Men who are sexually active in their 50s may be at a reduced risk of developing prostate cancer, new research suggests.
Scientists at the University of Nottingham propose that having an active sex life, which may include intercourse or masturbation, helps remove toxins from the body.
The researchers followed approximately 400 men who had been diagnosed with prostate cancer before the age of 60, as well as 400 control subjects.
They found that men who reported being very sexually active in their 20s and 30s were more likely to have developed cancer.
Meanwhile, those who reported a high amount of sexual activity in their 50s were slightly less likely to have prostate cancer, while behavior in their 40s seemed to have no effect.
“As men age and accumulate toxins from the diet or through their lungs, sexual activity may help release them,” study leader Polyxeni Dimitripolou said, according to UK newspaper the Telegraph.
“Studies have found toxins in the semen and the fluid produced in the prostate. As you age it is more important to flush them out.”
Some men who want to keep their prostate healthy have turned to herbal supplements containing saw palmetto.