The Health Benefits of Amla (Indian Gooseberry)


Amla, also known as amalika or Indian gooseberry, is an Indian Ayurvedic remedy that is gaining popularity in the Western world. It is also recognized under the names of Emblica officinalis and Phyllanthus emblica.

Amla enjoys a mythical reputation in India, due to a belief in that it originated from drops of Amrit, the nectar of immortality.

It is thus asserted to confer longevity and to cure nearly every disease, hence its designation as a rasayana or rejuvenator in Ayurveda. While these claims lie within the realm of myth, has modern science validated any of amla's benefits?

Amla Is Really Healthy

Amla fruit has been found to contain a high amount of the antioxidant vitamin C, and its tannins were shown to possess vitamin C-like properties.1,2 An article that calls amla "the Ayurvedic wonder" notes that the plant also contains phenolic compounds, phyllembelic acid, phyllembelin, rutin, curcuminoids and emblicol.3

A review published in 2011 in the European Journal of Cancer Prevention titled, "Amla (Emblia officinalis Gaertn), a wonder berry in the treatment and prevention of cancer," provides a long list of properties attributed to amla.4

The authors observe that "The fruit is used either alone or in combination with other plants to treat many ailments such as common cold and fever; as a diuretic, laxative, liver tonic, to manage cholesterol, support heart health, ease inflammation, as a hair tonic; to prevent peptic ulcer and dyspepsia, and as a digestive aid.

Amla's Case for Cholesterol

Early research found an association between supplementation with amla and protection against elevated serum cholesterol in rabbits given a cholesterol-rich diet.5 In humans, 28 days of amla supplementation lowered cholesterol in those with normal and elevated levels, which returned to near pretreatment levels two weeks after amla was discontinued.6

In human umbilical vein endothelial cells, it was shown that the amla compound corilagin and its analog Dgg16 decrease malondialdehyde, a marker of oxidative stress, while preventing the adherence of monocytes to the cells, indicating an inhibitory effect on atherosclerosis progression.7 In rat vascular smooth muscle cells, both compounds inhibited proliferation activated by oxidized low density lipoprotein (LDL).

A clinical trial of amla in overweight and obese adults resulted in lower LDL-cholesterol, total cholesterol to high density lipoprotein (HDL) ratio, high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP, a marker of inflammation) and platelet aggregation after 12 weeks of supplementation, suggesting that amla could benefit overweight or obese individuals by reducing several cardiovascular disease risk factors.8

In a trial that included diabetics and nondiabetics, amla lowered fasting and post-meal blood glucose levels, total and LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, while improving HDL cholesterol.9

Amla Supports Liver Health

In addition to the cardiovascular system, amla has been shown to benefit the liver. According to a recent review that noted that over 10% of the world's population is affected by liver diseases, "Scientific studies have shown amla to be effective in preventing/ameliorating the toxic effects of hepatotoxic agents like ethanol, paracetamol, carbon tetrachloride, heavy metals, ochratoxins, hexachlorocyclohexane, antitubercular drugs, and hepatotoxicity resulting from iron overload.

Amla is also reported to impart beneficial effects on liver function and to mitigate hyperlipidemia and metabolic syndrome. Amla possesses protective effects against chemical-induced hepatocarcinogenesis in animal models of study." 10

Amla May Offer Environmental Protection

Other research has found a protective effect for amla against chromosomal damage caused by lead and aluminum.11,12

Amla also appears to have a cosmetic benefit. In one experiment, amla stimulated fibroblast proliferation and induced procollagen production, while decreasing matrix metalloproteinase-1, which breaks down collagen.13

Amla was also shown to inhibit ultraviolet B (UVB)-induced photoaging in human skin fibroblasts through its ability to scavenge reactive oxygen species.14 Its ability to protect against reactive oxygen species induced by UVB appears to be stronger than that of vitamin C.15

The Bottom Line

It appears that some of amla's mythologic properties may indeed be valid. While there's no evidence that it will confer immortality, one interesting study conducted in 2014 found that turmeric, from which curcumin is derived, as well as amla fruit increased the life span of Drosophila melanogaster, a fruit fly that is the subject of a fair amount of gerontologic research.16

The authors concluded that "the results support the free radical theory of aging as both these plant derivatives show high reactive oxygen species (ROS) scavenging activities."

