PSA testing; latest news may open door to “real” prevention.

Brian Williams, anchor

This news was called a huge “game-changer” by Brian Williams on the NBC Nightly News on May 21, 2012. Along with Robert Bazell, they talked about this highly controversial finding by the U.S. Preventive Task Force. From the New York Times article (see link below)

In a controversial finding that will affect at least 44 million American men, a government task force published its final recommendations against regular prostate cancer screening, concluding that the harms of the simple blood test far outweigh any potential benefit.

The recommendations, from the United States Preventive Services Task Force, offer the most detailed breakdown to date of the potential risks and benefits of the prostate specific antigen blood test, commonly known as the P.S.A. test. Most important, the task force found that, at best, one man in every 1,000 given the P.S.A. test may avoid death as a result of the screening, while another man for every 3,000 tested will die prematurely as a result of complications from prostate cancer treatment and dozens more will be seriously harmed.

The good news. At least the “system” is now realizing that large scale screening is not getting the job done when it comes to the prevention of cancer. In fact, as the article reports, the PSA test may cause more harm than good. This latest news could actually help to open the door to more emphasis by the media on “real” prevention—the kind that focuses on the causes, not the symptoms.

The bad news. The “system” still refuses to tell us all about the leading cause of cancer according to Dr. T. Colin Campbell of Cornell. Quite simply, it is our toxic Western diet. And our “system” NEVER fully explains to the public—exactly what we should be eating to give ourselves the best possible chance of avoiding ALL chronic diseases, including cancer.

Digger Phelps

But the debate is on as many men believe that their lives have been saved by the routine PSA screening that has been the norm for the past twenty years. One of them was Digger Phelps (former Notre Dame basketball coach) who appeared on CBS This Morning on 5-22-12.

He thought that the task force was sending the wrong message and was giving men a reason not to go for their screening this year. He was also adamantly promoting more awareness for prostate cancer with millions of men “wearing blue” like the millions of women have been wearing pink.

Although I am saddened by the news of anyone having this disease, I am more saddened by the simple fact that people are not being told about the leading cause of cancer. While there are many life-saving anecdotes (like Coach Phelps) out there, think how many more lives could be saved if another 100 million men were told about exactly what they need to eat in order to give themselves the very best chance of eliminating the leading cause of all cancers in their bodies. Nevertheless, the debate goes on…with hardly ever a mention of diet. From the article:

The suggestion that men should give up annual prostate cancer screening has met with resistance, particularly from prostate cancer advocacy groups as well as some medical groups, including the American Urological Association.

The Bottom Line. Since you can no longer depend on “screening” to prevent your cancer, maybe you’re ready to spend less than $36 to learn how to take charge of your health. What greater gift could you give to yourself, your children and grandchildren?

Handy 3-piece take-charge-of-your-health kit—from

Want to find out how healthy your family is eating? Take our free 4Leaf Diagnostic Survey. It takes less than five minutes and you can score it yourself. After taking the survey, please give me your feedback as it will be helpful in the development of our future 4Leaf app for smartphones. Send feedback to

My response to NY Times asking for my experience with PSA testing. My experience with PSA testing? Non-existent. I learned long ago that going to the doctor was the third leading cause of death in this country. But I only stopped going to the doctor for routine checkups after learning the “big picture” truth about nutrition AND taking some major steps to take charge of my own health—about ten years ago.

Don’t get me wrong; I greatly respect our medical profession and gladly utilize their services when I have an accident—like rupturing my Achilles tendon playing tennis 18 months ago. But I am simply not a customer of our “disease care system” when it comes to the $100 billion plus business for cancer screening alone in this country.

We gladly spend $100 billion for screening but our “system” spends no money telling people that, according to Dr. T. Colin Campbell (The China Study), our toxic Western diet is the leading cause of cancer. Then there’s “searching for the cure” and “talking to your doctor about what drug is right for you.”

See my post on that situation:  “Searching for the cure”—has taken on a life of its own.

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J. Morris Hicks, working daily to promote health, hope and harmony on planet Earth.

For help in your own quest to take charge of your health, you might find some useful information at our 4Leaf page or some great recipes at Lisa’s 4Leaf Kitchen.

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Blogging daily at…from the seaside village of Stonington, Connecticut – Be well and have a great day.

—J. Morris Hicks, board member, T. Colin Campbell Foundation

About J. Morris Hicks

A former strategic management consultant and senior corporate executive with Ralph Lauren in New York, J. Morris Hicks has always focused on the "big picture" when analyzing any issue. In 2002, after becoming curious about our "optimal diet," he began a study of what we eat from a global perspective ---- discovering many startling issues and opportunities along the way. In addition to an MBA and a BS in Industrial Engineering, he holds a certificate in plant-based nutrition from the T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies, where he has also been a member of the board of directors since 2012. Having concluded that our food choices hold the key to the sustainability of our civilization, he has made this his #1 priority---exploring all avenues for influencing humans everywhere to move back to the natural plant-based diet for our species.
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2 Responses to PSA testing; latest news may open door to “real” prevention.

  1. Leo S. says:

    The following videos discuss the relation of plant nutrition to prostate and other health problems.

  2. maule5662h says:

    I have some male friends re prostate cancer. One recently did get radiation – now with ED and with bowel control problem. The other, age 63, called me this week to report travails — PSA 7.2 — much testing that he had to pay for himself, finally had needle biopsies, evaluated as Level 7 = beyond “watchful waiting.” FACING RADIATION, TOO. (My PSA 1.2, no problem)

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