When I thought about the column topic for this men’s health issue, I remembered previously preaching about getting men out of the house and to the doctor. While I still very much hope that men are taking care of themselves so they can stick around longer, this time I would like to share some of the holistic wonders out there—specifically for men. In addition to healthy food options, there are a number of male-specific supplements available that, if taken regularly, can help prevent illness and promote a better quality of life.
According to the National Library of Medicine, one in five men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer. About 250,000 men are diagnosed every year in the U.S., and about 35,000 die from it. I read these statistics and I just can’t believe they are true—but they are.
Susan Smith Jones, a renowned holistic nutritionist, talks about five super foods that can prevent prostate cancer: sprouts, greens, tomatoes, nuts, seeds and green tea. All of these ingredients are super easy to incorporate into your daily menu.
When thinking about “greens,” you can reach for almost any of them. Kale, mustard greens, broccoli, romaine lettuce and brussels sprouts are all worthy options.
Additionally, nuts and seeds can be a great topping on most dishes, but remember that the whole nut or seed is better than the buttered version. Even easier, green tea is the most super of superfoods! While some say there is not enough research to support that green tea can help prevent or treat cancer, China and Japan have both used medicinal green tea for thousands of years.
In terms of supplements, saw palmetto extract has long been advertised for men to aid in increasing libido but it actually has been used to treat a wide range of medical conditions, including enlarged prostates.
When it comes to multivitamins, a Physicians’ Health Study found that men who took a daily multivitamin showed a significant reduction of total cancer.
While I am not always a big proponent of multivitamins, I am elated to hear these results. Personally, I prefer taking supplements individually and only for a specific period of time before I change it up. But if you don’t want to deal with figuring out which supplements to take and when, find a good daily multivitamin.
When I say “good,” I’m stressing that generic pharmacy brands aren’t always best. These brands tend to contain sand or other fillers and may not hit high daily doses. They also tend to contain a heavy gelatin coating that may not break down in the body.
Avoid chain stores and opt for a local vitamin establishment instead. Ask for a recommendation from the staff. I owned a health food store for a few years with my mom, and we immersed ourselves in providing the best information for our clients.
And, as always, be sure to check with your medical team before establishing your new supplement routine.
In closing, I leave you with a quote from Scottish essayist, historian and philosopher Thomas Carlyle: “Ill health of body or of mind is defeat. Health alone is victory. Let all men, if they can manage it, contrive to be healthy!”
Stay well and enlightened until next time!