References

  1. J Ethnopharmacol. 2006 Mar 8;104(1-2):113-8.
  2. Indian J Exp Biol. 1999 Jul;37(7):676-80.
  3. J Basic Clin Physiol Pharmacol. 2010;21(1):93-105.
  4. Eur J Cancer Prev. 2011 May;20(3):225-39.
  5. Br J Exp Pathol. 1981 Oct;62(5):526-8.
  6. Eur J Clin Nutr. 1988 Nov;42(11):939-44.
  7. Yakugaku Zasshi. 2005 Jul;125(7):587-91.
  8. J Med Food. 2015 Apr;18(4):415-20.
  9. Int J Food Sci Nutr. 2011 Sep;62(6):609-16.
  10. Food Funct. 2013 Oct;4(10):1431-41.
  11. Mutat Res. 1990 Jul;241(3):305-12.
  12. Environ Mol Mutagen. 1993;21(3):229-36.
  13. J Ethnopharmacol. 2008 Sep 2;119(1):53-7.
  14. J Ethnopharmacol. 2010 Oct 28;132(1):109-14.
  15. J Cosmet Sci. 2011 Jan-Feb;62(1):49-56.
  16. Biomed Res Int. 2014;2014:910290.

search

The Pressure to Beat Glaucoma


Glaucoma, a major cause of blindness, is characterized by increased intraocular pressure (although it can also occur with normal intraocular pressure), optic nerve damage, and the gradual loss of peripheral vision. Often, the increase in pressure is the result of inadequate drainage of aqueous humor, which normally flows from the posterior chamber behind the iris to the anterior chamber in front of the iris.

Approximately 90% of glaucoma cases are of the open angle form, in which there is a wide, open angle between the eye's iris and cornea. In angle-closure glaucoma, the angle between the iris and cornea is narrow. While open angle glaucoma develops slowly, angle-closure glaucoma comes on suddenly. Both types of glaucoma impair aqueous humor outflow.

Other forms include congenital glaucoma and variants of open-angle and angle-closure glaucoma that include secondary glaucoma, exfoliative glaucoma, traumatic glaucoma, and more.

Several treatments for glaucoma exist, mainly in the form of eye drops, including the prostaglandin analog bimatoprost that has gained recognition over the past several years due to its ability to thicken and darken the eyelashes, resulting in the prescription cosmetic known as Latisse®. There are also surgical treatment options that have had limited success.

B-Vitamins, Antioxidant Support, and More

Nutritional therapies for glaucoma can help lower intraocular pressure without the side effects of drugs, however, they are most often suggested to act in complement with standard therapies rather than replace them.

A study of dietary factors and glaucoma noted that greater consumption of carrots, collard greens, kale, and peaches were associated with significantly lower risk for glaucoma in women in comparison with consumption of the foods less than once per month.1

These foods are high in vitamins A, B2, and C, as well as carotenoids. Supplemental vitamin C has been associated with a lower risk of developing glaucoma in a study of a subgroup of participants in the 2005−2006 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.2 Subjects whose supplemental vitamin C intake was among the top 20% of subjects had a 53% lower risk of the disease than those among the lowest 20%.

Supplementation with alpha lipoic acid, a compound that has shown rejuvenating effect in gerontologic experiments,3,4 was shown to both help prevent and treat glaucoma in a mouse model by reducing oxidative stress and limiting disease-related retinal ganglion cell death and dysfunction.5

A study that included patients with dry eye disorders and those with nonadvanced primary open-angle glaucoma (who frequently develop dry eye in association with the use of eye drops used to treat the disease) found that daily supplementation with antioxidants including vitamins A, C and E plus essential fatty acids (EPA, DHA) for three months improved dry eye signs and symptoms compared with those who did not receive the supplements.6

