About 50% of men over 50 have an enlarged prostate or benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive an d Kidney Diseases. By the age of 80, almost 90% of men will be living with BPH.
The good news is that a diet rich in certain vitamins and minerals can keep your prostate healthy and lower your risk of BPH. Being overweight is another risk factor for developing the disease. Making nutritious food choices is therefore also a great way to reduce both your weight and your risk.
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Here are some foods to consume for this purpose:
Sesame seeds are rich in zinc. The mineral is essential for prostate health, according to a reliable study. Men with BPH or prostate cancer have lower levels of zinc in their bodies, sometimes up to 75% lower than those with healthy prostate.
Zinc from food is easier to absorb than zinc supplements. Help your body by munching on sesame seeds. Almonds, adzuki beans, and pumpkin seeds are also high in zinc.
Tomatoes (raw or cooked)
Tomatoes are rich in lycopene, the brilliant carotenoid, which gives the plant its red color. Lycopene can reduce the risk of developing prostate cancer. It can also help men with BPH. According to a study lycopene slowed the progression of BPH in participants.
Lycopene also helps reduce prostate specific antigen (PSA) linked to prostate inflammation, BPH, and prostate cancer. Just be sure to include your lycopene-rich food with a fat like avocado, nuts, oil, or butter to improve absorption.
Avocados are high in beta-sitosterol, a plant sterol believed to reduce symptoms associated with BPH. Some men who take beta-sitosterol supplements report having better urine output and less residual urine volume.
Besides avocados, other foods high in beta-sitosterol include: pumpkin seeds, wheat germ, soybeans, pecans.