The prostate gland is a triangular shaped gland that surrounds the urethra and lies between the pubic bone and rectum, just right under the bladder. The prostate glad is responsible for secreting fluid with sperm.
If your prostate is swollen or enlarged (due to age), it acts as a clamp on the urethra. This is called having an enlarged prostate or Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH). Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia can make it hard or even impossible to urinate. BPH is just one form of prostate disease that can develop into life threatening conditions.
Prostate cancer is another risk that is affecting many men. Unfortunately, prostate cancer is increasing at an alarming rate. Currently, one in ten men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer. It is estimated that by year 2018, one in every four men will be diagnosed with this disease. Prostate cancer, if detected early, can be treated successfully. If prostate cancer is not detected early, and left untreated, it can spread to other parts of the body.
Prostate diseases are usually present in men over the age of 40, and the frequency of sufferers increases with age. The most common screening tests for determining prostate health are the digital rectal exam (DRE), and a blood test called a prostate-specific antigen (PSA). The digital rectal exam is a quick test that can be performed in less than ten minutes. This test is used to screen mostly for prostate disease, but is helpful in screening for other prostate diseases. During the digital rectal exam, the doctor will place one gloved (and lubricated) finger into the patient’s rectum. Next, the doctor will examine the prostate for any lumps or abnormalities.
The prostate-specific antigen test is a blood test that measures prostate-specific antigen, which is produced by the prostate gland. High levels of the prostate-specific antigen may be an early indicator of prostate cancer. High levels of PSA are also present in individuals with an enlarged prostate. A PSA below 2.5 (for those under 60), and 4 (for those over 60) is considered healthy.
Healthy living is a good way to maintain a healthy prostate. What you eat and drink will have an effect on prostate health. Following a healthy diet and healthy lifestyle will lower the risk of developing prostate problems later on in life. Eating foods that are rich in selenium like tuna, wheat germ, herring, seafood, shellfish, eggs, cashews, mushrooms, onions and kelp are all great for maintaining the health of your prostate.
Just as selenium-rich foods benefit the health of your prostate, there are also foods that can harm your prostate. For example, diary intake has been linked to prostate cancer. In fact, diary intake is the strongest dietary factor that contributes to the development of prostate cancer. Men who Prostate Protocol consume more diary products are among the highest deaths from prostate disease. Diary consumption and the development of prostate cancer are due to the hormone in milk called Insulin-like Growth Factor (IGF). A pint of milk a day or the equivalent in diary products will put you at risk for contracting prostate cancer.
Here are natural ways that you can maintain your prostate health:
Saw Palmetto Extract. Saw Palmetto berry extract (Serenoa repens) helps to inhibit the conversion of testosterone into dihydrotestoserone (DHT). DHT is a substance that contributes to the over-growth of prostate tissues. Taking Saw Palmetto extract can help with this if taken daily.
Soy. Including more soy in your diet is one way to maintain your prostate health. Soy restores the proper estrogen-to-testosterone ratio that becomes imbalanced in men over the age of 40. Increasing the amount of soy consumption in your diet positively affects the size of the prostate gland. Soy-rich foods include soymilk, tofu, roasted soy nuts and other soy products.
Zinc. 15 mg of zinc a day will help maintain a healthy prostate. Pumpkin seeds are an excellent source of zinc.
Supplements. A good multivitamin program combined with antioxidant supplements can help prevent damage to the prostate. It is a well-known fact that antioxidants are preventative in fighting free radicals that can cause damage to the prostate. Supplements like vitamins A, E and Lycopene can help contribute to the health of your prostate gland.