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Lifestyle to mitigate prostatitis symptoms

Benign prostatic hyperplasia versus prostatitis.

Although, benign prostatic hyperplasia and prostatitis, both reveal themselves in the background of an enlarged prostatic gland these two conditions must be distinguished. As it was shown first by Gat, Y et al. in 2008 and have been proven in numerous clinical studies on thousands of real patients since then, BPH occurs as a result of the failure of the one-way valves in the internal spermatic veins. This, in turn, leads to stagnation of venous blood, first in the longer left side and later in the right side spermatic vein, well known as varicocele.

Varicocele blocks free testosterone produced in the testes from entering the system circulation and dilution and gets through the “back door” directly into a prostate. The concentration of the free testosterone in the prostate raises somewhat 100 times its content in the peripheral blood and stimulates proliferation and growth of the prostate cells. As a result of these interconnected processes prostate gland grows leading to BPH. BPH, as well as varicocele, is an age-dependent process.

Prostatitis is an inflammation of the prostate gland caused by bacterial (about 5% of cases) or any other kinds of irritants. This is a commonly accepted position of the conventional medicine, though there is another viewpoint considering chronic pelvic pain as a result of chronically contracted pelvic floor muscles and have nothing to do with the prostate, bladder, uterine or other organ pathology.

Developed at Stanford University the Wise Anderson Protocol focuses on training patients to relax the spastic muscles of the pelvic floor, as well as the arousal of the nervous system that feeds the pain. In the results of the clinic, published in 2015 one third of their patients discontinued all medication.

As I mentioned in one of the previous posts, the larger prostate or more progressed BPH doesn’t always correlate with the severity of prostatitis symptoms. Some men with barely enlarged prostates have hard symptoms and blockage, while others with a large prostate almost have no blockage or prostatitis signs.

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Now when we separated BPH from prostatitis, we have a clear idea of how they are connected and how they must be treated to get the desired result. Notice, that all officially accepted methods of prostatitis treatments come down to the treatment of BPH, while the traditional or folk methods treat prostatitis itself primarily.

I noticed there is a contradictory data about man’s lifestyle and prostatitis in the available literature. Let’s consider such factors as alcohol consumption, smoking, exposure to the cold, biking, obesity, specific food intake, and physical activity in terms of their role in development of prostatitis.

Alcohol consumption and prostatitis.

Alcohol consumption is reckoned one of the factors aggravating the symptoms of prostatitis, despite numerous evidence-based studies found a strong negative correlation between alcohol intake and obstructive prostate pathology. 

wine drinkers
Photo by Willian West on Unsplash

In the cohort of 6581 men investigated by Dr. Po‐Huang Chyou et al.,  the relative risk to develop BPH was much less for men drinking at least 25 oz of alcohol/month compared with nondrinkers. And what was interesting, this negative association was present for mild drinks like beer, wine, and sake, but not for spirits. In the same study, the presence of prostatitis symptoms positively related to increased risk of obstructive uropathy.

In the three independent studies of four, where prostatitis symptoms were assessed as a primary result, alcohol consumption significantly increased the probability of lower urinary tract symptoms. So alcohol effects BPH and prostatitis symptoms differently.

The ambient temperature and prostatitis.

Even though the ambient temperature cannot be considered as a lifestyle factor, I would strongly recommend not to neglect it. The prolonged exposure to the low temperature, hypothermia was shown to trigger worsening chronic pelvic pain syndrome. A survey showed that in the north countries prostatitis is a more common ailment than in a warm climate. Avoid sitting on cold surfaces and swimming if the water is not pretty warm.

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Physical activity and prostatitis.

Physical activity always is opposed to the sedentary lifestyle, but there must be a golden mean. Intensive physical activity, no matter in the gym or on the work can provoke the symptoms, particularly if they are repeated day after day. If you are in the gym, avoid those exercises that have direct pressure on the abdomen. If you are on the construction site or landscaping, try to intermingle hard work with the pauses of relaxed work.

Lifestyle to mitigate prostatitis symptoms
A man sitting in the asian pose.

I would have considered the technological revolution which led to the sedentary lifestyle, the main cause of all diseases of the urinary and genital organs. In the sitting position, especially when we sit on the chair for a long time the weight of our body pressures on the pelvic area and violates the natural circulation of blood and other body fluids here causing their stagnation. Sitting on the floor, in what position the pressure of body weight falls only on the upper thighs and the whole groin area is open – is a traditional practice in Asian countries. I believe that along with a warm climate this habit determines why in those countries prostatitis is less prevalent than in North America. 

No wonder that bikers experience prostatitis more often than the other categories of men. If you love biking, try to pick up a comfortable seat exerting minimum pressure on the groin area and do not forget to put a worm cover on the seat in the winter time to avoid contact with the cold surface. 

Diet, cigaret smoking, and prostatitis.

Cigarette smoking as has been shown by Po‐Huang Chyou et al. does not affect the expression of prostatitis symptoms. The diet with an increased intake of beef, protein, and total energy had a weak association with BPH. However, fat intake showed no correlation with BPH.

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Obesity hardly can be considered a lifestyle, rather it is a health condition caused by the interaction of multiple constituents such as genetics, a high energy diet, hypodynamic lifestyle, and consumption of junk food. As a result, men with obesity have an altered hormonal status and overall cell metabolism, which make them more prone to develop BPH.

Conclusion

The most important conclusions from the relative independence of prostatitis and BPH are:

  1. BPH makes prostate vulnerable to inflammation but not necessarily cause prostatitis. So if we do not want to have any issue with our prostate, we have to prevent BPH at the very origin. We can prevent BPH only if we know the exact mechanism of its occurrence.
  2. Any treatment of BPH, no matter, chemical or surgical, except prostatectomy, not necessarily result in healing of prostatitis.
  3. We really can cure prostatitis not caring for the enlarged prostate, since we just relieve the inflammation symptoms of the illness.

Literature

Po‐Huang Chyou et al. A prospective study of alcohol, diet, and other lifestyle factors in relation to obstructive uropathy The Prostate 1993 V. 22, N 3 P: 253-264

Suzuki S et al. Intakes of energy and macronutrients and the risk of benign prostatic hyperplasia. Am J Clin Nutr. 2002 Apr;75(4):689-97.

Parsons JK, Im R. Alcohol consumption is associated with a decreased risk of benign prostatic hyperplasia. J Urol. 2009 Oct;182(4):1463-8.

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