After age 40 the male prostate gland increases production of DHT. DHT is a hormone that leads to prostate enlargement and promotes the spread and possibly the development of prostate cancer. 90% of men develop prostate enlargement by age 80.
The Symptoms include decreased urine stream, frequent night time urination, difficulty initiating urination and a frequent urgency to urinate.
One in eight men develop prostate cancer in North America, 80% higher than in many Asian, African and Eastern European Countries. According to The National Cancer Institute, 75% of prostate cancer cases are related to poor diet.[i]
To help reduce the risk of prostate cancer you should consume less animal fat, reduce alcohol intake, eat more broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts and bok choy. Also, to help reduce risk, avoid pan-fried meats, lycopene-containing vegetables and fruits, such as tomatoes and tomato products. Eat fish and omega-3 fats regularly. Vitamin E and selenium supplements may reduce risk as well. Exercise regularly and maintain an ideal body weight.
Many herbs contain natural ingredients that block the buildup of DHT and have been used to reverse prostate enlargement and support male prostate health after age 40. Natural agents proven to block buildup of DHT, reverse enlargement and protect the prostate include: Saw Palmetto Extract, Pygeum Africanum, Beta-sitosterol, soy isoflavones and stinging nettle.
Menopause and Pre-Menstrual Syndrome (PMS):
Female estrogen levels drop by 90% and progesterone levels drop by 66% during menopause. The decline in estrogen and progesterone leads to hot flashes, night sweats and other menopausal symptoms as well as increased risk of osteoporosis and heart disease.
The use of hormone replacement drugs is useful in controlling symptoms, but significantly increases risk of breast cancer, heart disease and stroke.
A proven natural alternative to hormone replacement therapy is the herb black cohosh, soy extract and gamma-oryzanol (derived from rice bran oil). Black cohosh and soy extract contain ingredients that mimic estrogen to control menopausal symptoms and slow the aging process, but are NOT associated with increased risk of reproductive cancers or heart disease.
Menopausal and post-menopausal women should also perform weight bearing exercises and take calcium and Vitamin D from food or supplements to help reduce risk of osteoporosis.
Premenstrual Syndrome is often caused or aggravated by an imbalance of estrogen and progesterone. Black cohosh and Soy Extract are often extremely beneficial in reducing PMS as well. Soy extract contains isoflavones, which block estrogen from over-stimulating reproductive tissues to help control PMS symptoms. Other lifestyle practices to reduce PMS include a low animal fat diet, an increase in dietary fiber intake, regular exercise, 400 to 800 IU of Vitamin E, 400 to 600 mg of Magnesium and an essential fatty acid supplement.
After age 40 to 45 the body decreases its production of glucosamine. Glucosamine is required to make joint cartilage to act as a shock absorber preventing joint degeneration. The reduction in glucosamine as we age contributes to joint degeneration and. osteoarthritis, which is common in people 50 years and older.
Supplementation with glucosamine sulfate has been shown to help repair damaged cartilage, preserve joint cartilage and help manage osteoarthritis. Other natural agents, such as MSM (Methylsulfonylmethane), Bromelain enzymes and Quercetin all work with glucosamine to help suppress joint inflammation and pain.
Certain herbs contain active ingredients similar to aspirin to reduce pain and inflammation, without producing dangerous side effects associated with aspirin and. other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.
These herbs block the chemical PG-2 which produces inflammation and pain. Anti-inflammatory herbs include: turmeric, boswellia,[ii] white willow and ginger.
As with all herbs and herbal supplements there may be side effects and it is recommended that a person knowledgeable in these products is consulted before you ingest any of them. Some people find they help their specific conditions while others do not seem to gain any benefit.
One thing you can be sure of is chiropractic care, which can benefit the young and the old. It is wise to make regular visits to your chiropractor for any aches and pains or as a maintenance program to keep your spine healthy and balanced.
[i] Medical Review: Anne C. Poinier, MD – Internal Medicine & Donald Sproule, MDCM, CCFP – Family Medicine & Carla J. Herman, MD, MPH – Geriatric Medicine: Author: Healthwise Staff . Current as of: February 20, 2015
[ii] Ammon HP.”Modulation of the immune system by Boswellia serrata extracts and boswellic acids. [Review]” Phytomedicine. 17(11):862-7, 2010 Sep.