proven to decrease fatigue. It is so enticing to seek “snake oil” solutions but unless the findings are replicated ,the sample size is adequate and the methodology is double blind there is simply no fact based evidence to date. Good rest, a balanced diet, a loving partner and an experienced medical oncologist is the best we can do. Since I do not know how long I have I am going to enjoy life to it’s fullest, eat and drink in moderation and redouble random acts of kindness to others.

anthonyq in reply to Stelle

So very well said, Stelle! Kindness to others goes a LONG WAY!

My doctor is very skeptical with the alkaline diet. Every time I throw a question on this topic, it always responds that it is not proven.

But he told me if it suits you, do it.

But he told me that little pleasures from time to time sure help me to be better.

I follow my criteria and, on occasion, your advice.

If I had a dollar for every time I read someone online who says that sugar feeds cancer, I would take a very nice trip somewhere.

Thank you so much for posting this question. I'd been feeling so frustrated with the sheer volume of contradictory fact and fiction around dietary issues with PCa, and the many restraints involved, that I'd just been sticking with a heart healthy diet and a moderate alcohol intake, sort of walking the middle ground until the sun came out, which, I believe, it now has. The responses indicate a pretty clear consensus, based on members' reasoned explorations and observations on the topic. For those of us who love good food, wine and spirits, this helps take some of the edge off the ADT and other treatment misery. The future will bring what it will, but living positively in the now is key to quality of life.


Everything in moderation, except alcohol! A bottle of Malbec and a steak every once in a while is good for the spirit!😁

Hey All,

I was diagnosed in 2009, robotic removal (clean in the margins of course), a year later 13 weeks rescue Radiation, and now 6 years on Lupron, and the last 2 the add on of Zytiga and Prednosone. PSA is 9 (4+5), and last check PSA was at 0.234 just before my last Lupron shot.

I spent last year going back and forth from the Bay Area to Tijuana for business. I ate what I wanted, and drank what I wanted. If I had attempted to be austere, or Vegan I would have been miserable.

Do what you need to do to enjoy your life, otherwise why live?

I have not sen anything credible that links prostate cancer to any nutritional/lifestyle factors. I went off booze while I was on taxotere since taxotere puts a high strain on the kidneys and liver and I figured they didn't need any more. Didn't miss the hooch though I've always been a regular moderate drinker - part of it was my taste buds were destroyed by the taxotere. Listen to your body; it will tell you pretty quick if you're overdoing something.

I think I'll just pop open a bottle of chocolate chip ice cream.

Remember everything in moderation, just like our sex lives.


Good Luck and Good Health.

j-o-h-n Tuesday 05/29/2018 10:00 PM EDT

anthonyq in reply to j-o-h-n

Hahah! Well said, j-o-h-n.

I say do NOT worry so much, but rather, focus on living large with the time you have left. None of what you noted, will have a major impact and will in fact, reduce your quality of life. I also suggest you make a good bucket list and start to work on doing things that you want to, for as long as you are able. !!!!

Thanks for this thread guys. Last night couple of beers and yes---a cigar--first one in a while--on the porch with friends talking about sports, books, movies, adventure.......the things that make life worth living...tonite pomegranite juice and ginger ale with the kids....moderation...moderation....moderation

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