Individual components of metabolic syndrome have been linked to an increased risk for prostate cancers. We hypothesized that metabolic syndrome itself could confer an increased risk for incident prostate cancer.
The participants were a population-based sample of 1,880 men from eastern Finland without history of cancer or diabetes mellitus at baseline.
The metabolic syndrome (WHO criteria) was present in 357 (19%) of subjects. During an average follow-up of 13 years, a total of 183 cancers occurred, of which 56 were due to prostate cancer. The metabolic syndrome at baseline was related to a 1.9-fold (95% confidence interval, 1.1-3.5) risk of prostate cancer after adjustment for age, alcohol consumption, physical fitness, and energy, fat, fiber, calcium, vitamin E, and alpha-linolenic acid intake. The association between metabolic syndrome and risk of prostate cancer was stronger among overweight and obese men with a body mass index > or = 27 kg/m2 (adjusted relative risk, 3.0; 95% confidence interval, 1.2-7.3) than in lighter men (relative risk, 1.8; 95% confidence interval, 0.7-4.7).
Middle-aged men with the metabolic syndrome were more likely to develop prostate cancer in this prospective population-based study. This finding suggests that efforts to curb the epidemic of overweight and sedentary lifestyle and the accompanying metabolic syndrome may decrease the risk for prostate cancer.