The nut-sized gland called the prostate lies between the base of your penis and your bladder. This small gland has a mighty job: It must produce the seminal fluid that carries your sperm into a partner and allows you to ejaculate.
When your prostate isn’t healthy, you don’t feel well, either. Although the most common condition that affects your prostate is benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), the most deadly is prostate cancer, which kills more than 34,000 men in the United States each year.
Because the prostate sits so near the bladder, if it gets too large it can interfere with your ability to urinate. Although BPH doesn’t cause cancer, both BPH and prostate cancer have similar symptoms, including urinary incontinence, dribbling, and failure to void urine.
Prostate cancer is rare. However, BPH is common, with its risk increasing as you age.
Our physicians at Men's T Clinic® are specialists in men’s health. That’s why we encourage you to adopt the following five prostate-healthy lifestyle habits, no matter how old you are. And fortunately, prostate-healthy habits increase your overall health, too.
1. Eat a fresh, whole-foods diet
Fruits and vegetables are full of phytonutrients and antioxidants that help your cells stay healthy and replenished. The easiest way to improve your diet is to switch to the plant-heavy Mediterranean diet, which is also filled with healthy fats, such as avocados and olives.
On the Mediterranean diet you’ll eat delicious foods, such as:
- Fatty fish, including salmon
- Poultry and eggs in moderate amounts
- Lots of fruits and veggies, such as pomegranates
- Beans and legumes
- Olive oil, olives, and avocados
- Nuts and seeds
- Whole grains
- Modest amounts of red wine
- Limited amounts of lean red meats and dairy
If you add spices and herbs to your foods, you not only make them more flavorful, but you benefit from their health-boosting properties.
You may also need supplements to ensure that you get all the vitamins and minerals your body needs.
2. Cut down or cut out alcohol and processed foods
Both alcohol and processed foods can cause unhealthy inflammation in your body. You’ll want to eliminate processed foods, which are also low in nutrients and high in chemicals that could compromise your health.
When you shift your focus around eating to nutrition instead of taste alone, you may find that you’re so full of pomegranates and cucumbers and other good foods that you don’t have room for nutrition-poor processed foods, alcohol, and other indulgences.
3. Get more exercise
To keep your prostate and other organs healthy, be sure you move throughout the day and also exercise several times per week. Gone are the days when one or two long bouts at the gym were considered enough. Now you must move all day long like our ancestors did.
In fact, sitting for more than 30 minutes at a time is as bad — or worse — for your body as smoking. Every half an hour or so, get up and stretch and walk around for a few minutes. You can also use a standing desk and park far away from your destinations for extra walking time.
Also be sure to get exercise that makes you break a sweat regularly. More exercise and a better diet reduces one of the main risk factors for BPH and prostate cancer: obesity. If you have trouble maintaining a healthy weight, we can help you with medically supervised weight loss.
4. Restore your hormones
As men age, they lose the androgen called testosterone (T), which helps keep the prostate healthy. High enough T levels also maintain your muscle density and strength, so that you burn calories more quickly.
If you have low T, you might start accumulating fat and losing muscle. The heavier you get, the more likely you are to develop prostate problems. Our doctors test your T levels and then recommend testosterone replacement therapy if they’re too low.
5. Get a prostate exam each year
As part of your annual men’s health exam at Men’s T Clinic®, our physicians check the health of your prostate. Every man receives a digital rectal exam (DRE). Yup, that’s the awful test where a doctor sticks a gloved finger up your anus and you cough. But the “awful” test could save your life.
If you’re between ages 55-69 or at high risk for prostate cancer, we may also recommend a prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test to determine if your levels of PSA are within normal ranges. We may also advise you to get your first test at age 40 or so, to help establish a baseline “normal” value unique to you.
Show your prostate you care by contacting our Men’s T Clinic® office that's nearest you -- in Dallas, Frisco, The Colony, Houston, Cypress, Pearland, Pasadena, Grapevine, and Spring, Texas. You can phone us or use the online booking form to set up a men’s health consultation today.