If you have an enlarged prostate, your doctor will tell you to take any of the alpha-blocker drugs that are on the market. If you read Consumer Reports, they will tell you to take doxazosin, as “it has a long track record of being both safe and effective.” While the doxazosin may be “safe and effective” compared to most alpha-blockers, it still comes with a full list of side effects. These can include chest pain, irregular heartbeat, prolonged and painful erections, and vision changes.
Wouldn’t it be great to find a proven treatment for enlarged prostate without all the side effects? Well, two new studies say there is such a treatment.
The first study was a randomized, controlled study. It compared nettle root extract to standard alpha-blockers. The researchers found that nettle root worked at least as well as the alpha-blockers in every case — and better than the drugs in many cases. What’s more, the nettle root did so with far fewer, if any, side effects.
Another study, this one was relatively large that followed 543 participants. It compared the safety and efficacy of popular drugs to a combination of nettle root and saw palmetto. Saw palmetto has a long history of safe and effective treatment of enlarged prostate. The researchers measured the how well the treatments worked using maximum urinary flow rate and the International Prostate Symptoms Score (IPSS). The latter is a questionnaire that rates the impact of prostate enlargement on quality of life and urination.
After taking measurements at 24 and 48 weeks, the researchers found that both groups showed improvement. And the improvement was virtually identical. They also found that it didn’t matter how big the prostate was at the start of the study, the results were the same.
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However, when they compared the safety of the two treatments, a big difference emerged. The patients taking the drugs had significantly more side effects than those taking the plant extracts. In fact, many other studies show that the safety of saw palmetto and nettle root is unbeatable by any drug. The combination has virtually no side effects (some people may have a slight adverse reaction, but this is rare) or toxicity.
Most alpha-blockers, as the name implies, work by blocking androgens. These are the male hormones. But nettle root works differently. It does have a slight androgen-blocking effect. However, that’s not the main way it works. Instead, nettle root has an anti-inflammatory effect. It also modulates the immune system. Both of these help explain why nettle root works for other conditions as well. Many who take it for enlarged prostate also find that it helps their arthritis.
So if you have an enlarged prostate, don’t listen to your doctor or consumer reports. Don’t take any of the drugs on the market. Start by taking a nettle root extract. We’ve found that it works best when you take it in combination with saw palmetto, pygeum, and other nutrients that promote a healthy prostate. You can find such a combination in Advanced Prostate Formula from Advanced Bionutritionals.
Your insider for better health,
Steve Kroening is the editor of Nutrient Insider, a twice-a-week email newsletter that brings you the latest healing breakthroughs from the world of nutrition and dietary supplements. For over 20 years, Steve has worked hand-in-hand with some of the nation's top doctors, including Drs. Robert Rowen, Frank Shallenberger, Nan Fuchs, William Campbell Douglass, and best-selling author James Balch. Steve is the author of the book Practical Guide to Home Remedies. As a health journalist, Steve's articles have appeared in countless magazines, blogs, and websites.
Chrubasik, J., B. Roufogalis, H. Wagner, and S. Chrubasik. "A Comprehensive Review on Nettle Effect and Efficacy Profiles, Part I: Herba Urticae." Phytomedicine 14.6 (2007): 423-35.
Chrubasik, Julia E., Basil D. Roufogalis, Hildebert Wagner, and Sigrun Chrubasik. "A Comprehensive Review on the Stinging Nettle Effect and Efficacy Profiles. Part II: Urticae Radix." Phytomedicine 14.7-8 (2007): 568-79.
Sokeland, J. "Combined Sabal and Urtica Extract Compared with Finasteride in Men with Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia: Analysis of Prostate Volume and Therapeutic Outcome." BJU International 86.4 (2000): 439-42.