Forskolin (Coleus forskohli) is an herb that has been used topically to help control intraocular pressure. A study that evaluated orally administered forskolin combined with rutin (a glycoside of quercetin) in a group of patients with primary open angle glaucoma being treated with a topical drug regimen found a 10% decrease in intraocular pressure in treated subjects, while intraocular pressure remained stable in the control group.7

A similar investigation of this nutrient combination plus vitamins B1 and B2 resulted in an approximate 20% decrease in intraocular pressure in comparison with pretreatment values, leading the authors of the report to conclude that, "[...[ forskolin and rutin given through the oral route appear to reach the ocular district, where they can act in synergy with topical pharmacological treatments, and contribute to the control of intraocular pressure.8

The intake of the B vitamin folate has been linked with a lower risk of exfoliative glaucoma or suspected disease.9 An evaluation of 78,980 women who participated in the Nurses' Health Study and 41,221 male participants in the Health Professionals Follow-Up study found a 25% lower risk of diagnosed or suspected exfoliative glaucoma among those whose intake of folate was among the highest 20% compared with the lowest 20%.

Further investigation revealed that folate from supplements but not from diet was responsible for the protective effect9. Other research involving patients with exfoliative glaucoma and exfoliation syndrome (which increases the risk of exfoliative glaucoma) has found an association with elevated plasma homocysteine, which is treatable with B vitamins.10

Healthy Blood Flow

While the cause of normal tension glaucoma is unknown, one hypothesis concerning its occurrence suggests that the disease is due to reduced blood flow to the optic nerve. To investigate this vascular hypothesis, researchers in Seoul, Korea evaluated the effects of Ginkgo biloba, which has beneficial effects on blood circulation and other benefits, and bilberry anthocyanins, which have an affinity for the eye and vascular tissues.11

After treatment for nearly two years, normal tension glaucoma patients who received anthocyanins or ginkgo experienced improvement in the Humphrey Visual Field test, which is used to evaluate peripheral vision that becomes impaired with glaucoma. Improvement also occurred in best corrected-visual acuity among those who received anthocyanins, while deteriorating in the control group.

Another study that tested anthocyanins from black currant resulted in improved ocular blood flow in comparison with a placebo group.12

A review suggests that resveratrol, a compound occurring in red grapes and wine, could aid in the prevention of glaucoma, due to its vascular-enhancing properties that support the eyes' microcirculation.13

In 2008, Molecular Vision published the finding of researchers at Italy's University of Chieti-Pescara of improved ocular blood flow and lowered average intraocular pressure in association with Mirtogenol®, a combination of Mirtoselect® from bilberry and Pycnogenol® from French Maritime pine bark, in a study that included 38 asymptomatic participants with intraocular hypertension.14

The authors of the study conclude that dietary intervention with the combination may help prevent progression to higher intraocular pressure and symptomatic glaucoma. They note that bilberry and Pycnogenol® have been used as supplements for decades without significant side effects.

The Bottom Line

Glaucoma, while slow-progressing in its most common manifestation, remains an eventual thief of sight. It is imperative that anyone with glaucoma or suspected glaucoma receive treatment by an ophthalmologist. Progression of the disease may be slowed with early detection and treatment. Nutritional supplements may be added in the hope of boosting results. Please consult with your physician concerning the compatibility with your medication regimen of any supplements under consideration.

References:

  1. Coleman AL et al. Am J Ophthalmol. 2008 Jun;145(6):1081-9.
  2. Wang SY et al. Eye (Lond). 2013 Apr;27(4):487-94.
  3. Liu J et al. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2002 Feb 19;99(4):2356-61.
  4. Shenk JC et al. J Neurol Sci. 2009 Aug 15;283(1-2):199-206.
  5. Inman DM et al. PLoS One. 2013 Jun 5;8(6):e65389.
  6. Galbis-Estrada C et al. Clin Interv Aging. 2013;8:711-9.
  7. Vertrugno M et al. J Ocul Pharmacol Ther. 2012 Oct;28(5):536-41.
  8. Pescosolido N et al. Clin Ter. 2010;161(3):e81-5.
  9. Kang JH et al. JAMA Ophthalmol. 2014 May;132(5):549-59.
  10. Vessani RM et al. Am J Ophthalmol. 2003 Jul;136(1):41-6.
  11. Shim SH et al. J Med Food. 2012 Sep;15(9):818-23.
  12. Ohguro H et al. Ophthalmologica. 2012;228(1):26-35.
  13. Bola C et al. Graefes Arch Clin Exp Ophthalmol. 2014 May;252(5):699-713.
  14. Steigerwalt RD et al. Mol Vis. 2008 Jul 10;14:1288-92.

search

Health Benefits of Hops: Menopause & More


Humulus lupulus (hops) are best known for their role in beer, however, the flowers of the plant are also being investigated for their health benefits — in particular, those which affect women.

