The reality of lowered testosterone and higher oestrogen in men counters orthodox theories of prostate cancer

The reality of lowered testosterone and higher oestrogen in men counters orthodox theories of prostate cancer

Increasingly, research on testosterone levels in males runs counter to the modern medical theories and treatment of prostate cancer. Could this be the reason, orthodox treatment of the disease is so unsuccessful(4)?

For more than a decade now at CANCERactive, we have been telling people that the often heard mantra of You have prostate cancer because of high testosterone levels’ could well be tosh.

If high testosterone caused prostate cancer, there would be an epidemic amongst 16 -18 year old young men!

One 2016 study(5) followed men who had prostate cancer and were on Active Surveillance (’Watch and Wait’) and showed that those given more testosterone across a three year period resulted in no increase in prostate cancer growth or aggression. This runs smack-bang opposite to the current orthodox medical world’s ’Androgen Hypothesis’ view that testosterone levels need to be cut to avoid cancer progression.

Estrogen increases prostate size

Back in 2005/6, we presented research that showed men had a higher risk of an enlarged prostate if their oestrogen (estrogen) levels increased. Oestrogen a group of chemicals - one, oestrone (estrone), is the female sex hormone; another oestradiol (estradiol), is produced by aromatase enzymes in your fat stores - it causes havoc inside cells. 

Other factors - like cows’ dairy consumption - have direct links to prostate cancer, according to research from the Kaolinska Institute in Sweden. We even covered research about too much saturated fat consumption in your teenage, formative, years being linked to prostate cancer later in life. Conversely, taking a daily fish oil supplement seems to be protective.

We have also looked at studies from Australia, Singapore, Japan and MD Anderson in Texas, which all pointed in one direction: Namely that as a man ages, his oestrogen levels increase, while his testosterone levels decline. And this leads to an era of higher prostate cancer risk.

And research shows you need both hormones present for prostate cancer. Why? Because oestrogen turns nice, safe testosterone into DHT, DiHydroTestosterone, which is the aggressor that causes prostate cancer.

When, back in 2006 we asked a UK prostate cancer expert about this, he said it was an ‘interesting theory, but we’ve found that oestrogen is very successful in treating prostate cancer so it can’t be right’. However, the ‘theory’ came from top Professor in prostate oncology Timothy Thompson at MD Anderson. And also, oestrogen was used to treat prostate cancer – but it was found not to be ultimately ‘successful’ and gives about three years of respite after which the cancer is often more aggressive. 

However, current orthodox medical treatment for prostate cancer still aims to cut nasty old testosterone.

High testosterone is protective

There is clear research against the ‘high testosterone is dangerous’ argument. 

   * Firstly, we know that the higher your testosterone levels the lower your risk of death from all health causes: In a study of 3,942 men, the risk of death by any cause was decreased in men with higher testosterone and growth hormone (IGF-1) levels. High testosterone promotes health, survival and longevity(1).  

   * Testosterone has an affect on brain function and low testosterone increases your risk of getting Alzheimer’s disease. And we know that stress can deplete testosterone levels and reduce libido.

   * One important study was a meta-analysis of 18 epidemiological studies by Peter Boyle at the Prevention Institute in Lyon. They looked at more than 30 studies and showed that men with the highest levels of testosterone had no greater risk of prostate cancer than those with the lowest levels. They also looked at 24 randomised, placebo controlled studies involving hormone replacement therapy (using Testosterone). They concluded that the Testosterone supplementation neither increased PSA levels significantly, nor caused more cases of prostate cancer. 

   * Testosterone levels are declining overall, especially in men over 50 years of age, while levels of oestrogen are increasing. And this is the highest risk group for prostate cancer.

Testosterone levels in men are declining overall? For example, in 2002, Travison et al. showed show a massive decline in 1,532 Massachusetts’s men’s testosterone levels over the past 20 years not related to ‘normal’ aging or other health and lifestyle factors that would normally affect testosterone levels. Several studies have confirmed this finding since.

We also know that lifestyle issues like higher body fat levels in men are linked with higher levels of oestrogen, and that overweight men develop more prostate cancer.

But we also know that environmental chemical pollution can decrease testosterone levels.

Common chemicals that once in the body can mimic the action of oestrogen reduce testosterone levels and sperm count - 

      *  for example phthalates (2) 

      *  for example, lead (3) ; 

      *  for example BPA – Chinese study of factory workers led by Dr. De-Kun Li, Kaiser Permanente, California. 

And we know that prostate cancer has also been linked to 13 such chemicals (Cancer Watch). 

When males are young, their testosterone keeps them fit and lean. As their testosterone declines they become fatter, and more likely to have oestradiol increases.

Clinical Trials - giving testosterone to men with Prostate Cancer!

It’s time to talk about the work of Professor Samuel R Denmeade, an expert in oncology and urology at Johns Hopkins Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center.

His team is actually studying whether giving me testosterone will improve progression-free survival times over the drug enzalutamide (Xtandi) in men with advance prostate cancer, who have already had abiraterone. 

What makes this interesting is that the trial will give testosterone to prostate cancer patients whose cancer has progressed as castration-resistent. And Xtandi was developed for men whose prostate cancer progressed and spread DESPITE them having surgery or drugs to cut their testosterone!   

In other words, this research is going to do the opposite of conventional theory.   

The theory is called ’Bipolar Cycling’ or ’Bipolar Androgen Treatment’ (BAT) where patients experience alternate low and high levels of testosterone.

This is a part of an ongoing phase II trial, the RESTORE Trial(6) - RE-sensitising with Supraphysiologic Testosterone to Overcome Resistance. The men in the RESTORE trial are all on Zoladex or similar.

Early days yet but definitely positive signs in the RESTORE Trial - for example PSA fell in 40% of men; and by 50% in 30% of the trial group.  

Could low testosterone be the ultimate cause of prostate cancer?

Are you still convinced ‘high testosterone is dangerous’?

At least if you develop prostate cancer and the treatment proposed sets out to cut your testosterone levels, the information above might help you ask more-informed questions.

Go to: Thorough review of Prostate cancer: symptoms, causes and treatment alternatives 


1. Steroids. 2012 Jan;77(1-2):52-8. doi:10.1016/j.steroids.2011.10.005. Epub 2011 Oct 20. Friedrich N, Schneider HJ, Haring R, Nauck M, Völzke H, Kroemer HK, Dörr M, Klotsche J, Jung-Sievers C, Pittrow D, Lehnert H, März W, Pieper L, Wittchen HU, Wallaschofski H, Stalla GK. Institute of Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine, Ernst Moritz Arndt University, Greifswald, Germany.

2. Toxicological Sciences, 2008, 105(1):153-165; 

3.  Infertility, 1978, 1(1):33-51

4. /cancer-active-page-link.aspx?n=3392&title=Orthodox-treatment-a-waste-of-time-in-men-over-55-diagnosed-with-prostate-cancer





July - Oct 2013 Cancer Watch
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