"What are the foods to avoid with enlarged prostate?" is one question that men with an enlarged prostate frequently ask their doctors. Let's find the answer today. The prostate is a gland located directly below the urinary bladder, surrounding the top portion of the urethra. The urethra helps carry urine from the bladder out of the body.
When the prostate is enlarged or swollen, it puts pressure on the urethra and blocks the flow of urine. This condition is called BPH or Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia. What's in your diet holds the power to worsen or lighten the symptoms of an enlarged prostate; your diet can also help slow the progression of the enlargement.
In this blog, we have listed all the foods to avoid with enlarged prostate gland. You will also find a list of foods to prevent prostate enlargement.
If you're aiming for a healthy prostate, avoiding certain foods is key. Some enlarged prostate foods to avoid are spicy, caffeine-heavy, and highly processed items. Opt for a diet with fresh veggies, fruits, and lean proteins. Try and avoid foods bad for prostate.
Foods to Avoid with Enlarged Prostate
1. Alcoholic Drinks
Which is the top item of food not good for prostate enlargement? Alcohol. Drinking alcohol can increase your risk of getting prostate cancer. Researchers found that heavy drinkers were twice as likely to be diagnosed with advanced prostate cancer as moderate drinkers using data from more than 10,000 men who took part in the Prostate Cancer Prevention Trial in the 1990s.
How many drinks are too many drinks? For men, heavy drinking is typically defined as more than three drinks per day or more than 20 drinks per week.
Here is a list of best drinks for enlarged prostate:
- Sparkling water or water mixed with fresh juice extracts.
- Alcohol-free beer or wine
- Kombucha, etc.
2. Red meat and processed meat
A diet high in meat may be associated with an increased risk of developing prostate cancer. This may be due to heterocyclic amines (HCAs). These are carcinogens (cancer-causing agents in foods) found in cooked meat. HCAs are formed when meat is cooked at a high temperature. HCAs have been linked to the development of several cancers.
The World Health Organization has stated that both red and processed meats may increase your risk of developing prostate cancer.
- lunch meats
- hot dogs
Any meat that is dark red in color before it's cooked is red. Instead of red or processed meats, try these protein sources instead:
- Lean poultry, meats with a relatively low-fat content, like skinless chicken
- fresh or canned fish
- beans and legumes
- whole grains
- nuts and nut butter
Try making a chicken salad sandwich if you're craving cold-cut sandwiches. Also, try meat alternatives like tofu or tempeh to create a savory sandwich filling. You can also go meat-free for some meals.
3. Dairy foods & Dairy Products
Second on the list of BPH foods to avoid with an enlarged prostate gland are dairy foods and dairy products.
Dairy foods are a core element in our day-to-day life, from the morning coffee to the haldi doodh we drink before bed; staying away from dairy products might seem impossible, but we must definitely try.
Consuming large amounts of dairy products may increase your risk of developing prostate cancer. According to research published in the Journal of Nutrition, drinking whole milk may increase the risk of progression to fatal prostate cancer. Skim and low-fat milk also increase the risk of low-grade stages of the disease. Try to limit dairy consumption. At the very least, stick to fat-free and low-fat varieties, as they can be healthier for your prostate.
Instead try soy milk or coconut milk instead of dairy milk. You can also find non-dairy products that use these non-dairy milks as a base.
4. Saturated fats
Saturated fats have been linked to heart disease, but their association with prostate health is still inconclusive.
Reducing your intake of saturated fats may benefit your prostate and your overall health, since it creates more room for fibre and nutrient-dense plants.
Saturated fats are found in:
- Meat and meat products
- Dairy products like cheese, butter, yogurt, etc.
- salad dressings or sauce for salads
- baked goods like breads, cookies, cakes, etc.
You can replace the saturated fats in your diet with unsaturated fats, such as:
- Olive oil
Caffeine is the top food to avoid with BPH. Caffeine is a diuretic and can cause increased urination. It's advisable to avoid caffeine if you have BPH, as caffeine also increases urinary frequency and urgency. It also triggers a rapid heart rate, anxiety, and insomnia.
Caffeine is most commonly found in:
- Cocoa beans and chocolates
- Energy drinks
- Some medications
Sodium intake is known to be associated with hypertension (HTN) or high blood pressure, which indirectly affects lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS). LUTS in turn can cause voiding symptoms, problems in storing the produced urine and nocturia.
7. Sugary foods
Your blood sugar has an effect on your prostate gland. Studies have shown that men with high blood sugar levels are three times more at risk of developing an enlarged prostate. Obese men are also at a much higher risk.
8. Spicy foods
Spicy foods can cause inflammations in the prostate and can cause pelvic, back, or perineal (between your vagina and anus) pain and burning during urination. Try to include more non-inflammatory foods like berries, avocados, tomatoes, etc.
Foods to Eat
Some foods to eat for better prostate health are:
Rich in omega-3 fatty acids, salmon can be beneficial for prostate health, as these fatty acids have anti-inflammatory properties that may help manage symptoms.
Broccoli, a cruciferous vegetable, contains compounds that may support prostate health, including sulforaphane, known for its potential anti-cancer properties.
Berries, packed with antioxidants, can contribute to overall prostate health by reducing oxidative stress and inflammation in the body.
Nuts, with their healthy fats and nutrients, are associated with potential prostate health benefits, as they provide essential nutrients and may play a role in reducing the risk of certain prostate conditions.
Tips for Prostate Health
- Maintain a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and whole grains
- Stay physically active with regular exercise
- Limit alcohol consumption and avoid excessive caffeine
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water
- Consider foods rich in antioxidants, like tomatoes and green tea
- Discuss your prostate health with a healthcare professional, especially if you're at risk for prostate issues or have symptoms
In conclusion, when managing an enlarged prostate, it's important to be mindful of the foods to avoid with enlarged prostate. These include caffeine, alcohol, spicy foods, and excessive red meat. These dietary adjustments can help manage symptoms and improve overall prostate health. However, it's essential to consult a healthcare professional for personalised dietary recommendations and guidance to effectively address the specific needs of an enlarged prostate.
What are some foods to avoid with enlarged prostate?
Foods bad for prostate include caffeine, alcohol, spicy foods, and excessive red meat, as they can exacerbate symptoms.
What are some of the best drinks for enlarged prostate?
The best drinks for enlarged prostate typically include:
- Water: Staying well-hydrated is essential for overall prostate health.
- Herbal teas: Non-caffeinated herbal teas, such as green tea, chamomile, and saw palmetto, may have potential benefits.
- Cranberry juice: It can help promote urinary tract health.
- Tomato juice: Rich in lycopene, which is associated with prostate health.
It's essential to consult a healthcare professional for personalised dietary recommendations tailored to your specific needs.
Are there specific vegetables that may be food to avoid with enlarged prostate?
Vegetables like spicy peppers, onions, and garlic can be irritating to the bladder for someone with an enlarged prostate. While these vegetables offer health benefits, it may be worth observing how your body responds and adjusting your intake accordingly.