Prostate cancer is among the most common cancers affecting men. What’s prostate cancer? It is the abnormal or malignant growth of cells on the prostate gland. Perhaps one of the biggest indicators is an enlarged prostate. Much like breast cancer for women, prostate cancer is the most common type of cancer among men. The standard alternative treatments for the disease include radiofrequency ablation, cryoablation, radical prostatectomy, and chelation therapy. But are there any natural prostate cancer treatments? Several studies on various natural remedies have shown promising results. However, further investigations are necessary to approve each remedy as a treatment for prostate cancer fully.
Here are six natural treatments for prostate cancer.
Lycopene is a red, lipophilic, and naturally occurring compound in many vegetables and fruits. It belongs to the group of pigments called carotenoids. Several findings supported by in vivo and in vitro experiments show that lycopene increases the antioxidant response of prostate cells. It can also hinder proliferation, induce apoptosis and reduce the metastatic potential of prostate cancer cells.
A clinical trial involving men with prostate cancer sought to investigate the clinical and biological impact of lycopene supplementations. The three-week-long trial randomly assigned 26 men with prostate cancer to receive the supplement and others to get no supplement before radical prostatectomy.
The study suggested that 30 mg of lycopene supplement taken daily for three weeks could be enough to modulate clinical and biological SEBS of prostate cancer. After completing the trial, more men in the intervention group that received lycopene supplements had smaller tumors than the control group. Their microscopic cancer extension to extraprostatic tissues or surgical margins also appeared to reduce and had reduced plasma PSA level, a clinical parameter showing prostate cancer burden.
Another study sought to establish the effect of lycopene on PC3, LNCaP, and DU145 prostate cancer xenografts in mice. It also evaluated the correlation between the compound and the alleviation of inflammation and prostate cancer progression. Lycopene treatment inhibited prostate cancer cells in all three cell lines. The compound also reduced the expression of inflammatory factors in the cancer cells.
When the researchers investigated the impact of lycopene on the survival of the test animals bearing prostate cancer xenografts, they noted a marked improvement. In fact, higher lycopene levels lead to better survival in all three models. Lastly, the researchers harvested the three tumors and noted reduced growth in vivo.
Consuming more tomatoes will significantly increase lycopene in your body. The compound is also present, albeit in lesser amounts, in other fruits and vegetables, such as watermelon, papaya, apricot, red cabbage, and carrots.
Ginger exhibits anti-inflammatory, antiproliferative, and antioxidant properties and is thus considered an effective chemopreventive agent. It blocks the 5-lipoxygenase enzyme that promotes cancer development. Its impact on prostate cancer cells includes weakening their development, disrupting growth, and controlling naturally secreted substances to trigger the self-destruction of cells.
Comprehensive studies confirmed that ginger extract interfered with cell-cycle progression and reproductive capacity and modulated apoptosis and cell-cycle regulatory molecules in human prostate cells. Daily oral intake of 100mg/kg body weight of ginger extract hindered the growth and progression of PC-3 xenografts by more than half in mice. Further, tumor tissue from mice treated with ginger extract showed slowed proliferation index and extensive apoptosis compared with controls. The extract also did not have any detectable toxicity in healthy and fast-dividing tissues such as bone marrow and gut.
#3 Pygeum (African plum extract)
Pygeum, an extract taken from the back of the African plum tree, contains alcohol, fatty acids, and sterols. These substances have an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effect on the urogenital system, i.e., genital and urinary organs. Small clinical trials showed the benefits of this herbal remedy for prostate cancer, but there is a need for more trials to confirm its safety and effectiveness. For instance, research to test the anti-cancer potential of this extract in both in vivo (TRAMP mouse model) and in vitro (LNCaP and PC-3 cells) found that Pygeum had a substantial role in regulating prostate cancer. It hindered the growth of the LNCaP and PC-3 cells, down-regulated ERa and PKC-a protein, induced apoptosis, and altered cell kinetics. There was a significant reduction in prostate cancer incidence in the Tram mouse model compared to casein-fed mice.
Proteins and enzymes in all tissues and cells of the body require zinc to function. Zinc is the trace element available in the largest amounts in the human body. Chronic insufficiency of dietary zinc causes debilitating developmental effects. It is now evident that marginally deficient zinc intake could be the reason behind various diseases, including cancer. The recommended daily allowance (RDA) by USDA is 11mg/day of zinc. Men who consume below that amount are at a higher risk of developing prostate cancer.
The relationship between prostate cancer and dietary zinc probably stems from zinc’s crucial role in prostate function. The organ has the highest concentration of this trace element in the body. The secretory cells of the prostate need high amounts of zinc to hinder the enzyme m-aconitase, whose function is to oxidize citrate during the Krebs cycle. Citrate is one of the main components of seminal fluid. A zinc-mediated inhibition of the enzyme is vital for the buildup of citrate in these cells as it allows the secretion of citrate into semen.
