What Increases Your Risk for Prostate Cancer?

Some things can increase your chances of getting prostate cancer.

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Some things can increase your chances of getting prostate cancer. These things are called risk factors. But many men who get prostate cancer don't have any of these risk factors. And some men who have risk factors don't get this cancer.


Being older than 50 is the main risk factor for prostate cancer. About 6 out of 10 new prostate cancers are found in men who are 65 or older.1

Family history

Your chances of getting prostate cancer are higher if other men in your family have had it. Your risk is doubled if your father or brother had prostate cancer. Your risk also depends on the age at which your relative was diagnosed.

Men whose families carry the gene changes that cause breast cancer (BRCA1 or BRCA2) may be at higher risk for prostate cancer.


Prostate cancer is more common among African-American men than men of other races. African-American men also have a greater chance of getting the kind of prostate cancer that grows and spreads.

In men of other races, non-Hispanic white men are more likely to get prostate cancer than Hispanic or Asian-American men.

Other risk factors

What you eat may affect your risk. Men who live in countries where people eat more red meat and fats are more likely to be diagnosed with and die from prostate cancer, according to some studies. Eating more lycopene, found in tomatoes and beets, may reduce your risk.

Hormones may also affect your risk. Researchers are studying the link between high testosterone levels and prostate cancer.

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