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Men’s Health – The Prostate

Men's Health - The Prostate

The prostate – That tiny little gland, that can be a source of trouble for many men. Statistics show that most men will battle a prostate issue at some point in their lifetime. Only the size of a walnut, the prostate gland helps to control the flow of urine, is responsible for the contractions in an orgasm, and produces a fluid that helps the sperm in fertilization. So it’s no wonder that a little disturbance can cause a lot of discomfort.

Prostate issues happen when there is an infection or swelling in the prostate gland. Any time you feel pain, difficulty with urination, or even erectile dysfunction, its worthwhile visiting your doctor to have your prostate checked for one of the three typical complications:

Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia or BPH – This happens in 50% of men over the age of 50 and at least 90% of men over the age of 80. BPH is a swelling of the prostate gland that is not cancerous or life threatening. The typical symptoms are frequent urges to urinate, especially in the middle of the night and an inability to completely empty the bladder.

Prostate Cancer – Is the most common type of cancer in men and accounts for the 2nd leading cause of death from cancer.

Prostatitis – In men under 50, this is the most common cause of prostate issues. Half the population of adult men will be treated for Prostatitis in their lifetime. Also not cancerous or life threatening, the typical symptoms are pain, urgency to urinate or have a bowel movement, and painful ejaculation.

Conventional medications are directed towards relaxing the prostate to promote urine flow; they do not address the swelling or inflammation of the prostate. Often the root issue of prostate problems lies with hormone levels, nutrient deficiencies, and stress and immune health. Natural health products have long been regarded as effective ways to prevent and treat prostate issues and several stand out:

Zinc: In patients with BPH and Prostatitis, Zinc levels are 1/10th of normal. Taking adequate amounts of zinc can reduce swelling, fight infection, and promote health hormone levels.

Saw Palmetto: This herb has been traditionally used to regulate unhealthy levels of testosterone. Saw Palmetto is also beneficial in reducing pain and inflammation and restoring normal urine flow.

Vitamin D: In the 1990’s researchers made the connection that Prostate cancer was more common in men with lower levels of Vitamin D and less common in places with higher sunlight exposure.

Selenium: As an antioxidant, Selenium can reduce the cell damage that leads to cancer. A recent U.S. study showed that Selenium supplements can cut the risk of Prostate cancer by half.

Phytosterols: These are healthy plant-based oils that have been shown to reduce the swelling of the prostate and also promote healthy hormone levels. A recent study in 2010 showed that Phytosterols decreased the growth of Prostate cancer cells and triggered the death of cancer cells.

In order to prevent prostate complications, strive for a well balanced healthy diet. Choose fresh fruits and vegetables, snack on nuts and seeds, and consider proven natural health products.

Dr. Frank Silva, ND

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