Due to the strong inverse link between intracellular zinc levels and malignancy of prostate cancer, a study sought to see the impact of intra-tumoral injection of zinc on prostate cancer growth. This study assessed the cytotoxic effect of zinc acetate on three prostate cancer cell lines (PC3, DU145, and LNCaP). The salt killed the cell lines in vitro, with half of the cell death occurring within six hours. This study went on further to establish the effect of treating a xenograft model of prostate cancer with zinc acetate and found a halt in the growth of tumors. Further, the animal survival rate increased without causing any detectable cytotoxicity to tissues. The study, therefore, concluded that injecting zinc acetate into the tumors could be an effective treatment for prostate cancer.
Another review of different studies revealed more about the relationship between zinc levels and prostate cancer. For instance, there were reduced zinc levels in patients with the disease. Further, zinc exhibits antitumor activities such as induction of cell apoptosis, suppression of cell proliferation, and inhibition of processes such as invasion, migration, and angiogenesis. Zinc transporters also showed tumor suppressive functions in prostate cancer development and progression.
Pumpkin seeds contain zinc content in abundance. They already effectively cure various diseases affecting the urinary bladder and prostate gland. You can prepare tea with the seeds by peeling, squeezing, and boiling them in water. Additionally, you can remove the shells from the seeds and eat them raw. Other sources of zinc include seafood, sesame, poultry, and nuts.
#5 Saw palmetto
Saw palmetto is a palm that grows mostly along the coast of the southern United States. Its berries have been used for many years in treating urinary problems, including bladder disorders, hormone imbalances, urinary tract infections, and prostate issues. It helps improve urine flow, reduce frequent urination and ease painful urination. One study revealed that saw palmetto can help hinder tumor growth cells, thus raising hope about its potential for treating prostate cancer. While there is evidence that saw palmetto could help ease symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), further research is necessary to prove its effects on prostate cancer.
Pomegranate fruit has been popular for centuries due to its medicinal purposes. Multiple animal, cell, and clinical studies have investigated pomegranate as a natural treatment for prostate cancer. The findings show that the fruit and its components disrupt several biological processes involved in tumor proliferation, angiogenesis, and metastasis of the disease. Further, different types of cancers share most molecular mechanisms, and pomegranate has proved effective against skin, colon, lung, and breast cancer, enhancing its therapeutic potential.
POM Wonderful funded a study that evaluated the effect of consuming pomegranate juice on prostate cancer. This study involved 46 men treated with either radiation or surgery for prostate cancer who had increasing PSA levels, indicating that their cancer had recurred. The men received eight ounces of pomegranate juice from POM Wonderful to consume for two years. After the period, their PSA levels had slowed, meaning their prostate cancers were no longer proliferating as fast.
The research further investigated pomegranate juice’s effect on cancer cell samples from a different group of men. This second phase of the study involved treating the cancer cells with a component of blood (serum) from the men who took the POM Wonderful’s juice to see if the cancer cells would stop growing. The serum-treated cancer cells died. You can drink pomegranate juice or consume whole fruit.
While it’s important to know these treatments, one of the answers to how to prevent prostate cancer is early prostate cancer screening. That way, you can assess your prostate cancer risk level and what type of prostate cancer therapy you can try, whether that’s alternative treatment or any other prostate cancer care.
Natural Treatments for Prostate Cancer
While various studies demonstrate the potential impact of different natural prostate cancer treatments, no single home remedy will necessarily cure the disease. However, they can help manage your symptoms and improve your health when combined with other forms of treatment. Your doctor can help establish whether alternative therapy, herbal remedy, or complementary therapy might help with symptoms of prostate cancer.
At Immunity Therapy Center, we provide a wide array of natural treatment options, including alternative prostate cancer treatment. Our dedicated team ensures our patients receive treatment that matches their preferences, extent of cancer, and health state. Contact us to learn more about our natural, holistic treatment for prostate cancer options.
Written By: Dr. Adolfo Carrillo
Dr. Adolfo Carrillo is a Board Certified Medical Doctor from Universidad Autónoma de Baja California.
Dr. Carrillo has been collaborating with Dr. Bautista for over 5 years as a treating physician at the Immunity the Immunity Therapy Center. Dr. Carrillo is a charismatic Doctor whose knowledge and commitment to patient care and bringing healing to patients is a valuable asset to our center.
At Immunity Therapy Center, our goal is to provide objective, updated, and research-based information on all health-related topics. This article is based on scientific research and/or other scientific articles. All information has been fact-checked and reviewed by Dr. Carlos Bautista, a Board Certified Medical Doctor at Immunity Therapy Center. All information published on the site must undergo an extensive review process to ensure accuracy. This article contains trusted sources with all references hyperlinked for the reader's visibility.