Antioxidant supplements have gained a lot of attention.
People choose to take an antioxidant supplement and make use of its many health benefits.
An antioxidant can, in fact, offer multiple beneficial properties for public health.
But, what about the prostate? Can the antioxidant properties live up to the hype? We compiled the most recent reviews on dietary antioxidants and their health benefits for the prostate gland.
- Fruits and veggies are superb antioxidant sources. There is an ample amount of research that urges people to focus on healthy eating and manage their antioxidant intake.
- A supplement rich in antioxidants could help prevent chronic disease. Like cataracts, heart disease, and cancer.
- There are no negative reports about the safety of antioxidant-rich foods. But, a supplement taken in very high doses could affect your health. Supplementing with abnormally high vitamin E doses can spike the risk of prostate cancer and stroke.
- Talk to a healthcare expert before you start using complementary medicine. That way you can ensure safe and coordinated care.
What Are Antioxidants?
An antioxidant is a natural or manufactured substance with the potential to postpone or prevent certain types of cell damage. An antioxidant is a small organic molecule. Organic antioxidants can be either water-soluble or lipid-soluble.
A water-soluble antioxidant is a urate, ascorbate, and glutathione. Whereas a typical example of a lipid-soluble antioxidant is vitamin E. Other examples of antioxidants include vitamins C, vitamins A, beta-carotene, lutein, lycopene, etc.
For men who eat plenty of fruits and veggies in their diet, their bodies may already have a sufficient amount of antioxidants. But, when additional antioxidant intake is necessary, that’s where antioxidant supplements can come in handy.
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Why Antioxidants Are Important for Prostate Health?
Prostate cancer is a malignant disease that can impact any section of the prostate. Every year, roughly 1.6 million men are diagnosed with prostate cancer. Current trends suggest that lifestyle factors may have some role to play in prostate cancer incidence and prostate cancer risk.
There is a lot to unpack regarding antioxidants and cancer risk. The question is, how can an antioxidant help? What are the antioxidants benefits that can promote better prostate health? Here is what research has to say.
Prevents oxidation of cell molecules
The body can make some antioxidants on its own. At times, however, the body creates more free radicals than the system can handle. So, an external intake of antioxidants becomes the go-to choice. People should prioritize a healthy diet with vitamins, like vitamin C, vitamin E, etc. Or any other vitamin that they lack. Like vitamin D, for instance.
An antioxidant is a compound that prevents the oxidation of molecules in a cell. Oxidation is a chemical reaction capable of creating free radicals. Thus, it can lead to a chain reaction, which could damage the cells of living organisms.
An antioxidant like vitamin C or vitamin E could end these chain reactions. With antioxidant therapy, patients can reduce the extent of damage from an ischemic stroke. Whereas dietary antioxidants can establish a better balance between their antioxidant status and free radicals.
Besides, cancer induces oxidative stress. As the disease progresses, it changes over time, and the antioxidant status can differ from person to person.
Reduces oxidative stress
Oxidative stress plays a key role in the development of various chronic ailments.
It is linked with symptoms of urinary bladder dysfunction. A typical example of bladder dysfunction is urinary incontinence. This is the leakage of urine that people can’t control. Symptoms such as these can happen in men with BPH (benign prostatic hyperplasia).
The ailment can affect their urine flow, lead to terminal dribbling, hesitancy, or inability to empty the bladder completely. According to the National Institute of Health, an antioxidant can help curb oxidative stress, odds of cardiovascular disease, and risk of cancer. This could make them viable dietary supplements.
Further cancer research supports these claims. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant found in veggies and fruit. This vitamin can prevent oxidative damage, recycle vitamin E, and hamper the viability and growth of prostate cancer cells.
Cancer research indicates that this vitamin can protect the system against a range of carcinomas. But, more research is necessary to evaluate the vitamin’s full potential and possible antioxidants benefits.
Antioxidants like polyphenols found in green tea may also be of use. They can neutralize free radicals and possibly even prevent the damage they cause. At least to a certain extent.
The tea has many health benefits and powerful antioxidant activity. The antioxidant effect of polyphenols seems to be bigger than the one in vitamin C. In an average cup of green tea, you are getting anywhere between 50 to 150 mg of antioxidants (polyphenols).
Helps prostate cancer patients
Then there is lycopene, a tetraterpene compound present in tomatoes and tomato-based products. It is seen as a very strong antioxidant and a non-pro-vitamin A carotenoid.
2020 reports show that this antioxidant is a profound, natural, and effective product. It suppresses prostate cancer proliferation and progression.
The antioxidant induces apoptosis of prostate cancer cells. The results of the study stated that men with a recently diagnosed prostate carcinoma who took lycopene two times per day for three weeks had a decrease in cancer growth and cancer risk. Their PSA level also subsided. All these antioxidants benefits may prove useful for curbing oxidative and DNA damage.
Cancer patients should talk to a doctor before taking a vitamin E supplement. Even if a vitamin E supplement can come in handy, healthy food should remain a top priority paired with their necessary therapy.
6 Other Health Benefits of Antioxidants
According to research, antioxidants could have the potential to aid in cancer prevention, as well as heart disease and other ailments. But, there is more to them than meets the eye.
When you look at the currently available food science, you can see why.
1. Support kidney function
An antioxidant diet can have a plethora of uses. Even for your kidneys. Reports show an antioxidant can play a role in chronic kidney disease (CKD). It can curb renal dysfunction in CKD patients. They may also help in the form of a dietary supplement.
2. Improve reproductive function
Oral intake of antioxidants is believed to improve semen parameters. Because it can restrict oxidative damage, it could maintain the DNA integrity of the sperm. So, antioxidants might prove useful for male infertility.
3. Enhance skin health
Antioxidants are a popular addition to over-the-counter skincare products. Skincare companies are constantly looking to use an antioxidant product to reach a wider audience.
That’s because antioxidants can help with skin issues, protect the skin, and provide anti-aging properties.
Another thing to point out is vitamin D. This vitamin is critical for the skin. Plus, dermatologists often recommend antioxidants like vitamin E, C, and A to prevent skin cancer. But, more data is necessary to evaluate that effect.
4. Boost the immune system
An antioxidant supplement might amplify some immune responses. Particularly a supplement with vitamin E, C, or vitamin A.
So, it’s a good thing to have an antioxidant at hand, like adequate vitamin E supplementation. Not just for heart disease, but for a healthy immune system as well.
5. Boost sleep quality
Sleep with bladder dysfunction can be a real problem. Men often wake up at night to urinate. This can put a lot of pressure on their day-to-day lives.
6. Help with insulin sensitivity
A well-defined antioxidant diet can improve insulin resistance. Eat the right vegetables, like red sweet pepper, turnip greens, beet greens, broccoli, etc, because they are packed with vitamin E.
Feel free to enjoy some dark chocolate, as well as blueberry and matcha. If your diet doesn’t have enough antioxidants or vitamin E, talk to a dietitian or nutritionist. They can then advise you on how to make the necessary changes.
Antioxidants have many benefits for prostate health. But, the impact of the antioxidant will vary since everyone has different vitamin requirements.
For men who eat plenty of fruits and veggies in their diet, their bodies may already have a sufficient amount of antioxidants. But, when additional antioxidant intake is necessary, antioxidant supplements can come in handy.