Category Archives: prostate health

Are there alternatives to Flomax?

This post is primarily for senior guys, folks who may be involved with senior guys, or middle aged guys who may want to peek into the not too distant future.

Medical News Today reported that for most, benign prostatic hyperplasia is a mild inconvenience that can be treated with a drug called Flomax. But Flomax does not work well for everyone. Some alternatives can help men with this condition relieve their symptoms and feel better.


Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) or an enlarged prostate can cause painful and frequent urination, bladder stones, and incontinence. According to one estimate, nearly 1 in 5 men between 55 and 74 experience this condition.

What is Flomax?

Flomax, the branded version of the drug tamsulosin, is often prescribed to relieve the symptoms of BPH. Flomax is one of a group of drugs called alpha-1 blockers that can help urine flow more easily.

Commonly known as alpha-blockers, these drugs change the behavior of the hormones adrenaline and noradrenaline. This can relax muscles in the urinary tract, making it easier to urinate.

Flomax is considered a selective alpha-blocker, which means it targets the urinary tract specifically and has less effect on other muscles.

In men with a moderately enlarged prostate who have no serious health issues, Flomax often works well. But for some, it causes unpleasant side effects. Common side effects of Flomax include:

low blood pressure
nasal congestion
swollen ankles
dry mouth
headaches and dizziness
problems with ejaculation

For some men, however, the cost is also a significant concern. Flomax can cost more than $200 per month and might not be entirely covered by insurance. Flomax may be no more effective than other alpha-blockers, but the manufacturing company spends more than $100 million marketing it to consumers, so it is often the only BPH drug many people know about. Continue reading


Filed under aging, BPH, Flomax, prostate health, successful aging

Is Exercise one way of beating prostate cancer?

A new study suggests that exercise may reduce Caucasian men’s risk of developing prostate cancer. And among Caucasian men who do have prostate cancer, exercise may reduce their risk of having more serious forms of the disease. Unfortunately, the benefits do not seem to apply to African-American men. The study is published early online in CANCER, a peer-reviewed journal of the American Cancer Society.

Blue man running

Silhouette of a man and skeleton running on motionblurred background

The Daily Mail reporting on this, said, “Just 5 hours a week can boost survival chances by a THIRD
•    Experts tracked 10,000 men with prostate cancer in the US for 10 years
•    Moderate activities like cycling made patients 34 per cent less likely to die
•    Regular walking can help ward off cancer but has no effect after diagnosis
•    Suggests treatment which includes exercise is key to beating the disease”

Previous research has linked exercise to a reduced risk of developing prostate cancer. Studies have also revealed that African-American men have an increased risk of developing prostate cancer and of dying from the disease compared with Caucasians. It is not clear if exercise as a function of race plays any role in these disparities. Continue reading


Filed under Exercise, prostate cancer, prostate health, Uncategorized

New Method for Prostate Cancer Detection Can Save Millions of Men Painful Examination

The use of the new method, which has been patented by TU/e, can avoid the need for biopsies to be taken from millions of men around the world. The procedure will no longer be necessary for a large part of the 70% of men from whom biopsies are currently taken unnecessarily.

Cooking with Kathy Man

A prostate image generated with the new technique. The red area indicates the tumor.

Each year prostate tissue samples are taken from over a million men – in most cases using 12 large biopsy needles – to check whether they have prostate cancer. This procedure, which was recently described by an American urology professor as ‘barbaric’1, shows that 70% of the subjects do not have cancer. A patient-friendly examination, which drastically reduces the need for biopsies has been developed at Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e), together with AMC Amsterdam.

Hundreds of thousands of men die each year from prostate cancer. The standard procedure used worldwide for prostate cancer examinations starts with measurement of the PSA (prostate specific antigen) value in the blood. If this is high, physicians will usually remove samples of prostate tissue through the anus at six to sixteen points for pathological examination. However, 70% of the subjects…

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You Are What You Eat: Low-fat Diet Changes Prostate Cancer Tissue

“These studies are showing that in men with prostate cancer, you really are what you eat,” Aronson said. “The studies suggest that by altering the diet, we may favorably affect the biology of prostate cancer.”

Cooking with Kathy Man

Men with prostate cancer who ate a low-fat diet and took fish oil supplements had lower levels of pro-inflammatory substances in their blood and a lower cell cycle progression score — a measure used to predict cancer recurrence — than men who ate a typical Western diet, UCLA researchers found.

