The prostate is a gland located near the urethra, which is the tube from which urine flows. Its primary job is to add fluid that is able to protect and carry sperm into the uterus during intercourse.
The prostate gland grows during two different stages of life: it starts out small and doubles in size during adolescence, and then continues its growth after a man reaches the age of 25. It continues to grow throughout a man’s life, which often leads to too much growth—a condition known as benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). BPH symptoms can eventually affect urine flow by tightening around the urethra and causing frequent bathroom trips, leakage, difficulty urinating, urinary tract infections, and other prostate problems. In the worst case scenario, an unchecked prostate gland can lead to prostate enlargement, prostatitis, and potentially prostate cancer.
There are treatments available for enlarged prostate or BPH, but many men find they are most successful using natural remedies. If you’re interested in treating an enlarged prostate naturally, one or more of the following might help:
Saw palmetto is an herbal remedy for an enlarged prostate gland. It comes from the fruit of a palm tree and has been a natural remedy used to treat a variety of issues for hundreds of years. Most of these issues related to urinary symptoms.
In addition to anecdotal evidence, there have been a few scientific studies that suggest the advantages of using saw palmetto for BPH are legitimate. The herb potentially has anti-inflammatory or hormone-blocking properties. Saw palmetto is considered safe to use, but some people have a mild reaction that includes headaches and stomach upset.
Beta-sitosterol is a medicinal herbal remedy that mixes fats from different plants. There is research that shows beta-sitosterol is able to relieve urinary symptoms, especially helping with urine flow. So far, no significant side effects have been noted with use of beta-sitosterol, but there is no data concerning its long-term effects.
Pygeum comes from the bark of the African plum tree. It has a long history of being used to treat urinary problems in traditional medicine and is commonly used in Europe in modern times. There haven’t been many solid studies on it, but there is some evidence it helps with urine flow and the ability to empty the bladder. It’s considered safe, but some users have reported headaches and stomach upset, just like with saw palmetto.
Rye grass pollen extract is a mix of three grass pollens that include corn, rye, and timothy. According to at least one study, men using rye grass pollen saw improvement in their overnight symptoms of an enlarged prostate.
The stinging nettle is a plant that usually has unpleasant effects such as a rash when touched, but there is evidence it might help ease symptoms of an enlarged prostate. The hairs that are on the leaves cause a sharp, intense pain when touched, but it’s been an extremely popular traditional medicine remedy for years and is still commonly used throughout Europe today.
The stinging nettle is frequently combined with other treatments for an enlarged prostate. The side effects include upset stomach and skin irritation.
One of the most effective natural treatments for enlarged prostate includes physical activity. The stronger the pelvic floor the better symptoms are with the condition. Having a strong pelvic floor helps you improve your bladder and bowel control, have a more powerful orgasm and better overall sexual health, as well as feel better about your overall quality of life. There is also evidence to suggest that a strong pelvic floor speeds up recovery after prostate surgery.
In addition to focusing on the fitness of your pelvic floor muscles, overall fitness can also be an effective treatment for BPH. Yoga has been shown to be particularly beneficial and can be combined with Kegels to reap the greatest benefit.
Yoga stretches help you develop flexibility and greater muscle control and have a calming effect that can relieve tension in the pelvis. Just a few minutes each day trying yoga stretches can provide a number of significant benefits that extend beyond helping with an enlarged prostate.
Much the same as your diet affects all other areas of your health, what you eat has a direct effect on prostate health.
In general, it’s important to eat a well-balanced diet that includes plenty of whole foods, especially fruits and vegetables. One study showed that men who ate a lot of fruits and veggies, especially foods high in lycopene like tomatoes, and dark green leafy vegetables, has fewer problems with BPH and fewer symptoms. There was also evidence their diet prevented a problem with an enlarged prostate getting worse, even if they had an issue when they added healthy foods to their diet.
Most researchers and medical professionals agree adding one single food to your diet in an effort to treat enlarged prostate probably won’t do much good, so there’s no need to run out and buy a lifetime supply of ketchup. What is actually beneficial is eating a combination of healthy foods that include those high in lycopene, and incorporate other healthy activities into your life, such as exercise.
The greatest benefits seem to take place when a man uses a comprehensive natural approach to improving prostate healthy by eating a healthy diet at least 80 percent of the time, getting at least 30 minutes a day of physical activity, practicing Kegel exercises, and incorporate one or more of the natural herbal remedies into their daily life.
Keep in mind that just because something is natural does automatically make it safe. Of course, eating healthy foods and exercising shouldn’t be a problem for most people, but you’ll want to consult with your doctor before taking any herbal remedy or making any drastic changes to your diet and lifestyle.
It’s important to do your research and know what side effects are normal and which you need to be concerned about. It’s also important to realize that, even something that’s considered totally safe, can interfere with other medications you’re taking, rendering them less effective or causing an unanticipated side effect. Never use an herbal remedy before first speaking to your doctor.