The prostate gland, which is normally about the size and shape of a walnut, surrounds the urethra between the pubic bone and the rectum, below the bladder. The prostate gland secretes a fluid that is discharged with sperm. As the prostate grows larger, it may press on the urethra. This narrowing of the urethra can cause some men with prostate enlargement to have trouble with urination.
Prostate enlargement or Benign prostatic hypertrophy (BPH) is the most common health problem in men older than 60 years.
Causes of Enlarged Prostate
Enlargement of prostate is caused by vitiated vayu and apaana vayu. This vitiation is caused by:
- Controlling the urge of urination
- Controlling the urge of defecation
- Over indulgence in sex
- Consuming dry food
- Consuming very cold and less quantity of food
- Old age
- General weakness
Symptoms of Enlarged Prostate
- Difficulty starting urination
- Dribbling of urine, especially after urinating
- A sense of not emptying the bladder
- Leaking of urine
- More frequent urination and a strong and sudden desire to urinate, especially at night
- Difficulty to control the urination urge
- Feeling a burning sensation when passing urine
- Passing urine mixed with blood (symptom of infection)
Ayurvedic Tips for Enlarged Prostate
- Avoid drinking more liquids after 6 pm to reduce the need to urinate frequently during the night.
- Drink 8 glasses of water a day to help prevent bacteria from accumulating in the bladder.
- Drink cranberry juice 4 times a day to increase the acidity of the urine, especially if you feel a urinary tract infection coming on.
- Alcohol, tobacco, coffee increase vata and vitiate it. Hence avoid alcohol, tobacco and coffee, especially after dinner.
- Avoid foods which cause constipation as constipation causes vitiation of vata.
Ayurvedic diet recommendations for Enlarged Prostate
Prostate enlargement is caused by an imbalance in Vata dosha, hence, it is important to avoid Vata-aggravating foods. These include dry, cold, bitter, astringent, and pungent foods. Instead, favor the Vata-pacifying diet, which includes sweet, sour, and salty tastes and warm, oily foods.
Foods like wheat, rice, milk, tomatoes, yogurt, citrus fruits are recommended, while care should be taken to minimize spicy, bitter foods and astringents like beans and apples. For pacifying vata, larger portions of food can be eaten, but not more than what can be digested easily.
All dairy products are believed to balance vata dosha, but take care to consume warm milk and avoid milk after a full meal. Also spices like ginger, cumin, cardamom, cloves, cinnamon, mustard seeds, black pepper apart from non-vegetarian food (except beef) and nuts are found to be good. However, all vegetables belonging to beans category except mung dhal and tofu should be avoided.
Include lots of fiber in diet (fruits and vegetables which are rich in fiber).
Ayurvedic Herbs to Treat Enlarged Prostate
These herbs are the best Ayurvedic treatment for prostate enlargement:
It contains lipids, di-benzo compounds, small peptides and various other organic compounds that help in treating enlarged prostate. It is excellent for burning micturition, urinary tract infections, enlarged prostate, increased PSA levels, infections of the kidneys, bladder or the urinary tract. It helps in increasing the urine flow and is a wonderful natural ayurvedic treatment for benign prostate enlargement.
2Ushira (Vetiveria Zizanioides)
Ushira is popularly known as Khas, Khas or Khus grass in India. It is a densely tufted grass which is found all throughout the plains of India. Khus grass is a diuretic and also does not aggravate Kapha. It relieves burning micturition and dysuria, and helps purify the blood thus removing accumulated toxins and also relieves infection and inflammation.
3Swet Chandan (Santalum Album)
Sandalwood is a cooling herb which can vitiate the effect of prostate problems brought on by Pitta dosha such as urinary tract infections, due to too much heat or due to too much drinking of alcohol, respiratory disorders, cystitis and gonorrhea. Massage with the essential oil diluted in a carrier oil. Sandalwood essential oil can also be ingested internally, like consuming 3-4 drops of the oil with a glass of milk can help in healing infections of the genital or urinary tract.
4Gokshura (Tribulus terrestris)
Gokshura being a prostate herb helps maintain optimum kidney and urinary functions by reducing renal discomfort and prostate problems. Gokshura helps alleviate uro-genital ailments, including kidney stones, cystitis (bladder infection) and infections. Considered as Ayurveda’s best herbs for the kidneys, it promotes the flow of urine, and soothes the membranes of the urinary tract.
5Khadir (Acacia catechu)
It has anti-microbial, antioxidant, 5α-reductase enzyme inhibitory & conversion of testosterone to dihydrotestosterone properties. All these activities combine and help to reduce the prostate size. This is the most effective Ayurvedic treatment for prostate enlargement.
6Shatavari (Asparagus racemosus)
It is a soothing general remedy for the genitourinary system. A builder and balancer for reproductive organs, it increases semen quality as well as quantity.
This cooling herb acts as a blood cleanser, supports the immune system, and acts as a soothing treatment for dry or inflamed membranes of the sex organs. As a mild diuretic, it can relieve the congestion of the boggy prostate.
7Punarnava (Boerhavia Diffusa)
It is used as an effective diuretic, anti-spasmodic, and anti-inflammatory remedy with pain relieving qualities for urinary tract issues, including infections. Unlike most diuretics, which are detoxifying, punarnava is a tissue builder.
Pygeum has been shown in studies to improve urinary outflow, reduce residual urine left in the bladder, and to help with urinary urgency and frequency.
The major active components of pygeum bark are fatty acids and fat-soluble sterols called phytosterols. Phytosterols can inhibit the body’s production of dihydrotestosterone (DHT), which is a hormone that can increase the risk of BPH and prostate cancer. Pygeum also reduces the number of receptor sites where DHT can attach to cells.