Benign prostatic hyperplasia, or BPH, is a common health complaint among middle-aged men. The Family Doctor website states that as you get older, your prostate gland becomes enlarged, which can impair urinary flow through your urethra. The condition is called benign because it is not caused by cancer or infection. Meet with your doctor to discuss all aspects of your care before taking dietary supplements to help treat your BPH and improve your urinary flow.
Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia
According to the National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse, your prostate gland grows throughout much of your life, although the enlargement of this important gland usually does not cause problems until you reach middle age. More than 50 percent of men in their 60s exhibit some signs and symptoms of BPH. Common signs and symptoms of BPH include decreased urine velocity, urinary urgency and dribbling and increased frequency of nighttime urination. Bladder infections, kidney stones and incontinence are some of the most common complications associated with this condition.
Useful Dietary Supplements
Many dietary supplements have been used to treat BPH. Russell B. Marz, a naturopathic physician, clinical nutrition expert and author of "Medical Nutrition From Marz," states that vitamins, minerals, amino acids and herbs may all help treat this condition. Useful dietary supplements for BPH, Marz states, include zinc picolinate, flax oil, amino acids such as glycine, glutamic acid and alanine, selenium, vitamin E, quercetin, saw palmetto and African pygeum. Other lifestyle factors, especially diet, are important in the treatment of BPH.
Saw palmetto is one of the most popular dietary supplements in treating BPH. Saw palmetto, the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine notes, may be helpful for numerous conditions, including BPH, longstanding pelvic pain, bladder conditions, low libido, hair loss, prostate cancer and hormonal imbalance. Saw palmetto has anti-inflammatory, diuretic, antispasmodic and decongestant action. The fruit of the saw palmetto plant -- a small palm that grows throughout the southeastern United States -- is used to make dietary supplements.
If you are experiencing difficulties with urination, consider visiting your family doctor for a thorough evaluation and treatment plan. A qualified health care professional can offer you treatment alternatives and provide you with information about alternative therapies, including dietary supplementation. Some dietary supplements contain active constituents that may cause unwanted side effects, especially if you are pregnant or have other medical conditions. When communicating with your doctor, provide as much information about your health status as possible.
- Family Doctor: Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia
- National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse: Prostate Enlargement
- "Medical Nutrition From Marz;" Russell B. Marz, N.D.; 1999
- National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Saw Palmetto