Prostatitis is an infection or a chronic inﬂammation of the prostate gland. Unlike an enlarged prostate, it strikes men of all ages. The most common form is chronic non- bacterial prostatitis (NBP), also called chronic abacterial prostatitis. This condition is caused by a fungus, a virus, or mycoplasma infections and often cannot be resolved by antibiotics (especially for the fungal and viral infections). An acute bacterial
infection, usually by E. coli, is another cause. An enlarged prostate gland predisposes one to this condition, since urine ﬂow is not as efﬁcient and microbes are more likely to accumulate. In addition, pain in the pelvic ﬂoor muscles can cause pain in the prostate region.
When infected, the prostate becomes inﬂamed and tender, and the man has difﬁ- culty producing a constant ﬂow of urine. The infection produces other symptoms as well, which may include a fever, chills, a pain in the lower back, and bloody urine. The greatest danger of prostatitis is that it will become a chronic problem, in which the bladder cannot empty itself. As with benign enlargement, this constant urine reten- tion can cause an infection or kidney disorders. We have successfully treated several men who had chronic prostatitis who were unresponsive to previous doctors’ treat- ments with antibiotics. Many of the natural therapies mentioned in this chapter work at the root causes of prostatitis, which include nonbacterial infections and prostate enlargement. Homeopathy can be particularly effective for this condition, as can cer- tain nutritional therapies, such as rye pollen extract.
• Urination problems, as with an enlarged prostate
• Lower back pain
• Urine with blood or pus
• Pain in the region between the genitals and the anus
• Food allergies
• Prostate enlargement (contributing to infection)
Eat lots of whole grains and fresh vegetables, and get your protein from beans, ﬁsh, and soy products. To keep chemicals and pesticides out of your system, buy organic produce whenever possible.
Pumpkin seeds are a traditional remedy for prostate problems, and for good rea- son. They’re full of zinc, a nutrient that’s necessary for good prostate health. You can snack on raw pumpkin seeds throughout the day, but resist the urge to toast and salt them. You’ll just add unwanted fat and sodium.
To reduce swelling, eat cold-water ﬁsh, ﬂaxseeds (1 to 2 tablespoons daily, along with 10 ounces of water), and ﬂaxseed oil. These foods are high in essential fatty acids, which are known for their anti-inﬂammatory properties.
Drink green tea (decaffeinated) instead of coffee, as it promotes healthy detoxiﬁcation.
Take the aforementioned ﬂaxseeds daily, along with 10 ounces of water. Flaxseeds contain a phytonutrient known as lignans, which balance estrogen levels.
Drink a glass of clean water every two waking hours to keep ﬂuid moving through the urinary tract.
The following tests help assess possible reasons for prostatitis:
Urine culture—determine whether there is a fungal or bacterial growth
Vitamin and mineral analysis—blood
Digestive function and microbe/parasite/candida testing—stool analysis Food and environmental allergies/sensitivities—blood, electrodermal Toxic metals—hair or urine
Essential fatty acid balance—blood or urine
Several studies have demonstrated that rye pollen extract improves the symp- toms of chronic prostatitis, includ- ing prostate pain. One study pub- lished in the British Journal of Urology looked at the effects of a commercial rye pollen extract and ninety men with chronic prostatitis. These men were given 1 tablet three times daily for six months. Patients’ symptoms, as well
as laboratory tests and doctor evalua- tions after three and six months, found favorable results in
78 percent of the men; 36 percent were reported cured and 42 per- cent improved.
Food to Avoid
Eliminate all fats that are saturated, hydrogenated, or partially hydrogenated. These fats lead to inﬂammation and have been closely linked with several prostate disorders.
Sugar wreaks havoc on hormone levels and worsens inﬂammation. Radically restrict your consumption of reﬁned sugar, or, better yet, banish it from your diet altogether.
Processed food is full of chemicals that may cause or contribute to prostate prob- lems. Stay away from it.
