|Traditional Chinese Medicine associates hyperplasia of the prostate with damp heat and kidney deficiency. After the age of 40, men’s vital energy in the kidney system decreases, resulting in a disturbance of the sex hormones. Sexual energy decreases, affecting circulation in this area and the function of the prostate. To compensate for the decline of prostate function, men in China have historically used acupuncture treatments to improve the circulation and energy in the prostate.
The American Cancer Society classifies prostate cancer as the most common form of cancer among U.S. men. If you are a man over the age of 40 and prostate cancer runs in your family, it is advisable to monitor your Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) levels. A PSA blood test measures the level of a protein released by prostate cells which can reveal prostate growth and sometimes cancer. The main symptoms of an enlarged prostate are weak urine flow, straining to urinate, and the feeling of incomplete bladder emptying.
Chinese herbal therapy and acupuncture can help normalize PSA levels. Many times, two traditional Chinese herbal formulas are prescribed with modifications: Ba Zheng San for damp-heat patterns and Ji Sheng Shen Qi Wan for kidney deficiency patterns. Kidney essence revitalizes the prostate so that it becomes capable of self-regulating toward normal functioning.
To help nourish the prostate, Chinese medicine encourages men to eat more nuts, seeds, pumpkin, mushrooms and berries. Managing stress, regular exercise and massaging the prostate are also vital for maintaining prostate health. Besides Chinese and Western herbs such as saw palmetto, many delicious foods help maintain a healthy prostate because they contain lycopene, a prostate protective antioxidant. These foods include watermelon, pink grapefruit, guava, papaya, apricot and cooked tomatoes.