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Beat BPH - What is BPH

BPH is Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia. It's the term used to describe a non-cancerous enlargement of the prostate. The enlarged prostate tends to excert pressure on the uretha, making it difficult to urinate. As men age, the tissue of the prostate grows and changes. Men over 40 may begin to experience the symptoms of an enlarged prostate and not recognize why these changes are happening, or that they're treatable. The cause of BPH is not known, although there are possible links to high-fat diets, family history and hormones. BPH is not cancer!

Here's how it works/What's Inside:

BETA SITOSTEROL (Glycine max seed) extracts that provide a mixture of phytosterols (marketed as beta-sitosterol) are often included in natural therapies for urinary symptoms related to BPH. In a six-month study of 200 men with symptomatic BPH, 60 mg/d of a beta-sitosterol preparation improved symptom scores, increased peak urinary flow, and decreased post-void residual urine volume compared to placebo. A follow-up study reported that these improvements were maintained for up to 18 months in the 38 participants who continued beta-sitosterol treatment. Similarly, in a six-month study of 177 men with symptomatic BPH, 130 mg/d of a different beta-sitosterol preparation improved urinary symptom scores, increased peak urinary flow, and decreased post-void residual urine volume compared to placebo. A systematic review that combined the results of these and two other controlled clinical trials found that beta-sitosterol extracts increased peak urinary flow by an average of 3.9 ml/second and decreased post-void residual volume by an average of 29 ml.

SAW PALMETTO (Serenoa repens) is a palm like plant with berries that were a staple food and medicine for the Native Americans of the southeastern United States. In the early 1900s, men used the berries to treat urinary tract problems, and even to increase sperm production and boost libido. Today, the primary use of Saw Palmetto is to treat benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), a non-cancerous enlargement of the prostate gland, but it also contains plant-based phytosterols including β Sitosterol and Stigmasterol which may be effective for BPH. Researchers think that Saw Palmetto may affect the level of testosterone in the body, and perhaps reduce the amount of an enzyme that promotes the growth of prostate cells. Recent research shows that Saw Palmetto extract may reduce symptoms of BPH. An analysis of 2,939 men with symptomatic BPH found that those taking Saw Palmetto extract reported greater improvement of urinary tract symptoms and urinary flow measures compared to control subjects. The experimental group also saw a decrease in episodes of nocturia (nighttime urination) and an improvement in peak urinary flow.

Cholesterol is vital to human health and well being. It plays an important role in the structure, fluidity and permeability of the cell membrane, and helps synthesize vitamin D and various hormones. Two types of cholesterol exist: good and bad. 'Good' cholesterol is found in blood particles called high density lipoprotein (HDL); it helps prevent the narrowing of artery walls by removing and transporting any excess cholesterol to the liver for excretion. 'Bad' cholesterol is found in low density lipoprotein (LDL) particles. LDL carries the cholesterol from the liver through the entire body and leaves behind any excess on the walls of the arteries. Consequently, 'bad' LDL cholesterol can lead to cardiovascular disease, increasing the risk of heart attacks, strokes, and the necessity for heart bypass surgery. The total cholesterol level represents the amount of both HDL and LDL cholesterol. However, the total cholesterol / HDL cholesterol ratio is more indicative of cardiovascular disease.

Cholesterol is required to build and maintain membranes; it modulates membrane fluidity over the range of physiological temperatures. Through the interaction with the phospholipid fatty-acid chains, cholesterol increases membrane packing, which reduces membrane fluidity. Within the cell membrane, cholesterol also functions in intracellular transport, cell signaling and nerve conduction. Recent studies show that cholesterol is also implicated in cell signaling processes, assisting in the formation of lipid rafts in the plasma membrane. Within cells, cholesterol is the precursor molecule in several biochemical pathways. In the liver, cholesterol is converted to bile, which is then stored in the gallbladder. Bile contains bile salts, which solubilize fats in the digestive tract and aid in the intestinal absorption of fat molecules as well as the fat-soluble vitamins, A, D, E, and K. Cholesterol is an important precursor molecule for the synthesis of vitamin D and the steroid hormones, including the adrenal gland hormones cortisol and aldosterone, as well as the sex hormones progesterone, estrogens, testosterone and their derivatives.

According to the lipid hypothesis, abnormal cholesterol levels (hypercholesterolemia) — or, more properly, higher concentrations of LDL particles and lower concentrations of functional HDL particles are strongly associated with cardiovascular disease because these promote atheroma development in arteries (atherosclerosis). This disease process leads to myocardial infarction (heart attack), stroke, and peripheral vascular disease. Since higher blood LDL, especially higher LDL particle concentrations and smaller LDL particle size, contribute to this process more than the cholesterol content of the HDL particles, LDL particles are often termed "bad cholesterol" because they have been linked to atheroma formation. On the other hand, high concentrations of functional HDL, which can remove cholesterol from cells and atheroma, offer protection and are sometimes referred to as "good cholesterol". These balances are mostly genetically determined, but can be changed by body build, medications, food choices, and other factors. Resistin, a protein secreted by fat tissue, has been shown to increase the production of LDL in human liver cells and also degrades LDL receptors in the liver. As a result, the liver is less able to clear cholesterol from the bloodstream. Resistin accelerates the accumulation of LDL in arteries, increasing the risk of heart disease. Resistin also adversely impacts the effects of statins, the main cholesterol-reducing drug used in the treatment and prevention of cardiovascular disease.

