Men's health: Swollen Prostate Getting You Up at Night

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Men's health: Swollen Prostate Getting You Up at Night

Many men over the age of fifty find themselves awakened during the night, needing to use the bathroom. As the years go by, the frequency of night-time urination seems to increase. The problem is very common a swollen prostate gland putting pressure on the bladder. There are natural substances that have been proven to help. This is good news, because part of men's health [http://www.feelgoodforlife.com/health/mens-health/] is related to their prostate health.
The prostate is unique. Other parts of your body atrophy and shrink from disuse. Your muscles get bigger with exercise and shrink if you're bedridden, but the prostate gland swells from disuse. Once a man is less sexually active in middle age or beyond, his prostate is no longer being used to produce seminal fluids, so it slowly enlarges until he experiences a significant swelling of the prostate known as 'benign prostatic hyperplasia' (BPH). Since the prostate gland sits directly beneath the urinary bladder, as it swells it puts pressure on the bladder -- giving symptoms of urgency (you 'gotta go NOW!') and nocturia (needing to urinate during the night).
There's a natural health option to help reduce BPH. Serenoa repens is a short cabbage palm that grows in Florida and is commonly known as the saw palmetto plant. Saw palmetto has been used and widely studied for the treatment of pelvic pain, bladder problems, loss of sex drive, hair loss and particularly for prostatic hypertrophy (swollen prostate). Saw palmetto has a positive therapeutic effect on everything from BPH to hair loss because it appears to inhibit dihydrotestosterone (a by-product of the male hormone testosterone), which is found in the prostate, testes and hair follicles.
In eleven out of twelve clinical studies of men taking saw palmetto, the results showed significant improvement of nocturia (night-time urination) and dysuria (painful urination) conditions. Additionally, urinary flow volume increased and residual urine (urine left in the bladder) decreased. 
One study of men diagnosed with BPH who were given saw palmetto extract, showed it to have "long-term efficacy and tolerability" with impressive results. At six, twelve, eighteen and twenty-four months, those taking saw palmetto extract had better sexual function and better 'urodynamics' (improved urine flow), while their prostate size actually decreased. Importantly, saw palmetto did not affect or falsely skew the results of their PSA (Prostate Specific Antigen), a test for prostate cancer).
Clinical studies have shown saw palmetto to be effective in nearly ninety percent of men who took it, without any of the toxicity or side effects commonly found in drugs given for the same problem. This natural herbal supplement can benefit men with BPH, restoring prostate health and improving quality of life. 
Vitamin E, selenium, flaxseed oil and lycopene (found in tomatoes) are also useful in conjunction with saw palmetto for the improvement of men's health and the enhancement of prostate function. Give them a try. You just might sleep through the night!
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Dr. Christopher Lyden contributes articles on heart health for Feelgoodforlife.com. More information on heart health and other topics can be found at http://www.feelgoodforlife.com.
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