Both my father and grandfather were diagnosed with prostate cancer in their 70s.
Q. Dear Terry, “Both my father and grandfather were diagnosed with prostate cancer in their 70s. I’m still in my 50s, but I would like to start taking steps now to prevent a prostate cancer diagnosis. My PSA levels are normal so I’m looking for some ingredients to help maintain my prostate health.” — Roy B., Indianapolis, IN
A. Dear Roy, When it comes to prostate issues, there are many natural medicines that can help prevent or delay the onset of chronic conditions like prostate cancer.
I think you could benefit greatly from the addition of curcumin. What I find most fascinating about curcumin is that it can stop the multitude of conditions that lead to prostate diseases: inflammation, oxidation, DNA damage, and the cell-signaling that promotes tumor formation and metastasis. Of course, not all curcumin is created equal, and the type of curcumin you use makes a difference. I recommend a clinically studied curcumin that is blended with turmeric essential oil for better absorption, plus enhanced benefits from the turmerones in the extract.
Another powerful ingredient in the fight against prostate cancer is pomegranate. Scientific studies have shown that pomegranate juice can significantly decrease PSA levels (often used as a marker of prostate cancer). Many pomegranate extracts lack one of the most beneficial compounds, omega-5 fatty acid, also called punicic acid, which is found in the seed oil. Current research finds that omega-5 from pomegranate inhibits PSA and stops the growth of blood vessels that feed tumors. I would look for a pomegranate extract that contains both seed and pulp oil for more enhanced benefits.
Scientific studies on grape seed extract show that it can also be very useful for prostate disease prevention by stopping the inflammatory pathways that set them up to become cancerous. Like any nutrient, the key compounds need to be absorbed before you’ll see any difference. I recommend a French grape seed extract that is tannin-free and provides only low-molecular weight oligomeric proanthocyanidins (OPCs). They absorb best so you actually get the prostate protection you need.
Many people are familiar with milk thistle for liver health; one of the key compounds – silybin – also has amazing abilities as a powerful medicine for the prostate.
Lastly, vitamin D3 is crucial for optimal health, especially for the prostate. In a Harvard Medical School clinical study, 14 percent of the participants (all of European descent) had genes associated with less efficient use of vitamin D, and as a result were more susceptible to prostate cancer. In fact, the combination of low vitamin D levels and a slight genetic difference associated with poorer use of vitamin D meant they were more than twice as likely (2.5 times) to develop aggressive prostate cancer.
I would take all of these ingredients once or twice per day.
Terry . . . Naturally