Infections of the prostate, known collectively as prostatitis, often arise as a consequence of an uncontrolled urinary tract infection. Whatever the cause may be, prostatitis can be a painful condition that can develop into chronic prostatitis or prostatic abscess if left untreated. Natural remedies and common-sense measures can ease the symptoms of prostatitis and even help cure the condition. However, check with a medical professional before starting any self-treatment regimen.
In its review of alternative therapies, the Prostatitis Foundation’s website emphasizes the importance of making changes in what you eat and drink when you’re suffering from prostatitis or any urinary tract infection. Drink large amounts of water and other fluids to keep your urinary tract flushed. Cranberry juice has the ability to wash away bacteria that might otherwise cling to the wall of the bladder and allow the infection to spread from the bladder to the prostate or migrate from the prostate back to the bladder. At the first sign of infection, switch to a light diet that emphasizes whole grains, fresh fruits, steamed vegetables and herbal teas.
Flower Pollen Extract
As early as 1960, a Swedish researcher reported that flower pollen extract was effective in treating prostatitis, according to Frank Murray, author of “100 Super Supplements for a Longer Life.” Although the precise mechanism through which the pollen works has not been conclusively pinpointed, researchers believe it increases the body’s production of interferon and also stimulates the thymus gland, both of which play a key role in fighting off infection. In the intervening years since the original Swedish research on flower pollen extract, European and Japanese researchers have found that the extract also can successfully treat benign prostatic hyperplasia, or BPH, a non-cancerous enlargement of the prostate closely associated with the aging process. James Occhiogrosso, author of “Your Prostate, Your Libido, Your Life,” recommends 378mg daily, divided into three doses, of supplemental flower pollen extract, “standardized to contain 1.4 percent alpha amino acids and 0.08 percent phytosterols.” Consult your doctor before using this or any other herbal remedy.
Vitamin C and Zinc
Andrew W. Saul, author of “Fire Your Doctor! How to Be Independently Healthy,” reports that large doses of vitamin C appear to be at least as effective as antibiotics in treating prostate infections, both acute and chronic. He cites the work of Robert Cathcart, M.D., Frederick R. Klenner, M.D., and other physicians who used megadoses of the vitamin to cure infections. Saul recommends taking daily doses of C just short of levels that trigger loose stools. The dose, large enough to be measured in grams and not milligrams, gradually can be reduced as the prostate infection subsides.
Zinc levels drop dramatically during bouts of prostatitis, falling to one-tenth normal readings, according to Saul. He recommends increasing zinc intake by eating pumpkin seeds, shellfish and nutritional yeast or taking a daily zinc supplement of 50 to 100mg. Check with a medical professional before beginning any self-treatment regimen with vitamin C or zinc to see if these therapies are appropriate for you.