Why is it important to take care of the Prostate Gland?
The male prostate gland is found below the bladder and in front of the rectum. One reason why it is important to keep it healthy is because it has an effect on urinary flow.
The prostate wraps around the tube that transports urine out from the bladder and that is why a healthy prostate is important for the flow of urine. The prostate's main function is to produce the fluid that nourishes and is involved with transporting sperm. The objective is to keep the prostate healthy by doing the following:
- Drink at least 8 glasses of water daily, especially in the heat and after exercise.
- Manage your weight – Being overweight has been associated with prostate problems.
- Exercise regularly increasing blood flow
- Eat a balanced diet, but increase vegetables, especially those dark in pigment including green, leafy vegetables. Consume tomatoes, rich in lycopene which has demonstrated to help the prostate gland.
- Manage your stress levels since it can have a negative effect on hormonal balance.
- If you smoke, Stop. The carbon monoxide found in tobacco can attach to red blood cells effecting prostate health and other body parts.
The nutrients below have demonstrated to be helpful to the prostate gland:
Vitamin B-6 (as pyridoxine HCl)
Vitamin B6 is used by the body in metabolizing amino acids and is involved in manufacturing brain neurotransmitters. It has also been shown to be beneficial to the prostate gland cells. It can be found in foods such as salmon, chickpeas and potatoes, but also in dietary supplements.
Folic acid is a B vitamin used in amino acid metabolism, but also to form red and white blood cells. Observational research shows that folic acid from the diet may benefit prostate health. It is found in leafy green vegetables, beans and nuts and also in dietary supplements.
Vitamin E (as d-alpha tocopheryl)
Vitamin E is a fat soluble vitamin with a number of tocopherols with antioxidant properties that help to protect against oxidative cell membrane damage. Rich sources are found in vegetable oils, sweet potatoes, whole grains and leafy green vegetables.
Zinc is an essential mineral to support the immune system It is needed for cell growth and DNA repair. Zinc is considered valuable to the prostate gland and it is interesting to note that there is a large amount present in prostate tissue. It is found in meat and nuts, chickpeas and beans, as well as supplements.
Copper is an essential mineral for maintaining the immune system, but is also needed for connective tissue, blood vessels, the brain and to make energy. It is important when taking zinc so it does not get depleted.
Selenium is an essential mineral that provides important antioxidant protection both alone and as a cofactor for the enzyme glutathione peroxidase. It helps to create glutathione, which is one of the most important antioxidants in the body. It has been shown that having higher levels in the body is helpful to the prostate. Good sources are from whole grains and dairy products, including milk and yogurt.
Boron is a trace element and is believed to come from the Persian word, “burah.” It is found in foods such as fruit, tubers, and legumes, but also dietary supplements. It is essential for strong bones and supports the building of muscles and may influence hormone levels. It may help the prostate gland.
Supporting amino acids
Large doses of the trio L alanine, L glutamic acid and L glycine have been shown to be helpful to the prostate gland.
L Alanine is a non-essential amino acid and is used to make proteins. It is used for muscles, the immune system and also the central nervous system. It is found in poultry, meat, eggs, fish, and dairy products.
L Glutamic acid is an amino acid that is used to form proteins. It is used to protect the body against oxidative damage. It is found occurring in fish, chicken, spinach, dairy, cabbage and tofu.
L Glycine is an amino acid that is naturally found in connective tissue, the skin, tendons, ligaments and cartilage. It is found in foods such as eggs, chicken, meat, fish, dairy, cereals and beans.
Saw Palmetto Berry
The saw palmetto extract originates from a small creeping palm found in North America. It has been used for decades in Europe to support men’s health. There is both animal and human studies that suggest Saw Palmetto is beneficial for prostate health.
Pumpkin Seed extract (cucurbita pepo)
Pumpkin is a wonderful fruit, which is grown in Africa and Asia, but found in the United States and in Europe. Pumpkin seeds are a favorite seasonal snack, but has also been shown to have health benefits.
Pygeum bark (Pygeum africanum)
Pygeum is an herbal extract that is standardized to its actives called sterols. It sometimes is called the African Plum Tree found in southern Africa. Traditionally, it has been ground up and used for genito-urinary health, which includes the prostate gland.
Stinging Nettles extract (Urtica doica root)
Nettles is a weed that has been used traditionally for different health benefits including the prostate and has been popularly used in Germany and found in a supplement form.
Beta Sitosterol (from phytosterol complex)
β-sitosterol is one of several phytosterols from plants with chemical structures that are similar to that of cholesterol. It has been associated with bringing support to the prostate gland. It is found in foods such as corn oil, wheat germ, rice bran, soybeans, and peanuts and is available as a dietary supplement.
Lycopene is a bioactive carotenoid known for its antioxidant properties and has been used in many clinical studies for prostate health. There is a rich source found in tomato products, but can also be found in supplement form.
Quercetin is a natural plant flavonol, which is from the family of polyphenols. It is found in vegetables, fruits, seeds and grains. They are believed to be supportive to prostate cells.
If you have a health condition and or take medication, it’s always best to check with your healthcare provider prior to taking supplements.