In 1999, a potent phytoestrogen, 8-prenylnaringenin, whose activity was stronger than that of other phytoestrogens, was found in Humulus lupulus.1

Phytoestrogens found in plants can have estrogenic or antiestrogenic effects due to their ability to occupy estrogen receptor sites, thereby blocking estrogen made in the body. This may enable some plant compounds to provide some of the benefits of estrogen while blocking some of their adverse effects.

While 8-prenylnaringenin has strong estrogenic activity, the authors of one study point out that the concentration needed to stimulate the vaginal epithelium of ovariectomized mice (female rodents whose ovaries have been removed) was about 500 times greater than that of any beer, which helps to alleviate concerns regarding potential adverse effects.2

Indeed, another study that utilized ovariectomized rodents found lower levels of serum estrogen after supplementation with hops, in addition to a reduction in insulin, serum free fatty acids, and malondialdehyde, a marker of oxidative stress.3 Hops have also been found to contain resveratrol, an antioxidant compound that has elicited some of the effects of calorie restriction.4

(H)optimize Your Cells

Xanthohumol, another hops compound, has been shown to help prevent the initiation, promotion, and progression stage of carcinogenesis.5 Among xanthohumol's properties are inhibition of cyclooxygenase-1 (COX-1) and COX-2 enzymes, which have inflammatory effects, as well as an ability to scavenge reactive oxygen species. When tested in cultured mouse mammary gland tissue, xanthohumol prevented carcinogen-induced precancerous lesions.

Another investigation of the effects of xanthohumol, isoxanthohumol, and 8-prenylnaringenin found an ability to decrease estrogen synthesis.6 In prostate cancer cells and benign prostate hyperplasia cells, xanthohumol decreased cell viability, increased apoptosis, and dampened the activation of nuclear factor-kappa beta which, when dysregulated, has been associated with cancer, inflammation, and other conditions.7 In human colon cancer cells, treatment with xanthohumol also induced apoptosis by downregulating an anti-apoptotic protein and activating caspases.8

Hops for Menopausal Women

The first prospective, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study of the ability of hop extract to alleviate some of the symptoms of menopause was reported in 2006.9 Sixty-seven menopausal women received a standardized hop extract or a placebo for 12 weeks. By six weeks, hot flash scores were reduced in women who received hops in comparison with the placebo. Interestingly, a lower dose of hops extract was more effective than a higher dose.

In ovariectomized rats that exhibited elevated skin temperature caused by estrogen withdrawal, as an animal model of menopausal hot flushes, 8-prenylnaringenin from hops reduced the animals' skin temperature after just two days of treatment.10 The effect was blocked by simultaneous administration of an estrogen receptor antagonist.

Results of a randomized trial of menopausal women reported in 2010 suggested superiority of a standardized hop extract in comparison with a placebo.11 The authors of the report conclude that: "[…]phytoestrogen preparations containing this standardized hop extract may provide an interesting alternative to women seeking relief of mild vasomotor symptoms."

Another randomized trial, reported in 2016, that compared the effects of hops to a placebo in women with early menopausal symptoms found a significantly lower number of hot flashes in hops-treated women and improved average Greene score (an assessment of menopausal symptoms) at 4, 8, and 12 weeks.12

Ovariectomized female rats given hops extract demonstrated increased sexual motivation.13 Since low libido is a frequent menopausal complaint, hops could be worth trying by women with this symptom.

