Natural ‘cures’ for prostate cancer, enlargement identified
Scientists have identified and validated natural methods of effectively treating and managing prostate disorders including enlargement and cancer. CHUKWUMA MUANYA writes.
In the body of the average male the prostate is a ticking time bomb. The organ increases in size as men age. Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia is the scientific term. An enlarged prostate is in itself harmless, although doctors believe that an enlarged prostate increases the risk of prostate cancer. But because an enlarged prostate makes urination more difficult it is a problem for men.
But researchers have come up with several natural solutions.
Running reduces prostate cancer risk, prevents enlarged prostate
According to an article posted on Web MD, men who exercise for at least two hours a week reduced their risk of death from prostate cancer. The findings come from a joint study conducted by researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health and the University of California-San Francisco, United States. The researchers studied the records of nearly 3,000 men who had been diagnosed with non-metastatic prostate cancer for a period of over 18 years.
As part of the study, the men recorded the time they spent exercising during the week. Included in the annotated exercise were disciplines such as running, swimming, bicycling, and even outdoor work.
Most important to runners is that men who walked at a “normal to brisk pace” for 90 minutes during the week had a 46 per cent lower risk of dying from any cause.
“Our results suggest that men can reduce their risk of prostate cancer progression after a diagnosis of prostate cancer by adding physical activity to their daily routine,” wrote Stacey Kenfield, the study’s author.
Another study published in the journal Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise (MSSE) found that men who ran faster than 4.5 meters per second had a 32 percent less risk of an enlarged prostate than the men who ran less than three meters per second.
The men in the group who trained the longest had a 33 percent less risk of an enlarged prostate than the men who trained the least number of hours.
The researchers concluded: “Our results add to the accumulating evidence that important health benefits accrue at greater exercise doses and greater exercise intensities than currently recommended.”
Nigerian foodstuffs stop prostate cancer
Nigerian researchers have also identified foodstuffs with prostate cancer chemo-preventive polyphenols. The study was published in Infectious Agent Cancer by Sunday Eneojo.
The study noted: “Dietary polyphenols are antioxidants that can scavenge biological free radicals, and chemoprevent diseases with biological oxidation as their main etiological factor. In this paper, we review our laboratory data vis-ὰ-vis available literature on prostate cancer chemo-preventive substances in Nigerian foodstuffs.
Dacryodes edulis fruit (local pear), Moringa oleifera and Syzygium aromaticum (cloves) contained prostate active polyphenols like ellagic acid, gallate, methylgallate, catechol, kaempferol quercetin and their derivatives.
In addition, tomatoes (Lycopersicon esculentum) which contains the powerful antioxidant and anti-prostate cancer agent, lycopene; cabbage (Brassica oleracea) containing indole-3-carbinol; citrus fruits containing pectin; Soursop (Annona muricata) containing annonaceous acetogenins; soya beans (Glycine max) containing isoflavones; chili pepper (Capsicum annuum) containing capsaicin, and green tea (Camellia sinensis) containing (-) epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), (-) epicatechin, (-) epicatechin-3-gallate and (-) epigallocatechin -3-gallate which are widely reported to posses prostate cancer chemopreventive compounds are also grown in Nigeria and other African countries.
Scent leaf inhibits prostate cancer growth
Researchers have also shown the efficacy scent leaf (Ocimum gratissimum) in stopping prostate cancer. The study, titled “Fractionated Ocimum gratissimum Leaf Extract Inhibit Prostate Cancer (PC3·AR) Cells Growth by Reducing Androgen Receptor and Survivin Levels,” was published in the Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved.
In this study, the anti-proliferative activity of the organic solvent-soluble and aqueous extracts of Ocimum gratissimum leaf against the prostate cancer cells PC3·AR were evaluated by their inhibitory effects on the Androgen Receptor (AR) and Survivin protein. Two organic solvent-soluble extracts P2 and P3–2, and a water- soluble extract, PS/PT1, were found to reduce AR and Survivin levels in a time-dependent manner.
In addition, extract PS/PT1, also exhibited the inhibitory activity in a dose-dependent manner. This is the first time that the inhibitory effects of O. gratissimum extracts have been evaluated on the Androgen Receptor (AR) and Survivin protein. The results encouraged the further studies of O. gratissimum as a potential treatment of prostate cancer.
