You Can Protect Yourself
Every man runs the risk of developing prostate problems. Enlargement of the prostate, or “benign prostate hyperplasia” (BPH), is common in men over 40. Most men will experience BPH symptoms, and the likelihood of BPH increases with age. An even greater concern is prostate cancer, which is now the second most common cancer among men. Fortunately, there are herbs and plants available to maintain or improve prostate health. Two of the most effective of these natural protectors are saw palmetto and ginger.
Saw Palmetto (Serenoa repens)
Saw palmetto is an herbal extract obtained from the purple berries the palm. It grows in the southeastern United States. The berries served as food and medicine for Native Americans in that region. Western medicine first documented saw palmetto when Dr. J.B. Read, a Georgia physician, wrote about the plant’s many uses in the April 1879 issue of American Journal of Pharmacy.
Today, natural health practitioners recommend saw palmetto for a range of ailments, and it is a well known option for men with benign prostate hyperplasia symptoms, which include:
Frequent urination, especially at night
Difficulty starting and maintaining a urine stream
A feeling that the bladder is not completely empty after urination
Saw palmetto is thought to influence the body’s testosterone levels, in addition to reducing levels of an enzyme responsible for prostate cell growth. It also seems to act as an anti-inflammatory on the prostate.
Ginger (Zingiber officinale)
Ginger is the root of the plant Zingiber officinale, which has been used as food, medicine, and spice by indigenous peoples of southeastern Asia and China for thousands of years. In 2007, an Indian study found that substances in ginger can assist in killing prostate cancer cells. Other substances in ginger have been found to suppress the spread of cancer, and promote immune defenses against it.
Ginger also contains the chemical 6-gingerol, which some researchers believe reduces prostate inflammation and helps in preventing and slowing the spread of prostate cancer.
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