Why Prostate Health Is Important for Men

12 08 2008

Although most men don’t understand the overall role, function or importance of prostate health, men over 40 should make every attempt to take care of the prostate gland.  The prostate to a man should be what breast health is to a woman.  Both examinations check for abnormalities within the soft gland tissue.  During a rectal prostate exam the physician is feeling for a hard or lumpy tissue signature that may require further examination.  The prostate gland has two main functions (also known as an exocrine gland that secretes fluids).  These fluids are important in the production of the male reproductive semen.  The prostate gland is also responsible for controlling the flow of urine.  The prostate is slightly larger than a walnut and surrounds the urethra just below the urinary bladder and can be felt during a rectal exam.  The urethra like the prostate also has two main functions: To carry urine from the bladder and carry semen. 

The prostate continues to grow during most of a man’s life.  This growth does not usually affect prostate health until later in life.  Three common prostate medical diagnosis:  1) Prostatitis – Inflammation of the prostate gland.  Where acute and chronic prostate enlargement conditions are due to bacterial infections and treated with antibiotics.  Possible causes of Prostatitis:  Bacteria & yeast driven infection, virus, food allergy BPH, Auto-immune response, possible rare tumor, physical injury.  2) Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) occurs in older men.  After the age of 50, half of all men have enlarging prostates and by the time they are 80, 80% of these men will have significantly enlarged prostates.  The prostate enlarges to a point where urination is extremely difficult and painful.  BPH can be treated with medication and in extreme cases surgery is required to remove the prostate. 3) Prostate Cancer – One of the most common cancers affecting older men in developed countries and a significant cause of death.  The lethality of prostate cancer stems from the fact, “as an endocrine gland the potential to spread cancer is great (cancerous tumors develop by growth and division “metastasis”) and remission becomes less favorable without prompt treatment.”  The prostate also produces a protein called Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA).  The PSA protein produced in the prostate, also found in the semen can be traced in the blood stream.  An elevated PSA blood test is typical when testing to determine if one has prostate cancer but does not necessarily mean you have cancer.  Prostatitis can also elevate PSA levels in the blood.  Regular rectal exams are recommended for older men to detect prostate cancer early. 

If you experience any of the following symptoms seek medical advisement:  Trouble sleeping at night, frequent visits to the bathroom, erectile problems, blood in the urine, poor flow of urine, difficulty in starting the stream.

RECOMMENDATIONS
1)   Limit intake of caffeine and alcohol.  Give up smoking.  Drink plenty of water.
2)   Diet turns out to be of primary importance.  Also high fiber intake is very important.
3)   Start a regular regiment of mild daily exercise.
4)   Get an annual PSA and prostate exam especially after the age of 50.
5)   Visit our wellness company at the home site.  Inquire about our prostate health supplements.

 Author:  Marc T. Woodard, MBA, BS Exercise Science, USA Medical Services Officer, CPT, RET.  2008 Copyright.  All rights reserved, Mirror Athlete Publishing, www.mirrorathlete.com, Sign up for FREE Monthly eNewsletter.