Benign prostatic hyperplasia, also called benign prostatic hypertrophy or just, BPH, occurs in men 45 years of age or older. 50% of all men in the US have BPH to some degree. BPH creates an enlarged and/or inflamed prostate gland and it will make urination difficult.
It is the prostate gland that produces the substances that enhance and protect the functions of the sperm cells and the whole genitourinary system against disease and infection.
In the U.S. 80% of all men by the age of 70 will experience BPH. Traditional medical doctors consider this to be a normal occurrence of aging, an idea that is wildly disputed by natural practitioners.
The early signs of BPH are a need to urinate more often and especially at night. As the condition becomes more advanced it will become more difficult, to begin and to end urination. Some other symptoms include a burning sensation while urinating, dribbling and the feeling that the bladder is never really empty.
In some cases, urinary incontinence can ensue, prostate, bladder or kidney infections can also happen. BPH can become so severe in some cases that it becomes impossible to urinate and can even lead to kidney failure.
Note: You will want to seek immediate medical attention if you experience, blood in the urine, bone pain and/or unexplained weight loss.
It is an abnormal swelling or overgrowth of the prostate tissue that is the cause of BPH. Eventually it will block the opening of the bladder or urethra. And It is the changes in the hormone levels that cause the prostate tissue overgrowth, and more specifically it is a decrease in the testosterone and an increase in DHT, dihydrotestosterone. Dihydrotestosterone is a form of testosterone that is more active and associated with an increased risk of prostate cancer and BPH. Holistic practitioners view BPH as prostate cancer waiting to happen.
It is the hormone prolactin, which is produced by the pituitary gland and that is the responsible party for the increase in DHT. It is the trigger that begins the activity of the enzyme to convert the testosterone into DHT. So, if prolactin is being secreted chronically, it causes an over production and an excessive amount that can play a most significant role in the development and onset of BPH.
The production of prolactin increases during times of high emotional stress and alcohol, especially beer. And a case of chronic constipation can also add to and magnify the symptoms.
Other influences that can exacerbate or cause BPH include nutritional deficiencies, congestion in the lymphatic system, and especially in the lymph nodes around the prostate, and environmental toxins.
The best way to deal with BPH is through prevention. This of course will include a yearly physical that includes both a blood test to determine the prostate specific antigen score (PSA), and a digital rectal exam. The PSA should mainly be done for men over 40. Other tests that are useful are ultrasound, blood tests to determine your immune status, and a urinalysis. And if you are over 40 also consider hormone testing.
Other pre-emptive measures would be a healthy diet that is as organic and natural as possible, nutritional supplementation and exercise at least 3 times per week. And, to help avoid infection among other things, use a condom during sex.
To help relieve some of the symptoms Aromatherapy has been effective. These essential oils can help: bergamot, sandalwood, tea tree oil and chamomile.
The Ayurvedic herb Ashwagandha can also help reduce the symptoms.
Foods to avoid are those low in fiber and high in unhealthy saturated fats. In addition to that avoid caffeine, sugars and sugar products, alcohol, simple carbohydrates, partially hydrogenated and hydrogenated oils and fats, shortening, margarine and all commercial and processed “junk food”.
The diet you will want is one that is made up of organic whole foods, plenty of raw, fresh vegetables and fruits, whole grains, oats, seeds and nuts, and pumpkin and sunflower seeds are especially good for this. Lessen your red meat intake and be sure it too is organic and/or natural, free-range poultry and only wild-caught fish. Drink a lot of pure, filtered water. Do not drink tap water it contains heavy metals and pesticide residues that can settle in the prostate gland. Also avoid overly spicy foods.
Crab Apple and Pine are both useful flower essences for prostate issues.
Herbs that are helpful with the treatment of and prevention of BPH include Pygeum africanum, saw palmetto and nettle root. Because of its ability to improve hormone balance and detoxify the liver milk thistle can be quite effective.
Some homeopathic remedies include thuja, apis mellifica, pulstilla, causticum, lycopodium, chiaphilla, clematis and umbellate.
Hydrotherapy can also help to relieve the symptoms, this is the application of cold and hot temperatures of water, ice, and steam. This would include sitz baths, full body immersion, saunas and steam baths and colonic irrigations. Check with your natural health practitioner for more information on this type of treatment.
Juice that will help is a combination of red cabbage, lettuce and celery juice. Drink 8 ounces twice a day.
And engaging in sex 2 to 4 times per week with your partner will also help. Sex reduces the buildup of pressure on the prostate – if no partner masturbation will achieve the same result.
NHRT, Natural Hormone Replacement Therapy can resolve, sometimes quickly, prostate problems related to hormone imbalances or deficiencies. Testosterone is commonly used for this purpose and also benefits the sexual desire and protects against impotence.
NHRT would need to be taken under the supervision of a trained physician. Holistic practitioners, many of them, recommend testosterone skin cream as it seems the safest approach and the one least likely to cause side affects.
Note: If you decide to explore testosterone replacement therapy, make sure that your doctor regularly monitors the PSA levels to protect against BPH and prostate cancer. Also get yourself screened for liver toxicity as well as elevated red blood cell counts, high blood pressure, gynecomastia (abnormal mammary glands) and testicle shrinkage during the course of treatment.
And for men receiving this therapy it is advised to supplement with the herb saw palmetto, it helps to be sure the testosterone doesn’t convert into DHT, which can lead to other health issues in addition to prostate cancer.
Supplements that are good for the prevention and treatment of BPH include: B-complex vitamins, E, C, B3, magnesium, zinc and manganese. Also the amino acid L-arginine, alpha-lipoic and a trace mineral formula, evening primrose oil, omega-3 oils and eicosapentaenoic acid. In addition to that garlic capsules, hydrochloric acid, acidophilus, and to help protect against inflammation use Wobenzyme. And some more helpful nutrents are glutamic acid beta-sitosterol, alanine and glutamic acid.
Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia – What To Do by Michele N Michaels