Update 3/21/20. Chondroitin sulfate is found in many arthritis supplements and can be purchased by itself as well. In this review, I want to discuss research that appears to hint to a connection between chondroitin sulfate and prostate cancer. This is a topic that a lot of people will feel is controversial. I agree. It is. But, because chondroitin is found in so many arthritis supplements I think people need to know this. What you are reading now is actually a follow-up to my review on glucosamine so see that review also.
Chondroitin Sulfate And Prostate Cancer
Much of the research on this issue stems from a study published in 1999, titled Elevated levels of peritumoral chondroitin sulfate are predictive of poor prognosis in patients treated by radical prostatectomy for early-stage prostate cancer, which was published in the journal, Cancer Research.
This investigation noted men with prostate cancer had higher levels of chondroitin sulfate in their prostates than men who don't have prostate cancer. That doesn't exactly prove chondroitin causes prostate cancer. Rather, it only seems to show they may be related somehow.
In another investigation men with prostate cancer had higher levels of chondroitin sulfate in their prostates.
Prior to this, researchers published a study noting a component of chondroitin sulfate called versican made it easier for cancer cells to gain entrance to the prostate.
Research Showing No Association
The research associating prostate cancer with chondroitin is not perfect. For example, no connection was seen by researchers who surveyed 35,239 men aged 50-76.
Chondroitin Supplements And Prostate Cancer
The studies are interesting but the big question is do chondroitin sulfate supplements cause prostate cancer? Is cancer really a side effect of these supplements? For the moment I don't think anyone can say yes or no.
Some research only hints that elevations in chondroitin sulfate may have a connection to prostate cancer. Remember, chondroitin sulfate is made naturally in the body.
So far, no study has proven chondroitin sulfate supplements cause prostate cancer. To be fair, no study has specifically tried to test if this was true either. In other words, nobody has randomly given 1000 men chondroitin supplements -or a placebo – and followed them for 10 years to see what happens.
To be honest, I'm disappointed in the dietary supplement industry for not addressing this better.
What's Better Chondroitin or Glucosamine
When it comes to helping arthritis pain, I feel the evidence is better for glucosamine sulfate. Yes, there is some research on the glucosamine + chondroitin but overall, I feel the proof for glucosamine sulfate is better.
For more insights see these other reviews too:
Based on the mixed results from research, suggest waiting for better research before using this supplement. I feel this is especially good to remember by in any man who:
- Has a personal or family history of prostate cancer
- Has had prostate cancer in the past
There are better arthritis supplements out there including glucosamine sulfate.
Verdict: Chondroitin Sulfate & Prostate Cancer
Right now it's anyone's guess. The preliminary evidence suggests it might. The sad thing is this research has been out there for a long time. Nobody seems to want to investigate it further. That's sad given the potential ramifications. If you are a man reading this, talk to your doctor or urologist or oncologist about the latest research. If that's what comes from this, then I've achieved my goal – and that's the important thing.