How Do You Ensure Your Prostate Is Healthy?
Prostate health becomes a growing concern with age for men. But there are ways to deter a future battle, such as an awareness of your dietary options and nutritional support, which promote an optimal prostate function. The prostate gland secretes fluid which combines with sperm to create semen – the gland is found in the urethra, the tube which takes urine out of the bladder. But with age, a common problem is that the gland becomes enlarged, and if it grows too much it can stem the flow of urine from the urethra. There are a number of symptoms for this condition such as frequently needing the toilet, a weak urine stream and a constant needing to go to the toilet. The prostate is almost more likely to become infected which can lead to pain in the pelvic area, or pain when urinating. Men with prostate problems may also have low testosterone levels which could lead to depression, vascular disease and fatigue. This can be tested with a blood test though, so speak to your GP about this.
Prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer amongst men. It’s a very serious diagnosis, though the aggressiveness of the cancer will vary among patients. It’s usually diagnosed in a routine prostate exam or through a prostate-specific antigen blood test. The symptoms are very similar to those with prostate enlargement, such as needing to urinate more often. There are various risk factors for prostate cancer, such as increasing age, family history and race. However, not every man who suffers from prostate enlargement will have prostate cancer, though the symptoms many overlap. If you’re suffering from symptoms you think may be a concern, you should speak to your GP as soon as possible. There is good news though – food can benefit your prostate, and if you choose wisely you can help to lower your risk of developing problems. For example, omega-3 fatty acids and a diet rich in fruit and vegetables are vital as part of a healthy daily diet. Fatty fish such as salmon or tuna, or a fish oil supplement, should dominate your intake. You should limit your intake of saturated fats, as with any healthy diet, as well as red meats and dairy. Soy is great for your diet and should be part of your daily nutrition – you can add this by eating tempeh, soy beans and tofu to your diet, such as in salads or stir fries.
A lot of nutrients can help with the frequent urination that is associated with prostate enlargement. These include zinc, saw palmetto, pygeum, stinging nettle, beta-sitosterol, lycopene, selenium and vitamin E. You should add pomegranate juice to your diet, as well as green tea as these have qualities and nutrients that are great for your health overall, as well as for your prostate. African Americans and those with a history of prostate conditions in the family should begin their screening at 40. If you don’t fall into either of these categories, however, you can begin your annual screening at the age of 50. Experts advise to get a check-up every year, but there isn’t actually any evidence to suggest that routine screening helps – however, it also does no harm. If you’re concerned about your health in any way, or have a family history of prostate problems, you should speak to your GP as soon as possible as they can run tests to determine if there is a problem.
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