Men who live long enough have a very high chance of developing an enlarged prostate gland. An enlarged prostate, or benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), differs from prostate cancer and treatment will depend on symptoms. Some men with enlarged prostates don’t ever experience symptoms, but most men have mild symptoms. The management of these symptoms will depend on their severity, and this article aims to look at natural remedies that relieve symptoms or potentially shrink an enlarged prostate.
What Is An Enlarged Prostate?
The prostate gland wraps around the urethra, which is the tube out of which urine flows. Belonging to the male reproductive system, the prostate gland naturally gets bigger as men age. Several factors may cause a prostate to enlarge. Aging and changing cells in the testicles may play a roll in the gland’s growth. Men who have their testicles removed at a young age as a result of an accident or cancer, for example, do not develop BPH. Additionally, the prostate begins to shrink if older men who have BPH remove their testicles. Although BPH is non-cancerous, it does increase the risk for prostate cancer.
Eventually, an enlarged prostate can clamp down on the urethra and restrict the flow of urine from the bladder. This can lead to a variety of problems, including:
- Difficulty in voiding
- Frequent urination
- Urinary tract infections
- Urinary leakage
For men with enlarged prostates, the following natural remedies may help to relieve symptoms.
Change Your Bathroom Habits
If you experience bothersome urinary symptoms, it may be time to change your bathroom habits. As soon as you feel the urge to urinate, go to the restroom and empty your bladder each time. This will help reduce the number of trips you make to the restroom. To ease urination, experts recommend that you relax as much as possible beforehand. Anxiety can make it more difficult to urinate, so block out your symptoms and consider meditation to ease the flow of urine.
European stinging nettle can cause a sharp jolt of pain if you come in contact with the hairs on its leaves. Although this is the case, it doesn’t have that effect when brewed or cooked. In fact, stinging nettle may benefit men with BPH. Nettle root contains similar antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds that are in saw palmetto and pygeum. In fact, some herbal concoctions often combine saw palmetto with nettle root to reduce the size of the prostate.
Eat A Plant-Based Diet
According to several studies, it’s best for men with enlarged prostates to follow a plant-based diet. Decreasing the intake of animal-based foods, or eliminating them from the diet entirely, is the first line of defense for reducing the size of the prostate. It’s best to prioritize fresh fruits and vegetables because they exhibit potent antioxidant activity that reduces oxidative stress. They are also rich in fiber, anti-inflammatory properties, and other vitamins and minerals. It’s also beneficial to consume starch-resistant foods because they contain beneficial organisms that improve gut microbiome. Improving gut health ultimately enhances immune function, which may reduce inflammation in the prostate. BPH is an inflammatory process, so reducing the rate of inflammation can only benefit your health. Focus on lentils, green bananas, green beans, kidney beans, and other gut healthy foods.
Watch What You Drink And When
As you are well aware, the liquids you consume must eventually come out. Cutting down or monitoring what and when you drink can help cut down on urinary irritation. Researchers confirm that caffeine and alcohol encourage the kidneys to produce urine. That means you can expect more frequent trips to the bathroom when drinking caffeinated or alcoholic beverages. It’s best to avoid or moderate your nighttime intake of these beverages, as it may cut down how often you need to urinate. This may help improve sleep if you regularly wake up at night to empty the bladder. Additionally, limit the consumption of cranberry juice and wine, especially before you leave the house or go to bed.
This herb may be the most studied herb in regards to naturally reducing an enlarged prostate. This herbal remedy comes from the fruit of the palm tree, and several studies confirm that it may be effective at relieving BPH symptoms. Saw palmetto inhibits the production of dihydrotestosterone (DHT) and reduces the size of the prostate’s inner lining. The research on saw palmetto as an effective remedy for BPH is ongoing. Preliminary studies, however, find that the anti-inflammatory and hormone-blocking properties may help men with BPH.