Men’s Health Ask Me Archives


Question:
I have a BPH condition. I am using Dr Whitaker’s prostate formula and just heard about beta- sitosterol. Proscar or flow max have side effects. I am taking a good multi -vitamin as well. What’s your advice?

Answer:
I don’t know what is inside Dr Whitaker’s prostate formula. Basically, you need to consider saw palmetto 320 mg in standardized extract. The active ingredient in it is beta sitosterol. Also, natural progesterone for men at 6 mg a day by cream should be considered as progesterone opposes estrogen, More and more evidence are pointing to estrogen dominance as the causative factor in BPH and prostate cancer. Zinc also helps at about 50 mg a day.


Question:
I’ve seen ads for a product, Beta Prostate, in which it is claimed to be much more powerful (and much more effective) than Saw Palmetto. It contains 300 mg or Beta Sitosterol, 15 mg zinc and 100 mcg of Selenium. Have you done any research on this product?
I’m either going to order and try it, or re-start taking Solgar (brand) Saw Palmetto again, which I believe helped my symptoms in the past.

Answer:
As far as prostate is concern, the key ingredients include: saw palmetto in standardized extract, stinging nettles, zinc, and natural progesterone. All of these go to either stopping the testosterone to DHT pathway or testosterone to estrogen pathway. The end result is the same – to increase testosterone level. Selenium 100 mcg is good, and so is lycopene etc. I think it is important to focus on the effective ingredients and not so much on the brand name to avoid being swayed by marketing materials. You can stay with what works in the past, and if needed, add the zinc and selenium to your program. 6 mg of topical natural progesteone can be applied and this is on the cutting edge of scientific research on prostate health, and in the next few years you will hear much more as research validate it. You may not need it now, but it will be interesting read for you. Read more here: Progesterone.
If your PSA is high, then there are other herbs such as wormwood that can bring it down. Lots of natural medicine is available. It all depends on what you are trying to accomplish.
Do also make sure you try to reduce your estrogen load as much as possible. This will enhance your prostate health. You may think that estrogen is a female problem, but the prostate in male is the equivalent to the uterus in the female. There is little doubt that prostate problem in men is highly related to excessive estrogen found in the environement today. Read more here: Estrogen Dominance


Question:
I am a 45 year old female who has been experiencing low libido for the past few years. I have read about the Dr. Bermans’ work and decided to have my testosterone level checked. My total testosterone level was less than 10. I am otherwise a very healthy woman of normal weight, who’s very fit, with no major health problems. My doctor is totally against prescribing ANY testosterone supplement for me. Can you recommend any natural and/or safer ways to increase my testosterone level?

Answer:
Testosterone replacement should not be taken lightly. At your age, there are other natural supplements that can boost libido. Since testosterone in the female is made at the adrenal glands, fortification of the adrenal glands will help testosterone secretion. DHEA and pregnenolone are of particular importance. Make sure you are not suffering from adrenal fatigue. Also with your age and approaching menopause, some hormonal imbalance is to be expected and this can be overcome with natural progesterone and estriol, for example. The combinations are countless, depending on your condition. Make sure you are not suffering from estrogen dominance which can lead to low testosterone also. The following two articles should be read by you: On estrogen dominance, see this: Estrogen Dominance
On adrenal fatigue, see this: Adrenal Fatigue


Question:
My partner’s father has recently had prostate cancer which is hopefully now under control through various treatments. It has been suggested that my partner who is aged 42 starts taking a supplement to prevent prostate cancer, is beta sitosterol a suitable supplement?

Answer:
Prostate health protection should start soon after age 35 as the chances of benign prostatic hypertropy increases by 1% per year. Men at age 50% has 50% chances of getting it. Beta sitosterol is one of the supplements, but generally not the acceptable first line defence which include saw palemetto, stinging nettles as you will find in this article: Prostate – Tiny But Troublesome


Question:
The book “Prescription for Herbal Healing” By Phyllis A. Balch, CNC ISBN 0-89529-869-4 on page 385 says “High amounts of beta sitosterol encourages growth of prostate cancer cells”
I have localized prostate cancer. I am presently taking 720mg of beta sitosterol per day along with standardized saw palmeto 960mg per day. My Urologist does not know what to tell me. Please advise me.

Answer:
I am not familiar with any study that supports what the book says. Beta-sitosterol blocks testosterone breakdown to DHT, resulting in more testosterone in the body. A low level of testosterone is thought to be the key to prostate cancer. This is in contrast to the thinking 20 years ago which is exactly the opposite. Some natural compounds have a paradoxical effect at high dose. Whether it is true in beta sitosterol I am not sure. You may also wish to pay attention to your estrogen/testosterone balance in your body. By reducing estrogen load (yes estrogen, and they are in man as well, though less than women), you will increase your testosterone level. Other considerations are zinc and lycopene. If you believe that increasing interstitual matrix will deter cancer growth, then vitamin C can be considered as well. I don’t want to confuse you, but as you can see, there are multiple pathways to increase testosterone and reduce cancer growth. You may have heard about PC-specs, an herb that works, but the FDA has banned it. Most importantly, check your PSA level frequently.