Prostate Cancer: prevention

Attention, all guys! Prostate cancer is on the rise, and has been found in 60% of 60 year old men at autopsy.  Any men at risk for prostate cancer, men with diagnosed prostate cancer, men with elevated PSA following surgery or radiation, or those men simply wishing to safeguard against developing prostate cancer  - you can arm yourselves with these Two Super-Protectors:

Super-Protector #1: Green Tea

In China, tea is more than a beverage. It is a precious substance, exquisite, medicinal, even spiritual. Tea cultivation and tea drinking have a long and rich history. The art of drinking tea is also the art of longevity, of good companionship, and of heightened awareness.

Needless to add, tea drinking, done in the proper ways, enhances mind-body health. Besides it is delicious, fun and engrossing. Personally, I drink tea everyday, many times a day.

Tea drinking is also a kind of health insurance and preventive medicine. Teas contain certain phytochemicals that protect us against disease. For example, the catechins in tea will break up fats from food such as excess triglycerides or ldl cholesterol: you can shed excess pounds and clean up your arteries by regular consumption of select Chinese teas. Certainly, one of  the best medicines for weight loss and arterial health is aged Chinese Green Pu-erh tea.

Green tea also protects us against cancers such as breast cancer and prostate cancer. A recent trial published in June 2009 in the Cancer Prevention Research journal, concluded that drinking green tea has a potent inhibitory effect on a biochemical pathway involved in prostate tumor growth. The researchers used a capsule form of extracts from green tea called Polyphenol E. These extracts comprised catechins and polyphenols from the leaf.  The patients enrolled in the study consumed four capsules per day of the green tea extract, equivalent to 12 cups of tea, until the day before surgery. The average supplementation period was 34.5 days. The results revealed significant reductions in serum levels of HGF, VEGF and PSA after treatment, with some patients demonstrating reductions in levels of greater than 30 percent. The researchers concluded that these findings suggest a potential role for the green tea extract in the treatment or prevention of prostate cancer.

Contrary to what people say about green tea, it actually as a higher caffeine content than black tea. It is also very cool in thermal energy, and can cause stomach upset or intense hunger when drunk to excess. However, research such as the one referred to indicate unequivocally that drinking high quality green tea (or taking extracts) can protect us from prostate and probably many other cancers. It can also reduce plaque in the arteries and help us shed excess weight. So drink up and enjoy your tea. It is a very inexpensive and effective form of health insurance!

Super-Protector #2: Pomegranates

A study by the National Cancer Institute on the ability of pomegranate juice to keep PSA levels low, and therefore to prevent prostate cancer recurrence, concluded that,
“In a phase II trial we conducted, daily consumption of pomegranate juice resulted in a significant lengthening of PSA doubling time and disease stabilization,” says Dr. Patrick, the study director.

Currently, there is no standard treatment for men who have recurrent prostate cancer detected by an increase in PSA level only. Consequently, doctors want to develop treatments that can slow down or reverse increases in PSA without causing serious side effects.

In this trial, researchers looked at the potential of pomegranate juice to slow or reverse increasing PSA levels in men who have undergone treatment for localized prostate cancer.

Another simple, low cost food for preserving the health of the prostate is pumpkin seed.  Probably, other antioxidant rich berries will also be very helpful. From an energetic point of view, a sedentary lifestyle will also contribute towards prostate problems, so various forms of exercise, especially inversion poses in yoga, can be very beneficial as preventive medicine. In traditional Chinese medical theory, there is a concept of “dead sperm”. This means that sperm, or male sexual energy (including the lubricating fluids produced by the prostate) can become stagnant, like water in a pond, giving rise to unhealthy conditions. This stagnant blood in the lower abdomen and perineum may provide a fertile environment for the proliferation of XMRV, the sexually transmitted virus associated with prostate cancers.

Summary

In summary, drinking good green tea (or taking polyphenol extracts), eating pumpkin seeds and pomegranate (or pomegranate juice), practicing safe sex, and exercising in such a way as to encourage flexibility and  movement of vascular blood in the pelvic region will all help to reduce the risk of developing prostate cancer, keeping PSA levels down, and preventing return of prostate cancer for those men who have had surgery and radiotherapy.

To your health!

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