Hair Color Is A Factor That Helps Estimate Prostate Cancer Risk In Men

prostate cancer riskIt is a known fact that our hair can tell a lot of things about us: what kind of persons we are, how we feel about ourselves in this world, and certainly what health problems we have. Improper hair or a lack of hair care can tell that this person is not very much interested in the way he or she looks, thus can be having some personal problems. Poor hair is an indicator of many possible disorders and health problems. However, in addition to that, it turned out that hair care can also give information about possible diseases and health risks the person can be exposed to. In particular, according to the latest findings of a research group at Finland’s National Institute for Health and Medicine in Helsinki, published earlier this month in an online issue of the British Journal of Cancer, hair color of modern men can be understood as a key factor to tell what chances this man has to suffer from prostate cancer later in life.

The Finnish experts have found scientific evidence to the fact that naturally red-haired men have over 50 per cent less prostate cancer risk compared to those men who are naturally blond, or have dark hair. Unfortunately, the scientists could not find any cause or a factor responsible for the discovered phenomena. They have proposed a hypothesis that genetics can be the main cause, since genetics is the factor responsible for our natural hair pigmentation. As we already know (see this article), there are plenty of naturally red haired people in such countries as Ireland (about 10 per cent), Scotland (about 13 pr cent), the United Kingdom (about 6 per cent). It is estimated that not more than 1 per cent of modern men have natural red hair, thus can enjoy the discovered benefits of this hair color. However, it was found out earlier that people with ginger hair are at higher risk of developing other types of cancer, primarily skin cancer.

Moreover, in addition to that, the researchers at Louisville University in Kentucky found that ginger-haired people are more sensitive to lower temperatures and to pains comparing to people with other hair colors. They are convinced that gene MC1R is something to blame for that, the gene which is also known as “hair color gene”, the one that gives us the hair color. The scientists suppose that this very gene can be responsible for uncontrolled processes linked to cell growth and development, which, in turn, can bring to tumors and cancer. Since the researchers failed to find the links between two factors, many specialists tend to question their findings. ‘This research does indicate an association between having naturally red hair and a reduced risk of developing prostate cancer. But the strength and exact nature of this association is still unclear,’ Iain Frame, director of research at Prostate Cancer UK commented on the findings of his colleagues.

Prostate cancer and increased prostate cancer risks in modern men are very serious concerns in today’s society. It is estimated that every year about 32,000 men in the United Kingdom are diagnosed with this serious disease, and about 10,000 men lose their lives every year due to prostate cancer related conditions. Prostate cancer risks increase drastically for the men over 50. For the reported study, Finnish experts looked at the information collected on over 20,000 people, and they found that red hair is lined to lower prostate cancer risks. However, it is underlined that only 1 per cent of the participants had naturally red hair, that is why many experts and specialists tend to require more studies in order to find more scientific evidence to the discovered links. ‘We would not wish any man with red hair who has a concern about prostate cancer to hold back from seeking advice,’ the Prostate Cancer UK specialists said to the media.


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