Europe has been using Saw Palmetto to promote prostate health for years. Enlarged prostate or benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) and the herb saw palmetto has been studied in European labs for it's effectiveness in treating the disorder. American labs lag far behind in their research of enlarged prostate and herbs to treat it. Modern medicine in America frequently relies on pharmaceuticals sometimes to the detriment of natural herbal remedies. For instance, Doctors usually proscribe Proscar (T) and other prostate drugs which take time to become effective, unlike the Saw Palmetto herb which will kick in within 30 days.
The medicinal part of 'Serenoa Repens' or the Saw Palmetto is derived from the partially dried ripe fruit of the plant. The Saw Palmetto herb is indigenous to Southeastern United States but is most prevalent in Florida. It is the sterols and the fatty acids that are found in the berry that are the active ingredients. In Germany ninety percent of treatments for BPH use the saw palmetto herb, while in Italy it is fifty percent. Their successes have been many since BPH is nearly universal in the aging process of men.
A Study done in Russia tested 150 men with an enlarged prostate who had been diagnosed with BPH and other prostatic problems. Their findings concluded that Permixon, a European brand of standardized saw palmetto herb extract, had a long term efficacy and acceptability as therapy for BPH. The test was conducted over a period of 24 months and it was found that the quality of life from the base line study improved dramatically. The men had decreased prostate size, better urinary flow and increased sexual activity. The saw palmetto herb works by protecting the gland from irritating testosterone levels and will promote it to shrink.
Even better news about the herb saw palmetto, is that when used to combat enlarged prostate its side effects are almost none and it is non-toxic. Some men complained of gastrointestinal disorders but these were relieved when the herb was taken with food. There were some concerns in the early stages of study that the saw palmetto herb would mask prostate cancer by lowering the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels. After much more study this was found not to be true.
Many studies show that you must buy a brand that is 'standardized with at least 85-95 percent fatty acids' with 320 grams of the herb. In a few cases when large amounts where used it caused diarrhea in some patients. Studies have shown that the saw palmetto extract is effective in 90% of the men in clinical trials in over a four to six week period. Pharmaceutical drugs have been shown to need up to a year for significant improvement. Another benefit is that saw palmetto extracts are about one quarter of the price of pharmaceutical drugs.
There have been other herbs that have be cited as beneficial to enlarged prostate such as, stinging nettle, pumpkin seed, zinc, green tea, South African star grass and melatonin. None are as effective or show the promise of the saw palmetto herb.
In conclusion the benefits of the Saw Palmetto herb for an enlarged prostate are many. It will reduce symptoms of BPH, with occasional mild gastrointestinal distress but this is infrequent. The herbal remedy will not interfere with a prostate cancer diagnosis and it has no known drug interactions. The dosage has widely been agreed on by scientists as 320 grams per day and will cost you significantly less then a prescription drug.
If you have an enlarged prostate and you are looking for an herbal remedy speak to your Doctor about taking the saw palmetto herb to relieve your symptoms. Always speak to your Doctor before adding any medicines to your regime whether they are natural herbs, vitamins or supplements.