Prostate problems are NOT an inevitable sign of aging.
Benign Prostate Hyperplasia (BPH) is on the rise, with half of all men experiencing symptoms by age 60. And even though statistics show that 9 out of 10 men in their eighties develop prostate inflammation, that doesn’t mean it’s normal. The truth is you can preserve your prostate health – so you’re not getting up several times each night to urinate and your stream hasn’t slowed to a trickle.
There’s so much more you can do to protect the health of your prostate than just getting an annual blood test. Optimize your hormone levels, get regular aerobic exercise, eat a healthy low glycemic diet free of processed foods and sugars, practice safe sex, and take nutrients that support the health of your prostate. Today I want to focus on research-backed nutrients you can take to protect your prostate health, and I’m giving you my top 5 favorites.
What Causes BPH?
This gradual prostate enlargement is part of the low testosterone/high estrogen driven “andropause” syndrome in men. This “male menopause” is caused by an increased conversion of testosterone to estrogen and dihydrotestosterone (DHT), which stimulates the overproduction of prostate cells that leads to enlargement. These hormone changes also contribute to a decline in muscle mass, irritability and moodiness, anxiety, low energy, low sex drive and function issues, hair loss, sluggish metabolism, excess belly and chest fat, memory problems, and increased risk of heart disease and diabetes.
Once BPH sets in, the prostate becomes enlarged and puts pressure on the urethra, making it difficult to empty the bladder. This leads to discomfort and infection, making it painful to urinate and causing frequent nighttime waking for bathroom trips. Aside from the urinary symptoms, many men also experience erectile dysfunction from the enlarged prostate.
Not only are you prone to the typical bacterial bladder infections with BPH, but you are also at increased risk for fungal growth, which can be a root cause of BPH. I know there’s nothing more refreshing than a cold beer on a hot summer day, but all that beer not only adds to your belly fat and hormone issues, but also encourages fungal overgrowth and sets the stage for prostate issues. You are also at risk for BPH if you are already experiencing the high estrogen and DHT with low testosterone hormone changes, or have advanced age, nutrient deficiencies, toxin overload, chronic stress, heavy metal exposure, or estrogen mimics in your foods and plastic products.
Do Herbs Work to Improve Prostate Health?
Remedies for the urinary urgency caused by BPH have been around for thousands of years – before we even knew the function of the prostate. Traditional Chinese and Native American herbalists are some of the most well respected sources for herbal BPH wisdom. Today, close to 3 dozen plant compounds are used worldwide for BPH symptoms, with European countries like Germany and France making them the first line of treatment for mild to moderate symptoms. My top 5 nutrients combine the ancient herbal healing wisdom of traditional cultures with the modern research-backed approaches used in other nations.
This anti-inflammatory plant is commonly used to help improve prostate health, reduce rapid cell growth in the prostate, balance hormone levels, and prevent hair loss in men. According to the New England Journal of Medicine, more than 2 million men currently take saw palmetto for the urinary symptoms and related inflammation of BPH. Several studies have been done that show 160 milligrams of saw palmetto twice daily dramatically improved lower urinary tract symptoms and increased urine flow. They also reported overall better quality of life.
If you look at the research behind saw palmetto, you’ll see the results are mixed – some studies say it’s highly effective while others say it has no effect at all. One reason for this may be the processing and standardization of the products used. Saw palmetto products don’t have a consistent amount of active compounds measured across different products, which means they aren’t standardized. The extraction methods also vary between studies, which contributes to the standardization issue.
My advice with any herbal product like this is to find a trusted source – like UNI KEY Health’s Prostate Formula – and stick with it. Read the reviews from other customers, and talk to people who take it and hear what their success has been with it. Take it for at least 90 days for maximum effect.
One of the key compounds in saw palmetto is a plant sterol called beta sitosterol. Also found in many fruits, vegetables, seeds, nuts, and other plants, beta sitosterol is closely related to your own cholesterol and in large amounts can help lower cholesterol levels by blocking the absorption of it. It also modulates the immune system. What makes it different from your cholesterol is that it can’t be converted into testosterone or DHT. In studies it has been shown to help relieve urinary BPH symptoms.
Once again, because the plant sources for beta sitosterol can very widely, it’s important to choose a brand you can trust, like UNI KEY Health. The sources used in other prostate supplements can be everything from soybeans to the African wild potato, and concentrations can be dramatically different in seemingly similar products. I recommend 75 milligrams twice daily.
The pygeum herb comes to us from Africa, where it has a long history of being used for urinary and fertility issues, especially in men. Several studies have been done that show its impressive benefits with prostate enlargement and acts as a natural diuretic. Participants in 18 different studies all reported decreased urination at night with a stronger urine flow during the day. I recommend taking 50 milligrams twice daily for at least a 90-day trial.
Zinc is one of the most important minerals for the prostate. Healthy, normal prostate tissue accumulates the highest levels of zinc in the entire body. Your prostate uses it to make prostatic fluid and it plays an important role in its development and functioning.
Studies consistently show that the zinc levels in cancerous prostate tissue are up to 75% lower than healthy prostate tissue. Zinc also has anti-bacterial activity in the prostate, and reduces the symptoms of BPH, shrinks an enlarged prostate, and restores healthy hormone balance, fertility markers, and sexual function. I recommend supplementing 50 milligrams per day.
Prostate Glandular Extract
Historically, hunters didn’t let any part of an animal go to waste. They didn’t just eat the meat; they stewed the bones and ate the organ meats as well. Today, we focus mainly on the meats and have recently added savory bone broths and roasted marrow as a delicacy, but many of us can’t wrap our heads around eating many of the organs our ancestors enjoyed.
There is a simple concept hidden in these practices that still holds true today – when you eat the organs of a healthy animal, concentrated within it are the building blocks for the health of that same organ in your body. This is why I recommend taking a bovine prostate glandular extract as part of your supplement regimen. UNI KEY Health’s Prostate Formula uses only New Zealand sourced grass-fed bovine prostate glandular extract that’s been tested and found free of diseases, growth hormones, antibiotics, and environmental pollutants. I wouldn’t trust any other!
Hope and Healing for Parkinson’s – Episode 143: Martha Carlin
Parkinson's disease is the fasting growing neurological condition in the country today. So, when Martha Carlin found out that her husband was diagnosed with this progressive illness, she went into action immediately. She transitioned from her thriving career as a systems expert to become a Citizen Scientist and explore the science connecting the microbiome to the brain in hopes of finding a cure for her husband. Martha has now emerged as a leading authority in the realm of the human biome. At the helm of her company, The BioCollective, she now offers state of the art research to find underlying causes of this devastating diagnosis and has developed a proprietary formulation called Sugar Shift, which targets the way the body metabolizes sugars and re-establishes harmony to the gut and brain connection. As Martha shares in the podcast, this has had a profound and positive effect upon her husband’s condition! Join Ann Louise and Martha Carlin in this illuminating conversation as they explore the groundbreaking work that aims to revolutionize our understanding of human health and the connections from the soil to the food to our guts and our brains. For more information check out: www.thebiocollective.com.
Prostate enlargement is such a common problem. All the men in my life over 50 yrs have experienced some amount of this. Looks like an interesting combination of ingredients. I’m going to have my husband try it.