Prostate cancer has been regarded as the second leading cause of death in men throughout the United States. On an average, 180,890 new cases of prostate cancer emerged in the U.S. during 2016 and 26, 120 fatalities were reported.
Apart from cancer, a number of other health problems related to the prostate health can emerge in men, some of them even leading to deaths. Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia is another common condition that affects 90 percent of the men above the age of 70 years. Prostatitis is another common condition occurring in men less than 50 years of age.
Prostate health is an important issue and one of the best ways to maintain is through educating the masses.
The risk of developing different kinds of health problems related to the prostate can be reduced with dietary and lifestyle modifications. If you are unfortunate enough to already suffer from any of these conditions, certain supplements and herbs may help.
What Is the Prostate?
The prostate is one of the primary glands in the male reproductive system. It is equal to the size of a chestnut and is seen surrounding the urethra that lies just beneath the bladder and right above the muscles forming the pelvic floor.
One of the most important functions of the prostate is to produce a fluid that combines with the sperms produced by the testicles and other glands to form semen. The other fluids that take part in semen production include the ones made by seminal vesicle and the bulbourethral gland.
The fluids from all of these glands mix with each other in the urethra and permit the proper functioning of sperm cells. These sperm cells are, in turn, responsible for maintaining the fertility of men.
The muscles forming the prostate are equally important in the process of reproduction. These muscles ensure that the semen is released into the urethra and is expelled out during the process of ejaculation.
The prostate muscles also prevent the semen from gaining entry into the bladder during ejaculation by closing the sphincter muscles.
Another important function served by the prostate is the metabolism of hormones. Testosterone- the male sex hormone, is transformed in the prostate into its active form also known as dihydrotestosterone (DHT).
DHT is an androgen and is said to play a crucial role in puberty. It also helps men to acquire their adult male features.
Diseases of the Prostate
As discussed above, the prostate gland is liable to a lot of diseases, the most common of them being prostate cancer. In addition to the neoplastic proliferation of the prostate, it is also prone to benign hyperplasia and inflammation, otherwise known as prostatitis.
Each of these conditions can be particularly disturbing for the prostate and may even interfere with its normal functioning. So, it is really important to maintain the proper health of the prostate.
How can you improve the prostate health? Keep reading to know more.
Natural Ways to Improve Prostate Health
It is quite possible to make certain changes in your lifestyle and diet and improve the prostate health.
Tomatoes, especially in cooked form, are a rich source of lycopene, a substance crucial for prostate health.
Research has indicated that consuming cooked tomatoes in high quantities can prevent the occurrence of prostate cancer by the provision of lycopene and other antioxidant species.
- Wild-Caught Fish
Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, such as wild fish, can markedly decrease inflammation of the prostate. A review published in Integrative Cancer Therapies has indicated a link between a high consumption of fish and a reduced risk of prostate cancer
- Green Tea
Green tea has been regarded as the best beverage to reduce the signs of aging, particularly because it consists of a high number of antioxidants. It can also induce detoxification and improve the health of the prostate.
A research conducted in Japan involved 49,920 men with ages between 40 to 69 years. All the participants were made to complete a questionnaire regarding their habit of green tea consumption for the past four years.
The data indicated that the consumption of green tea was associated with a decrease in the possibility of advanced prostate cancer. The men who greatly reduced their chances of acquiring prostate cancer were said to consume 5 cups of green tea every day.
- Pumpkin Seeds
Both pumpkin seeds and the pumpkin seed oil has been found to promote prostate health, mainly because of a high amount of carotenoids and other liposoluble vitamins.
Pumpkin seeds are said to contain a high amount of zinc. Zinc possesses diuretic properties can help to empty the bladder and reduce the inflammation. These effects are particularly beneficial while fighting urinary problems and an enlargement of the prostate.
- Avoiding Meat and Dairy
As per a research carried out in Sweden, consuming meat and dairy products in high amounts can increase the risk of prostate cancer. It has also been discussed that men who consume high amounts of calcium are more likely to develop prostate cancer as compared to those who took it in lesser amounts. This might be because calcium can suppress vitamin D and its anti-cancer properties.
- Physical Activity
A review that took place in the Stanford University carefully analyzed all the studies that were performed between the years 1976 and 2002. 16 out of the 22 studies in this review discussed how an active lifestyle decreased the risk of prostate cancer in men.
Moreover, in 9 out of these 16 studies, the risk reduction was found to be statistically significant, with the reduction of 10 to 30 percent on average.
The researchers are from the viewpoint that exercise can regulate the hormone levels, prevent obesity, and improve the immune functions which control the oxidative stress.
- Vitamin E
Vitamin E is thought to play an important role in the body. As per a study published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, the incidence of prostate cancer can be reduced up to 32 percent in people who receive 50 milligrams of vitamin E for up to eight years.
- Vitamin D
As per the researchers belonging to the Boston University School of Medicine, the vitamin D levels must be maintained in men of all ages. This is because vitamin D deficiency can increase the risk of prostate cancer and can also aggravate its progression.
Selenium has a number of benefits including its potential to enhance the immune system, increase the longevity, and reduce the likelihood of cancer.
A study conducted in the University of Arizona checked the effects of selenium supplements on the prostate cancer. The study concluded with a result that supplementation with 200 micrograms of selenium can reduce the incidence of prostate cancer by 67 percent.
Precautions with Prostate Health
In order to seek any alternative medicine to improve prostate health, it is important to consult your physician. Your doctor will guide you about the treatment with the help of the most potent therapies. Share your concerns about the side effects of a conventional treatment and express your desire to try natural treatments.
Some alternative therapies may prove to be dangerous if used in combination with medications. This makes it important to consult with a doctor before starting any herbal treatment as well.