Another menopausal complaint is poor sleep. A study of nurses who worked rotating or night shifts experienced better nighttime sleep quality after drinking nonalcoholic beer containing hops at dinnertime for fourteen days.14 Participants also reported a decrease in anxiety. Similar effects were found in university students who consumed nonalcoholic beer with dinner.15

Your Brain on Hops

Hops also show promise against another age-related condition: Alzheimer's disease. Screening of over 1,600 plant extracts by Japanese researchers resulted in the identification of hops as having the ability to inhibit amyloid beta, the toxic protein that accumulates in the brains of individuals afflicted by Alzheimer's disease.16

In a mouse model of Alzheimer's disease, the researchers found that animals that received drinking water to which hops extract was added had decreased amyloid beta deposits in their brains and less memory impairment at 9 and 12 months than untreated mice.

Based on these findings, drinking beer in moderation may not be as bad as some have made it out to be. However, it's not necessary to increase one's alcohol intake to obtain the benefits of hops. Nonalcoholic beer and hops extract can be consumed on a regular basis without the concerns associated with alcoholic beverages.

References:

  1. Milligan SR et al. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 1999 Jun;84(6):2249-52.
  2. Milligan S et al. Reproduction. 2002 Feb;123(2):235-42.
  3. Wang J et al. Zhong Yao Cai. 2004 Feb;27(2):105-7.
  4. Callemien D et al. J Agric Food Chem. 2005 Jan 26;53(2):424-9.
  5. Gerhäuser C et al. Mol Cancer Ther. 2002 Sep;1(11):959-69.
  6. Monteiro R et al. J Agric Food Chem. 2006 Apr 19;54(8):2938-43.
  7. Colgate EC et al. Cancer Lett. 2007 Feb 8;246(1-2):201-9.
  8. Pan L et al. Mol Nutr Food Res. 2005 Sep;49(9):837-43.
  9. Heyerick A et al. Maturitas. 2006 May 20;54(2):164-75.
  10. Bowe J et al. J Endocrinol. 2006 Nov;191(2):399-405.
  11. Erkkola R et al. Phytomedicine. 2010 May;17(6):389-96.
  12. Aghamiri V et al. Complement Ther Clin Pract. 2016 May;23:130-5.
  13. Di Viesti V et al. J Ethnopharmacol. 2011 Mar 24;134(2):514-7.
  14. Franco L et al. PLoS One. 2012;7(7):e37290.
  15.  Franco L et al. Acta Physiol Hung. 2014 Sep;101(3):353-61.
  16. Sasoaka N et al. PLoS One. 2014 Jan 29;9(1):e87185.

search

How Much Melatonin Should I Take?

Holli Lapes, RD, LD/N

Melatonin is a hormone that is primarily synthesized in the pineal gland and is released mostly at night.1 Many factors can disrupt the natural release of melatonin in the body. Also, melatonin production naturally declines with age, as is the case with other hormones.1,2

Melatonin can help people fall asleep but may also lead to a better quality of sleep.3 Additionally, melatonin has strong antioxidant properties and can protect cellular DNA and immune function.4

Melatonin is available as a dietary supplement in a liquid or capsule form, with doses varying anywhere from 300 mcg to 10 mg. With so many forms and dosages available, you may be wondering, which dose is right for me? Whether you are new to melatonin or just can’t seem to find a dose that works for you, we're here to help. Like other things in life, supplementation with melatonin could be a process of trial and error.

Some people who have tried melatonin report feeling groggy in the morning after use, which could be caused by an incorrect dose. Make sure when taking melatonin that you have at least 6 to 8 hours to spare for a good night’s sleep, since having to wake up sooner may be the reason for this side effect. Another side effect linked to taking too high a dose of melatonin; bad dreams.

Do You Have Difficulty Falling Asleep?

Anxiety, stress/elevated evening cortisol, and insomnia are among many reasons people have difficulty falling asleep. Shift workers and those with professions that require working hours outside of the norm can also struggle to fall asleep easily. Traveling and the time changes that accompany it may cause your sleep wake cycle to be interrupted as well.

Do you watch TV, use your computer, tablet or smart phone right before bed? The blue light that is emitted from these devices may be interfering with the body’s release of melatonin.5 Try to stay off these devices for at least one hour before bedtime.

