Men seem especially prone to accidents, or unintentional injuries. This is the third leading cause of death among men. It’s an issue for men that encompasses a variety of factors, including car accidents, falls, drug overdoses, safety problems at home and at the workplace and violence.
Problems with the prostate, a gland located below the bladder in men that makes semen, can also occur. Prostatitis (inflammation of the prostate), an enlarged prostate and prostate cancer are the three main problems that men can experience related to the prostate gland. Men can also experience sexual problems such as erectile dysfunction or low testosterone. Both men and women can become infected with HIV and develop AIDS, but gay men and black men have the highest rates of the disease.
Let’s take a look at prostate problems as it related to diet.
The prostate gland helps make semen, the fluid that contains sperm. Problems like an enlarged prostate, prostate cancer and prostatitis, or inflammation of the prostate, are common health problems for men as they grow older.
One way that diet can affect the risk of prostate problems is through obesity. Several studies have shown that being obese increases the risk of prostate cancer and other prostate problems.
Other studies have shown specific types of food to influence the overall risk for prostate cancer and other problems. For example, some research has shown that men who eat a lot of red meat and fatty dairy products, and not a lot of fruits and vegetables, increase their risk of getting prostate cancer. High calcium intake may also enhance risk, though it’s important to note that calcium has other health benefits for the body.
What to Eat and What to Avoid
Eating for a healthy prostate is like maintaining a healthy diet overall. The focus should be on a variety of healthy foods, with an emphasis on fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean sources of protein.
Some studies have shown that lycopene, a carotenoid found in fruits and vegetables like tomatoes, apricots and watermelon, may help lower the risk of several cancers, including prostate cancer. Lycopene is easiest for the body to process when consumed through processed tomato products like tomato paste and puree.
Unsaturated fats, such as those found in fish, nuts, olives and vegetable oils, should be emphasized over red meat. And it may also help to load up on spices that fight inflammation, like ginger, cinnamon and garlic.