The findings are important because lowering the cell cycle progression (CCP) score may help prevent prostate cancers from becoming more aggressive, said lead study author William Aronson, a clinical professor of urology at UCLA and chief of urologic oncology at the West Los Angeles Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

“We found that CCP scores were significantly lower in the prostate cancer of men who consumed the low-fat fish oil diet, as compared to men who followed a higher-fat Western diet,” Aronson said. “We also found that men on the low-fat fish oil diet had reduced blood levels of pro-inflammatory substances that…

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Filed under low fat diet, prostate cancer, prostate health

Chicken Avocado Sandwich – Mr. Lazy Cook

Having recently written about how good it is to eat avocados, it seems only right to give you an example. As a male senior citizen I was impressed at the food value of avocados, especially in terms of prostate health.  I plan to integrate them into my regular diet.

Herewith the first attempt. I have mentioned previously that I buy the rotisserie chicken at Costco often and that I don’t particularly like the white meat. Nonetheless, the chicken is comprised of a lot of white meat and I have to use it somehow. Up until now, I have been making a chicken rice soup with it that moistens up the dry white meat very nicely.

Now I am making a Chicken Avocado on Rye sammy that I like very much.

Here is the rye bread liberally covered with the avocado slices

Here is the rye bread liberally covered with the avocado slices

I take a couple of slices of rye bread and toast them up. For some reason rye bread adds a nice flavor dimension to sandwiches for me. Cut up about a quarter to a third of an avocado into thin slices and spread them on the bread. Slice up some chicken, mostly breast meat.

Here is one of the toast slices with the chunks of chicken on top

Here is one of the toast slices with the chunks of chicken on top

I have included two photos. The first shows how thick I spread on the avocado. The second is the chicken piled on top. I eat these open face because it seems easier to handle.

Here is the nutritional breakdown:

Calories      386
Fat               13.1 grams
Saturated fat 2.2 grams
Cholesterol  76.1 grams
Sodium      670 mg
Carbohydrates  34.9 grams
Fiber         3.4 grams
Protein    29.9 grams

While simple to create, I consider this to be a very satisfying sandwich. Not a bad total calories and you get some worthwhile nutrition out of it. Try it out and let me know what you think. Clearly, the fat content of the avocado is not onerous. Don’t forget this is 13.1 grams of good fat that raises your HDL (good cholesterol) and lowers your LDL (bad cholesterol). If this has piqued your appetite for more info on good fats, check out Why should I try coconut oil? It might open your mind as well as your arteries.


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Filed under avocados, health, healthy eating, prostate health, Weight

10 Diet and Exercise Tips for Prostate Health From Harvard Medical School

“What can I eat to reduce my risk of developing prostate cancer?” This is one of the most common questions physicians hear from men concerned about prostate health,” according to the Harvard Medical School Health Bulletin.

“Undoubtedly, many hope that their doctor will rattle off a list of foods guaranteed to shield them from disease. Although some foods have been linked with reduced risk of prostate cancer, proof that they really work is lacking, at least for now.”

Aim for a healthy eating pattern
Harvard offers good common sense suggestions, many of which you can find on our blog pages.
“Instead of focusing on specific foods, dietitians, physicians, and researchers tout an overall pattern of healthy eating — and healthy eating is easier than you might think. In a nutshell, here’s what experts recommend:

1. Eat at least five servings of fruits and vegetables every day. Go for those with deep, bright color.
2. Choose whole-grain bread instead of white bread, and choose whole-grain pasta and cereals.
3. Limit your consumption of red meat, including beef, pork, lamb, and goat, and processed meats, such as bologna and hot dogs. Fish, skinless poultry, beans, and eggs are healthier sources of protein.
4. Choose healthful fats, such as olive oil, nuts (almonds, walnuts, pecans), and avocados. Limit saturated fats from dairy and other animal products. Avoid partially hydrogenated fats (trans fats), which are in many fast foods and packaged foods.
5. Avoid sugar-sweetened drinks, such as sodas and many fruit juices. Eat sweets as an occasional treat.
6. Cut down on salt. Choose foods low in sodium by reading and comparing food labels. Limit the use of canned, processed, and frozen foods.
7. Watch portion sizes. Eat slowly, and stop eating when you are full.”
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