Prostate supplements: worth it?

Prostate cancer is the second-leading cause of cancer deaths in men, so supplements intended to aid in prostate health are a hot commodity. Urologic oncologist Seth Lerner, MD, director of the prostate program at White Plains Hospital, recommends doing some research before you buy that bottle of vitamins. “For decades, there have been reports of natural remedies for prostate health, ranging from something as simple as pumpkin seeds to saw palmetto,” says Lerner. “Several have been studied in randomized trials, and most have been found not to be any more effective than a placebo.” Lerner notes that selenium and vitamin E were previously thought to protect against or lower the risk of cancer, but studies have found no substantiation of this. “It was studied in a recent national randomized prospective trial, of which White Plains Hospital was a participating site, and it yielded a negative result,” he says.