A recent animal study found walnuts reduced the growth of prostate cancer tumors up to 40 percent.
Dr. Paul Davis, of the University of California, found that in addition to inhibiting prostate cancer development, the mice had lower levels of a protein, IGF (insulin-like growth factor) that is strongly linked to prostate cancer,
It appears that the omega-3 fatty acid rich walnuts, antioxidants, and other plant chemicals have the ability to suppress gene activity within the prostate cancer cells.
These findings show the additional benefits of walnuts, already known to be good for the heart and brain.
The genetically programmed to get prostate cancer mice were fed for 4.5 months (18 weeks) either a diet equivalent to a human consuming 2.4 ounces of walnuts per day, or one with an equal amount of fat from other sources.
"This study shows that when mice with prostate tumors consume an amount of walnuts that could easily be eaten by a man, tumor growth is controlled," Davis said in a statement. "This leaves me very hopeful that it could be beneficial in patients."