In this exclusive online interview with Temitope Obayendo, Professor Oladapo A. Ashiru, a consultant reproductive endocrinologist at the Mart-Life Detox Clinic, Lagos, disclosed causes of prostatic cancer, and more interestingly, how the rich components of human diets, exercise and reduction of inflammation and oxidation process in the body can prevent the development of prostate cancer. Excerpts:
As a human anatomy expert, could you explain the likely causes of prostate enlargement?
Prostatic enlargement is due to the Androgen deficiency of the adult male. Basically, some hormone imbalance, principally DHEA in men.
What is the population of Nigerian men with prostate enlargement?
According to Dr. Abia Nzelu, coordinator, National Cancer Prevention Programme (NCPP), prostate cancer kills 14 men in Nigeria every day.
What are the symptoms to indicate the onset of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH)?
Symptoms may include urinary problems such as frequent urination, inability to urinate, difficulty starting or stopping the urinary stream, dribbling, pain, blood or semen in urine. Other symptoms, like frequent pains in the lower back, hips or thighs, could be noticed, including pain on ejaculation.
When does prostate enlargement become cancerous?
If left untreated, the benign prostatic hyperplasia becomes malignant after some years.
What are the available preventive and treatment options for prostate cancer?
Studies have shown that lifestyle, especially nutrition and exercise, has significant influence in prevention and treatment of prostate cancer. Inflammation and oxidation of body cells are natural processes that contribute to the development and progression of prostate cancer. However, environmental toxins and carcinogens also play a major role in developing cancer of the prostate.
Excess weight has been associated with rapidly progressive prostate cancer, which is a severe form. Therefore, incorporating good nutrition, exercise and detoxification (body cleansing) reduces inflammation and oxidation process in the body. At Martlife Detox Clinic, in collaboration with Viva Mayr Centre (Austria), we teach and practise a holistic approach to prevent and manage prostate cancer. Our focus is to maintain optimum health by conducting advanced diagnostic tests, detoxification programmes, health education, nutrition and exercise.
Nutrition can influence cancer prevention and treatment; therefore we encourage eating of foods rich in anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant substances, such as colourful fruits, ocean-caught fish, flaxseed oil, vegetables, whole grain and spices. Also, you can increase the protective anti-inflammatory components of your diet by cooking properly. Therefore, a diet rich in anti-oxidants, low in pro-inflammatory and carcinogenic substance can make a difference in prostate cancer prevention and treatment.
Orthomolecular supplements help in prevention and treatment of prostate cancer; they include vitamins, carotenoids, and mineral supplements like selenium, folic acid, calcium, magnesium and zinc. Vitamins are essential in preventing and treating prostate cancer. They include vitamin C, B3, and vitamin E, which is an anti-oxidant that decreases concentration of free radicals that can lead to cancer. Lycopene is a naturally occurring chemical that gives fruits and vegetables a red colour. It is one of the numbers of pigments called carotenoids. Lycopenes is found in tomato, watermelons, pink grapefruits, apricots and pink guavas. Lycopene is a powerful anti-oxidant that may help protect cells from damage. Studies have revealed that lycopene supplements help in preventing prostate cancer.
Magnesium plays an essential role in DNA repair, cell differentiation and proliferation, apoptosis and angiogenesis. Magnesium deficiency is also linked to inflammatory response and oxidative stress; therefore this can alter multiple pathways to cause cancer. Research carried out by the National Cancer Institute found out that higher blood magnesium levels are associated with a lower risk of prostate cancer. Calcium has been identified to reduce the risk for prostate cancer, especially in black men and lowers the risk for high grade cancer among all men. Co-enzyme Q10, also called ubiquinone, has been reported to have anticancer properties, as well as folic acid. Selenium is a mineral supplement, a trace element that is important in prevention of cancer. Zinc is noted to shrink enlarged prostate glands and is helpful in the prevention and treatment of prostate cancer.
Detoxification is also very helpful. It is the process of cleansing the body from accumulated toxins. These toxins could be derived from the environment or the food we consume daily. Mart-Life Detox Clinic is fully equipped with advanced technology and trained professionals to deliver expert detoxification process which is the core element of any treatment. Emphasis is placed on rest, strict cleansing of the digestive system, and removal of heavy metals by foot hydrolysis detox.
Regular exercise is essential in preventing prostate cancer. This enables one lose excess weight, which is a risk factor for this disease. It helps in reducing the inflammatory and oxidative processes that assist in carcinogenesis.
How best can prostate cancer be managed?
The management of prostate cancer has different treatment options, which depend on the stage of the cancer. These include: watchful waiting, surgery, radiation, hormone therapy or chemotherapy. The choice of treatment depends on the age of the patient and doctor’s recommendation, but most people advocate watchful waiting.
Mart-Life Detox Clinic has successfully managed prostate cancer patients with our Mayr medical practice, which is based on principles of rest; cleansing; re-education of eating habits; nutrition; orthomolecular supplements to hinder the inflammatory and oxidative processes in carcinogenesis; exercise; meditation; and self-discovery.
There is also hormonal treatment, which involves the use of LHRH antagonist like Lupron depot hormones to decrease the size of the prostatic enlargement. The same hormone, Lupron or zoladec, is used in the female to reduce fibroid size.
A recent surgery research has revealed that one in three men treated with surgery or radiation will have cancer return. However, the choice of surgery should be ONLY as a last resort.