Try this: fast-acting melatonin, taken orally as a liquid or pill. If you tend to be very sensitive to new supplements, start at the lowest dose of 300 mcg and titrate up as needed. If you are not particularly sensitive, try a dose of 1 to 3 mg and titrate up as needed.

Do You Have Difficulty Staying Asleep?

Try this: Timed-release melatonin - which works over a six-hour period to help you fall asleep and stay asleep until morning.

If you have trouble staying asleep, before you look to melatonin, you’ll want to ponder the question: Why? Some of the reasons that have already been discussed could play a role in both falling and staying asleep, but there are also a few separate reasons that people have trouble staying asleep, specifically.

Some reasons are gender-specific. For example, in men it could be frequent urination due to BPH or prostatitis. If this is the case, you’ll want to address the underlying cause. Frequent urination, incontinence, and urgency can occur in both men and women. In women, it could be due to changes in the bladder and hormone decline (estrogen, progesterone). Woman who are perimenopausal or postmenopausal will likely have inadequate progesterone levels. Progesterone is calming to the central nervous system and can promote normal sleeping patterns.

Again, seek to correct the underlying cause of the sleep disturbance and consider bioidentical hormone replacement.

No Sleeping Issues? Consider an Anti-Aging Dose of Melatonin

Although most people associate melatonin with sleep, there are a variety of health benefits from melatonin that go beyond sleep, such as brain protection . If the lower doses are well-tolerated, we suggest taking 10 mg for anti-aging benefits.

References:

  1. Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2276624/ Accessed September 1st 2016
  2. Available at: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10841214 Accessed September 1st 2016
  3. Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2082098/ Accessed September 1st 2016
  4. Available at: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10674014 Accessed September 1st 2016
  5. Available at: http://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/blue-light-has-a-dark-side Accessed September 1st 2016
  6. Available at: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16024758 Accessed September 1st 2016

search

3 Ways to Maintain a Healthy Prostate

Steven V. Joyal, M.D.


In today’s fast-paced, technology-driven society, we’re inundated with so much information on
healthy living choices that’s it can be difficult to determine fact from fad. Think about it: from the next things being extolled on Facebook to the barrage of pharmaceutical ads, it’s hard for the average Joe to make informed decisions about their health.

September is National Prostate Health Month, which means it’s a great time to make a concerted effort to cut through that confusion to focus on decisions and lifestyle approaches that can aid prostate health.

First of all, let’s be clear – talking about prostate health can be an uncomfortable subject for many guys out there, but it’s just too important of an issue to be ignored. This year, approximately 200,000 men will develop prostate cancer. Beyond that, one in six men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in his lifetime, and one in 35 will die from the disease.

Those numbers are real – and terrifying - but if we can reset our minds on prostate health to one of general men’s health, we can focus on choices that prevent us from becoming a statistic. And the good thing is that many of the areas of focus for prostate health – diet, exercise, lifestyle choices and dietary supplements – are also key factors in general men’s health.

Diet for a Healthy Prostate

We know there is a direct correlation between a healthy diet and a healthy weight. Two dietary approaches – the traditional Japanese and Mediterranean diets – show some commonalities that are worth considering.

While the traditional Japanese diet tends to be high in green tea, fermented soy, rice, and fish, it also tends to be relatively low in calories and fat. The Mediterranean diet tends to be high in leafy green vegetables, garlic, tomatoes, red wine, olive oil, and fish, but also low in over-all calories in comparison to a traditional Western diet. Where do these traditional diets align? A significant focus on vegetables and fish, lower caloric intakes and less red meat. If men can shift their diets to include more vegetables and less red meat, they’ll see much healthier outcomes – as Michael Polian (author of “The Omnivore’s Dilemma”) says: “Eat food. Not too much. Mainly plants.”

Making changes to increase the amount of vegetables you eat while reducing the amount of red meat and calories you consume will definitively improve your weight, but also your prostate health. A healthy weight and diet is one of the greatest factors in prostate health. While the average healthy and active male should consume 2400-3000 calories a day, a mere reduction of 500 calories can result in a healthy weight loss of 1-2 pounds per week. What does 500 calories look like? One bagel with cream cheese.

