For prostate cancer soy is just a toy

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snake-oil-bottle-cropped-labelIn today s so what? news, yet another dietary supplement has failed when subjected to the scrutiny of properly conducted clinical trials.

As reported in the current issue of JAMA, men who had prostate cancer and had undergone radical prostatectomy saw no benefit from taking a supplement containing soy protein during a two-year study. The rate of recurrence was the same as that found in the control group that took placebo.

ACSH s Dr. Josh Bloom is certainly not surprised, and believes that the trial was based on a false premise. He says, The prevalence of prostate cancer in Asian countries, where soy intake is high, is much lower than in Western countries. However, to assume that simply consuming more soy would then have any impact on the outcome of the disease is wishful thinking and oversimplified. There are likely to be multiple reasons for the differences seen in different parts of the world.

He continues, This is reminiscent of the shark cartilage flop from a few years ago. Someone concluded that since sharks have cartilage rather than bone and don t get cancer (which is false), consuming shark cartilage would prevent cancer. Needless to say, this went down in flames, but not before thousands of people wasted their money (and still do) on an utterly useless product.

ACSH s President, Dr. Elizabeth Whelan adds, The shark cartilage scam and much more is beautifully explained in ACSH trustee Dr. Paul Offit s new book entitled Do You Believe in Magic? The Sense and Nonsense of Alternative Medicine. This is one of the most important books in recent memory and should be on the top of your must read list.