Africa pepper stops prostate cancer
Researchers have confirmed the anti-proliferative effects of ethanolic extract of African pepper (Xylopia aethiopica) fruits on breast and prostate cancer cells. This can be seen from the inhibition of cell growth by this extract thus highlighting its potential as a therapy against breast and prostate cancer.
The study published in July 15, 2016 edition of the journal Experimental and Molecular Therapeutics and Cancer Research is titled “Preliminary anti-proliferative effect of ethanolic extracts of Xylopia aethiopica on prostate and breast cancer cell lines.”
Commonly called African pepper or Guinea pepper, Xylopia aethiopica, belongs to the family Annonaceae. In Nigerian Arabic, it is called kyimba in, kumba in Arabic-Shuwa, kenya in Bokyi, akada in Degema, unie in Edo, ata in Efik, kimbaahre in Fula-Fulfulde, kimbaa in Hausa, ata in Ibibio, uda in Ibo, tsunfyanya in Nupe, kimbill in Tera, eeru in Yoruba.
Extracts of breadfruit provide novel treatment for prostate cancer
A composition of breadfruit (Artocarpus altilis), containing extracts of fruits, leaves, or stems, or fractions thereof as active ingredients has received patent for preventing or treating cancer.
Botanically called Artocarpus altilis, breadfruit is a species of flowering tree in the mulberry family Moraceae.
The African breadfruit is botanically called Treculia africana. It is a tropical tree crop also belonging to the taxonomic family Moraceae. It is also called wild jackfruit or African-boxwood. In Nigeria, it is called ukwa in Ibo. It is afon in Yoruba; ize in Benin, Jekri in Sobo; izea in Ijaw; and ediang in Efik.
The abstract of the Patent EP 2889038 A1 noted: “The present invention relates to a pharmaceutical composition for preventing and treating cancer which comprises the extracts of Artocarpus altilis fruits, leaves, or stems, or the fractions thereof as active ingredients. The extracts of Artocarpus altilis fruits, leaves, or stems, or the fractions thereof, according to the present invention, suppress the activity of signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT3) which plays an important role in the growth of a cancer cell line and in the immune function of the human body, and can thus be effectively used in the prevention and treatment of cancers such as colorectal cancer, stomach cancer, prostate cancer, breast cancer, renal cancer, liver cancer, brain tumor, lung cancer, uterine cancer, colorectal cancer, bladder cancer, or pancreatic cancer.”
The patent filled on July 26, 2013, was published on July 1, 2015.
The inventors are Byoung-Mog Kwon, Dong Cho Han, Joongku Lee, Yoon-jeong JEON, and Sang Ho Choi while the applicant is the Korea Research Institute of Bioscience and Biotechnology.
The patent is the brain child of a novel research by a team of researchers from National Biotechnology Development Agency (NABDA), Abuja; Korea Research Institute of Bioscience and Biotechnology (KRIBB), Daejeon, South Korea; Center for Biocomputing and Drug Development, Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba-Akoko; and the Institute for Advanced Medical Research and Training, College of Medicine, University of Ibadan, Oyo State.
Pygeum africanum and Urtica dioica improve urinary function in enlarged prostate
Scientists have also identified more natural recipes for ameliorating mild to moderate lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) in men with enlarged prostate.
Top on the list are plant extracts of Pygeum africanum and Urtica dioica.
Pygeum africanum (African plum tree or bitter almond) is called emi or olowomefa in Yoruba, ka’danya in Hausa and osisi in Ibo.
Commonly called nettle, big string nettle, common nettle, stinging nettle, Urtica dioica is a leafy plant found in most parts of Nigeria, but ubiquitous in the Southern parts. The Igbos call it agbara or akuwa; and it is named osokporode in Urhobo while to the Yorubas, it is ewe esinsin or esisi.
Pygeum africanum has been shown to be beneficial in treating BPH. Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), also known as benign prostatic hypertrophy, is a noncancerous enlargement of the prostate gland. It is especially helpful in increasing urinary function, often limited due to enlarged prostate. Historically, the bark was powdered and used to make a tea, which was taken by mouth for urinary problems.