Gym rats and exercise enthusiasts looking to enhance their physique and musculature often consume a range of sports supplements – from protein to creatine to beta-alanine and more – but what if the trade-off was the health of the family jewels?
A population-based study published in the British Journal of Cancer found a relationship between testicular cancer and consumption of a range of 30 different muscle-building supplement pills or powders, though researchers mentioned only three ingredients. They found increased risk among those who started to supplement after age 25, among those who took more than one ingredient, and for those taking them longer than 3 years.
Importantly, the nature of this study – giving a questionnaire to people about past supplement use and then trying to divine a health effect – can, at best, find an association. And association is not the same as causality.
Researchers studied 356 patients with testicular germ cell cancer and 513 controls without cancer also in hospitals in Connecticut and Massachusetts. They asked them if they had consumed any sports supplement product at least once a week for four consecutive weeks between 2006 and 2010.
No specific supplements were named, though the researchers included 30 different ingredients that were found in sports supplements.
The named ingredients were protein, creatine and androstenedione. Researchers surmised that these ingredients could have hormonal effects that could lead to cancer incidence.
Ian: I LOVE H2 is basically magnesium. Whew!