Enlarged Prostate Risk Reduced by Drinking Alcohol

About half of men 50 years of age suffer from an enlarged prostate. When not caused by cancer, it’s called benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH). The condition causes urination problems. The proportion of sufferers increases to about 80% at age 70. So it’s a very common problem. Fortunately, enlarged prostate risk is reduced by drinking alcohol.


The symptoms of  benign enlarged prostate vary. However, the most common ones involve changes or problems with urination.

  • Urgent need to urinate.
  • A weak, interrupted stream.
  • Leaking or dribbling.
  • Frequent urination, especially at night.


Men who have two or more alcoholic drinks per daily are 33% less likely to develop enlarged prostate than abstainers.

enlarged prostate riskThose who have at least four servings of vegetables each day also enjoy reduced risk. However, eating red meat daily increases the risk. So does consuming high levels of fat. Dietary supplements have no effect on enlarged prostate risk.

The symptoms of BPH are similar to those of other conditions. Therefore, men are wise to discuss their symptoms and medical history with their doctor.

Better safe than sorry.


Kristal, A., et al. Dietary Patterns, Supplement Use, and the Risk of Symptomatic Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia. Results from the Prostate Cancer Prevention Trial. Am J Epidemiol, 2008, 167(8), 925-934.

Resources on Enlarged Prostate Risk


A.D.A.M. Enlarged Prostate. (video) NY: Films Media Group, 2013.

Bazar, R. The Prostate Health Diet. Mansons Landing, BC: R. Bazar, 2013.

Jones, J. The Complete Prostate Book. What Every Man Needs to Know. Amherst, NY: Prometheus, 2005.

Klein, E., et al. So You’re Having Prostate Surgery. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley, 2003.

Taguchi, Y. The Prostate. Everything You Need to Know about the Man Gland. Westmount, Que: Linda Leith, 2014.


Kang, D., et al. Risk behaviours and benign prostatic hyperplasia. BJU Int, 2004, 93(9), 1241-1245.

Meigs, J., et al. Risk factors for clinical benign prostatic hyperplasia in a community-based population.  J Clin Epide, 2001, 54(9), 935-944.

Paolone, D. Benign prostatic hyperplasia.  Clin Geriat Med, 2010,  26(2), 223-239

Parsons, J., and Im, R. Alcohol consumption is associated with a decreased risk of benign prostatic hyperplasia. J Urol, 2009, 182(4), 1463-1468.

Rohrmann, S., et al. Association of cigarette smoking, alcohol consumption and physical activity with lower urinary tract symptoms. BJU Int, 2005, 96(1), 77-82.