Main | Tuesday, January 27, 2009

New Masturbation/Prostate Cancer Study

According to a new study, frequent masturbation after the age of 50 is good for your prostate. Before 50, not so much.
Masturbation may be good for you – or bad, depending on your age. The solitary sexual activity that is widely practised but little discussed, is linked with an increased risk of prostate cancer when practised frequently by young men in their twenties and thirties, doctors say. But by the time men reach their fifties, it may protect against the disease because it helps remove toxins that have built up over a lifetime.

Prostate cancer is known to be driven by the male hormone testosterone, and men with high levels of testosterone tend to have a higher sex drive and a higher risk of the cancer. But most research has examined older men because prostate cancer is unusual under 50. Researchers at the University of Nottingham studied the link between sexual activity in younger men and the disease to see if it affected their long-term risk. More than 400 men with prostate cancer diagnosed before the age of 60 were questioned about their sexual habits over the preceding decades and the results compared with 400 controls.

The findings showed that those who had been most sexually active in their twenties – having sexual intercourse or masturbating more than 20 times a month – were more likely to have the cancer. Frequent masturbation, but not sexual intercourse, in the twenties and thirties was significantly linked with the later development of prostate cancer. In their 50s men who were most sexually active (more than 10 times a month for sexual intercourse and masturbation combined) enjoyed a small protective effect. The effect was greater when masturbation was assessed on its own.

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