Prostate Friendly Lifestyle Choices

Beyond diet, there are many other choices we make on a day-to-day basis that impact our health. Some of these are easy, some not so much. These choices impact our overall health, but more importantly, can impact prostate health. Most physicians will tell you how important it is to exercise regularly, cut out tobacco, reduce alcohol intake and schedule regular doctor visits.

When it comes to exercise, you don’t have to be an Olympian or a triathlete – a mere 30 minutes of exercise 3-5 times a week will have tremendous impact on long-term health. This can be time at the gym, a good walk, or a variety of stay-at-home options, including yoga or basic calisthenics.

Anyone who has paid any attention to their health in the last 50 years knows that experts recommend reducing alcohol intake and eliminating tobacco consumption. First of all, there’s no such thing as healthy use. Tobacco use has been directly linked to cardiovascular illnesses such as emphysema, heart disease, and a variety of cancers.

Many were excited to hear about studies suggesting moderate alcohol intake can have heart-healthy effects, but the key word is MODERATE. For men, this means no more than 2 standard alcoholic drinks per day, and no more than 14 drinks per week. Just like intake of red meat or sugar, alcohol should be consumed in moderation – and don’t forget that alcoholic drinks havecalories (especially beer and mixed drinks) and that should be considered in your daily caloric intake. Wine and hard liquor (served neat, straight, or on the rocks) are better choices to minimize the caloric impact of alcoholic beverages.

Very few people enjoy going to the doctor. But for men concerned about prostate problems – especially men between the ages of 55 and 69 years - – regular doctor visits and blood tests can aid in early detection and treatment for prostate disease. The sooner you know, the better the chance of a good outcome. This is also true when it comes to the prostate; with regular appointments and screening, your doctor can detect, diagnose and treat potential issues sooner.

Dietary Supplements for Prostate Support

Dietary supplements can provide additional support for good health when combined with healthy lifestyle choices (for example, plant-based diet, regular exercise, smoking cessation, reducing or eliminating alcohol intake). For prostate health, some research suggests that beta sitosterol (a type of plant sterol), the mineral boron, vitamin D, lycopene (found in tomatoes), and pygeum extract may offer support for a healthy prostate.

Of course, before beginning any major lifestyle modification program, supplement routine, be sure to talk to your doctor about your ability to exercise safely, as well as the potential benefits & risks of specific dietary supplements if you are also taking prescription medications.

Putting It All to Work

When you really think about it, men’s health isn’t complicated. A plan that consists of healthy and reduced-calorie eating, regular exercise, and if appropriate, integration of nutritional supplements to support your health will go a long way to supporting a healthier, happier prostate – and life. Talk to your doctor today!

About the author:

Steven V. Joyal, M.D. is Chief Medical Officer for Life Extension®, the world’s leading organization dedicated to extending the healthy human life span. Prior to joining Life Extension, Dr. Joyal led pharmaceutical research efforts in cardiometabolic disease for Bristol-Myers Squibb Pharmaceutical Research Institute and Abbott Laboratories/Knoll Pharmaceutical Company in obesity.

Preceding his entry into the pharmaceutical industry, Dr. Joyal was in clinical practice in Rhode Island, including affiliation with Brown University and Women & Infants Hospital. He also managed the Internal Medicine service at Butler Hospital and helped guide member care at the Care New England Wellness Centers in Warwick and East Providence.

Dr. Joyal is a graduate of the Dartmouth/Brown program in allopathic medical education. He is a sought-after authority on men’s health and has been published in peer-reviewed medical journals.

search
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
All Contents Copyright © 1995-2016 Life Extension® All rights reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Use
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
The information provided on this site is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for advice from your physician or other health care professional or any information contained on or in any product label or packaging. You should not use the information on this site for diagnosis or treatment of any health problem or for prescription of any medication or other treatment. You should consult with a healthcare professional before starting any diet, exercise or supplementation program, before taking any medication, or if you have or suspect you might have a health problem. You should not stop taking any medication without first consulting your physician.