Avoid alcohol and caffeine. They are irritants to the prostate gland.
The prostate glands are highly sensitive to environmental and dietary toxins. To ﬂush waste out of the prostate, do a one- to three-day juice fast. Focus on vegetable juices and broths—too much fruit juice will throw your hormone levels out of balance.
Super Seven Prescriptions—Prostatitis
Super Prescription #1 Rye pollen extract
Take as directed on the container (generally, 2 tablets twice daily). Several stud- ies have shown that this extract improves the symptoms of prostatitis.
Super Prescription #2 Quercitin
Take 500 mg twice daily. Quercitin is a type of ﬂavonoid that reduces inﬂammation.
Super Prescription #3 Echinacea (Echinacea purpurea) and goldenseal (Hydrastis canadensis)
Take 500 mg of the capsule form or 4 ml of the tincture four times daily. These herbs enhance immune function to combat infection.
Super Prescription #4 Oregano oil (Origanum vulgare)
Take 500 mg of the capsule form four times daily for acute prostatitis and twice daily for chronic problems. Oregano oil has powerful antifungal, antibacterial, and antiviral effects.
Super Prescription #5 Pygeum africanum
Take 160 to 200 mg daily of a product standardized to 13 percent total sterols. It has been shown to be helpful for this condition.
Super Prescription #6 Zinc
Take 100 mg daily for two months and then 50 mg as a maintenance dosage. Take
3 mg of copper, along with the zinc. Zinc improves immune function and reduces prostate congestion.
Super Prescription #7 Saw palmetto (Serenoa repens)
Take 320 mg daily of a product standardized to 80 to 95 percent fatty acids. Saw palmetto reduces the prostate enlargement that often underlies chronic prostatitis.
Thuja (Thuja occidentalis) is a great herb for nonbacterial prostatitis, since it has antiviral and antifungal properties. Take 10 drops three times daily of the herbal tinc- ture form.
Vitamin A enhances immune function. Take 25,000 to 50,000 IU daily for one week.
D-mannose is a special type of sugar that prevents bacteria from being able to attach to the urinary tract and the bladder wall. Take 500 mg four times daily.
Uva ursi can be helpful for bacterial prostatitis. Take a standardized capsule con- taining 250 mg of arbutin or 5 ml of the tincture four times daily.
A probiotic should be taken in the form of a product containing at least 4 billion organisms daily. It contains friendly bacteria that prevent the overgrowth of harmful bacteria and yeast, which contributes to prostatitis. It is especially important to take if you are using antibiotics. Take it at a separate time during the day, and continue use for two months.
Vitamin C enhances immune function, inhibits the growth of E. coli, and makes the urine more acidic so that bacteria cannot grow as easily. It also has anti-inﬂam- matory properties that may beneﬁt men with prostatitis. Take 1,000 mg four to ﬁve times daily.
Bromelain has a natural anti-inﬂammatory effect and has been shown to be help- ful for prostatitis when combined with vitamin C. Protease enzyme products also have this benef it. Take 500 mg three times daily between meals. Look for products standardized to 2,000 M.C.U. (milk-clotting units) per 1,000 mg or 1,200 G.D.U. (gelatin-dissolving units) per 1,000 mg.
Cranberries (Vaccinium macrocarpona) prevent bacteria from adhering to the blad- der wall. This plant is best used for the prevention of urinary tract infections but can be used as part of a comprehensive protocol for acute infection. Take 400 to 500 mg twice daily of cranberry extract capsules.
Apis Melliﬁca is for prostatitis accompanied by stinging or burning pain during uri- nation. Urinary retention may also be present.
Causticum is indicated when one loses urine from coughing or sneezing. There can be a pressure sensation extending from the prostate to the bladder. Causticum is also indicated when sexual pleasure during orgasm has diminished.
