TIPS TO A HEALTHY PROSTATE
September 30, 2019
All men have a prostate. But unlike fine wine, for many men it does not improve with age.
What is the prostate and what does it do? Okay, this is going to get pretty scientific and graphic but it is what it is.
The prostate is a gland that produces the fluid that carries sperm during ejaculation. This gland weighs about 1 ounce and is the size of an apricot. It sits just in front of the rectum and below the bladder. The prostate contracts during ejaculation and squirts its fluid into the urethra. The milky fluid produced by the prostate — prostatic fluid — makes up around 30 percent of the total fluid ejaculated (the rest is sperm and fluid from the seminal vesicles). Prostatic fluid protects sperm, helping them live longer and be more mobile. It contains a number of ingredients, including enzymes, zinc, and citric acid. One of these enzymes is PSA (prostate-specific antigen) which aids in the success of sperm by liquefying semen that has thickened after ejaculation. To function properly, the prostate needs androgens (male hormones), such as testosterone and dihydrotestosterone (DHT).
So yea, small but mighty!
AND WHAT COULD POSSIBLY GO WRONG?
Now comes the scary part. Unfortunately, prostate problems can affect both urination and sexual function. And as men age some of these problems become pretty darn common.
The prostate is prone to three conditions:
Infection or inflammation of the prostate. Prostatitis can cause burning or painful urination, the urgent need to urinate, trouble urinating, difficult or painful ejaculation, and pain in the area between the scrotum and rectum (known as the perineum) or in the lower back.
BENIGN PROSTATIC HYPERPLASIA:
Aging-related enlargement of the prostate gland. Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) can make the prostate compress the urethra and slow or even stop the flow of urine, in much the same way that bending a garden hose chokes off the flow of water. BPH affects about three-quarters of men over age 60.
The growth of cancerous cells inside the prostate, which may break out of the gland and affect other parts of the body. In the United States, about 1 man in 7 will be diagnosed with prostate cancer during his lifetime. It occurs mainly in older men.
Wow, sorry for the medical jargon but it’s best to know what you are up against so you can move on to doing what you can to keep the prostate healthy and hopefully avoid the above unpleasant conditions as you age.
Always see your doctor and follow his advice if you think you have one of the above conditions. Doctor knows best! Please know that the information below is not to be construed as a treatment for any of the above possible prostate conditions but may help keep your little guy healthy.
AND YOU THOUGHT BIGGER WAS BETTER
Not when it comes to the prostate.
If we focus on BHP (enlarged prostate) for a moment, since it is by far the most prevalent of the three conditions mentioned above, we read that 75% of men over age 60 may get BPH. That’s not very encouraging!
So what can we do to keep this little guy healthy?
LET’S START WITH DIET. YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT!
Certain foods are known to have an impact on prostate health because of their effect on testosterone and other important hormones. In the prostate gland, testosterone is converted to another hormone called dihydrotestosterone (DHT). High levels of DHT cause the cells in the prostate to enlarge. As with most inflammatory conditions, a diet with high levels of meat and dairy products and not enough vegetables, can increase the risk of diseases like BHP.
But a diet rich in fruits, vegetables and healthy fats is thought to protect the prostate — foods like salmon, tomatoes, berries, broccoli, nuts, citrus, onions and garlic. And on the opposite end, foods like red meats, dairy, alcohol, a high salt intake should be avoided. Wow, it seems all the fun foods are out.
There are also other things you can do besides following a healthy diet to protect your prostate: watch your weight, be more sexually active, stop smoking, and beginning at 55 years of age get screened for prostate cancer.
It is also a good idea to supplement your diet with clinically-studied ingredients like beta-sitosterols, saw palmetto, pygeum and rye grass. There is some good research on these four.
Also check out our Mdrive Classic, a men’s health supplement that contains beta-sitosterols. In a clinical study, participants with BHP using beta-sitosterols over a six-month period had a better urine flow (this means they were able to empty their bladders so they didn’t feel like they still had to go). And in a follow-up trial, 18-months later, the benefits were still working.
So yes, all is not lost. There are things you can do to keep your prostate healthy and happy.
DID YOU KNOW, SEPTEMBER IS NATIONAL PROSTATE HEALTH MONTH
Prostate Health Month (September) provides an opportunity to create awareness around the health issues that are associated with a man’s prostate: BPH, prostatitis, and prostate cancer. You can visit their website for resources and additional information about prostate health.
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