Conditions with elevated concentrations of oxidized LDL particles, especially "small dense LDL" (sdLDL) particles, are associated with atheroma formation in the walls of arteries, a condition known as atherosclerosis, which is the principal cause of coronary heart disease and other forms of cardiovascular disease. In contrast, HDL particles (especially large HDL) have been identified as a mechanism by which cholesterol and inflammatory mediators can be removed from atheroma. Increased concentrations of HDL correlate with lower rates of atheroma progressions and even regression. A 2007 study pooling data on almost 900,000 subjects in 61 cohorts demonstrated that blood total cholesterol levels have an exponential effect on cardiovascular and total mortality, with the association more pronounced in younger subjects. Still, because cardiovascular disease is relatively rare in the younger population, the impact of high cholesterol on health is still larger in older people.

Elevated levels of the lipoprotein fractions, LDL, IDL and VLDL are regarded as atherogenic (prone to cause atherosclerosis). Levels of these fractions, rather than the total cholesterol level, correlate with the extent and progress of atherosclerosis. Conversely, the total cholesterol can be within normal limits, yet be made up primarily of small LDL and small HDL particles, under which conditions atheroma growth rates would still be high. Recently, a post hoc analysis of the IDEAL and the EPIC prospective studies found an association between high levels of HDL cholesterol (adjusted for apolipoprotein A-I and apolipoprotein B) and increased risk of cardiovascular disease, casting doubt on the cardioprotective role of "good cholesterol".

Elevated cholesterol levels are treated with a strict diet consisting of low saturated fat, trans fat-free, low cholesterol foods, often followed by one of various hypolipidemic agents, such as statins, fibrates, cholesterol absorption inhibitors, nicotinic acid derivatives or bile acid sequestrants. Extreme cases have previously been treated with partial ileal bypass surgery, which has now been superseded by medication.

Β-Sitosterol, Campesterol and Stigmasterol are substances found in plants. Chemists call them “plant sterol esters.” or Phytosterols. They are found in fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seed oils including Saw Palmetto (Serona Repens) and Soybeans (Glycine max seed).

β SITOSTEROL is a plant substance similar to cholesterol. It might help reduce cholesterol levels by limiting the amount of cholesterol that is able to enter the body. It can also bind to the prostate to help reduce swelling (inflammation).

β Sitosterol is used for heart disease and high cholesterol. It is also thought to boost the immune system. Some men use β-Sitosterol for enlarged prostate (benign prostatic hyperplasia or BPH). Some women use it for symptoms of menopause.

In foods, β Sitosterol is added to some margarines that are designed for use as part of a cholesterol-lowering diet and for preventing heart disease. The Federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) allows manufacturers to claim that foods containing plant sterol esters such as β Sitosterol and Campesterol are for reducing the risk of coronary heart disease (CHD). This rule is based on the FDA’s conclusion that plant sterol esters may reduce the risk of CHD by lowering blood cholesterol levels.

STIGMASTEROL (also known as Wulzen anti-stiffness factor) is an un-saturated plant sterol occurring in the plant fats or oils of soybean, calabar bean and rape seed, and in a number of medicinal herbs It is one of a group of plant phytosterols, that include β Sitosterol, Campesterol and Ergosterol (provitamin D2 that are chemically similar to animal cholesterol.

CAMPESTEROL is a phytosterol whose chemical structure is similar to that of cholesterol. It is thought to have anti-inflammatory effects. It was demonstrated that Campesterol inhibits several pro-inflammatory and matrix degradation mediators typically involved in osteoarthritis induced cartilage degradation.

It was first shown in the 1950s that plant sterols are beneficial in lowering LDLs and cholesterol. It is thought that the Campesterol molecules compete with cholesterol and thus reduces the absorption of cholesterol in the human intestine. Plant sterols may also act directly on intestinal cells and affect transporter proteins.

Vitex introduces Prostate 2x, an advanced formula to manage the symptoms of both BPH and high cholesterol in one formula.

Most men who suffer from BPH also have elevated cholesterol and the combination of β Sitosterol extract and Saw Palmetto extract have the unique properties of providing clinically effect relief for both conditions at the same time.

Most dietary substances such as enzymes, polyphenols, amino sugars and plant sterols such as β sitosterol are severely altered by stomach acids as part of the digestive process and very little of the original active substance makes its way to the small intestine for absorption.

The new DRcaps overcome this problem by delivering the active compounds directly to the small intestine for maximum bioavailabity.

Reference Links

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases - Great info from the US Department of Health and Human Services

Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia - Info and causes from Wikipedia

BPH Alternative Treatment - Naturopathic Considerations for BPH

Prostate Enlargement - WebMD BPH Health Center

Prostate.net - Info on Healthy Living for Men

Beta Sitosterol Plant Extract - From HealthLinkBC