Beat back bathroom emergencies with herbs
Your body wakes you up because you've got to go... badly.
So, you stumble to the bathroom in the dark... only to find that your big "emergency" doesn't amount to much more than a trickle.
When you've got an enlarged prostate, a.k.a. benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), it can feel like every time your bladder is demanding you run to the urinal, it's just crying wolf.
To rid yourself of those bathroom trips in the "wee hours" (sorry, pun intended) that wreak havoc on your sleep, you're probably willing to take ANY pill your doc prescribes.
But whatever you do, DON'T fill a script for the common BPH drug Avodart (a.k.a. dutasteride) -- because a new study shows that its long-term impact on your health could be DEVASTATING.
The study out of Boston University Medical Center compared men with BPH who took Avodart and those with BPH who took a different prostate drug, called Flomax (a.k.a. tamsulosin).
After about three years, those taking Avodart wound up with some pretty alarming side effects that those on Flomax didn't have at all.
First off, Avodart increased their blood sugar, upping their risk of diabetes.
As if that weren't bad enough, the drug sent their cholesterol soaring and put them at greater risk of developing non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD).
And to add insult to injury, it also WORSENED the troubles they'd been having in the bedroom.
The researchers concluded that, overall, instead of making life with BPH easier, Avodart DECREASED the men's quality of life.
Getting up a few times at night sure seems like a "drop in the bucket" compared to the problems Avodart can cause!
Now, this news might make you clamor for Flomax, but before you do, I'll warn you: That one isn't exactly side-effect free, either.
Sure, I'd take Flomax's risk of nausea and dizziness over major metabolic harm any day... but there's really no need to pop a pill for BPH at all.
Instead of a drug, try the dynamic herbal duo of stinging nettle and saw palmetto.
Studies have shown that this supplement combo relieves urinary BPH symptoms as well as drugs do -- but without side effects.
Make sure your palmetto extract is 85 to 95 percent fatty acids and sterol -- otherwise, it may not have enough potency to get the job done. Typically, 160 milligrams of it twice daily combined with 300 milligrams of stinging nettle extract daily will do the trick, but talk to your doc about the right dosage for you.
You can often get both of these ingredients in a good prostate support supplement formula, rather than having to buy and take them separately.
But why stop there?
BPH can actually be a symptom of zinc and/or essential fatty acid deficiency -- and you can get more of both of these nutrients by adding unroasted sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds to your diet or by taking high-quality zinc supplements and fatty acid-rich flaxseed oil.