Chimaphilla Umbellate is a remedy that helps acute prostatitis and urinary reten- tion. There is often a sensation that one is sitting on a ball. The person may feel as if a ball is lodged in the pelvic ﬂoor or may experience pressure, swelling, and soreness that feel worse when sitting down.
uercitin has been shown to be helpful for nonbac- terial prostatitis, as well as for prostate pain (prostadynia). One study found that
500 mg taken twice daily for two weeks signiﬁcantly improved symptoms in 59 per- cent of men with chronic prostatitis. A separate double-blind study showed that quercitin supplemen- tation for one month improved symptoms in 67 percent of men with nonbacterial pro- statitis. The effects of quercitin may be improved with the supplementation of bromelain and papain, two protease enzymes.
Clematis is a speciﬁc remedy for swelling of the prostate that leads to slow urine passage or a dribbling of urine.
Lycopodium (Lycopodium clavatum) may be helpful for men who have a painful stream of urine. Symptoms are worse after urination. There can also be sexual dys- function, such as impotence. Men who need this remedy often have digestive prob- lems, such as gas and bloating. They tend to feel chilly and crave sweets.
Medorrhinum is for men with prostatitis that occurs after having gonorrhea or a new sexual partner.
Pulsatilla (Pulsatilla pratensis) is for prostate problems accompanied by bladder pain at the end of urination. Men who require this remedy tend to get warm easily and feel better in the fresh air.
Sabal Serrulata is a good remedy for urine retention, especially in elderly men. There may be a cold sensation in the prostate or the bladder. It’s useful for men with prostatitis who are prone to bladder infections.
Selenium is for an enlarged prostate and the involuntary dribbling of urine or pro- static ﬂuid. Symptoms feel worse after walking or urination. Impotence is another indi- cation for this remedy.
Staphysagria is for urinary retention and the chronic dribbling of urine. There can be a burning sensation in the urinary tract and the prostate. Men who require this rem- edy may have suppressed emotions, as well as impotence.
Sulphur is for prostatitis characterized by burning in the urethra or the prostate. Lower back pain is common. Symptoms are worse while standing and after sexual activity.
Thuja (Thuja occidentalis) is for prostatitis that develops after being treated for gonorrhea or other sexually transmitted diseases. Sometimes a forked stream of urine is seen.
See pages 668–675 for information about pressure points and administering treatment.
All the bladder points along the groin (Bladder 27–34) regulate the reproductive organs and increase circulation to the prostate. With regular work, they will help reduce inﬂammation, as well as lower back pain.
Acupuncture and Chinese herbal therapy offered by a qualiﬁed practitioner can be helpful for chronic prostatitis.
See pages 686–687 for information about reﬂexology areas and how to work them.
Work the areas corresponding to the prostate, the lower back/bladder, and the lymph/groin area.
Hot and cold hydrotherapy in the pelvic region stimulates circulation and reduces inﬂammation. First sit in a warm tub for two minutes, then sit in cool water for thirty seconds. Repeat three times.
Constitutional hydrotherapy is a good long-term treatment for this condition.
Bergamot and chamomile reduce inﬂammation. Add them to a bath or use them in a full-body massage.
If you have prostatitis, use a few drops of tea tree oil in a bath to ﬁght the infec- tion. This oil can sometimes be irritating, so start by adding just 2 or 3 drops under the tap. If you do not have a reaction, you can add a few more drops the next time around.
For a constant urge to empty the bladder, use sandalwood for its diuretic effect. A bath or a full-body massage is the best means of delivering this treatment.
General Stress-Reduction Therapies
Excess unresolved stress can alter your hormones, so keep tension in check by prac- ticing any of therapies in the Exercise and Stress Reduction chapter on a regular basis.
Bach Flower Remedies
Consult the chart on pages 648–650 to determine the best remedy for your particu- lar needs. Once you’ve chosen a remedy, place 10 drops of the liquid under your tongue. Hold the drops in place for thirty seconds and swallow. Use as often as needed.
If prostate problems make you feel ashamed, take Crab Apple for a more positive attitude.
Avoid bicycling, which puts too much pressure on the prostate.