by Matt Weik
As men age, they may experience some issues with their health. Some may be due to lifestyle factors, some environmental, some heredity, and some for no rhyme or reason. However, one such area of concern for nearly all men is their prostate. Harvard has found that by the age of 60, half of all men will have an enlarged prostate. Should they consider using saw palmetto supplements? Perhaps.
In addition, bump the age up to 85, and the number of men who have an enlarged prostate is now 90%. So, as you can see, some conditions are out of your control, but that doesn’t mean you can’t try to mitigate them and the issues.
PEDs and prohormone use over the past couple of decades has been a concern in the fitness industry. Many who use and abuse such products may have found that they now have an enlarged prostate even as early as in their 20s. For that reason, it’s common for many men of all ages to be supplementing with saw palmetto supplements.
What exactly are saw palmetto supplements, and what do they do? In this article, we will break down precisely what saw palmetto is, why you may want to consider adding saw palmetto supplements to your regimen, and all of the benefits you can experience their its use.
What is Saw Palmetto?
Saw palmetto (scientifically known as Serenoa Repens) is a dwarf palm tree, native to the southeast region of North America. It is widely known for its diuretic, nutritional, aphrodisiac, sedative, and cough-reducing properties.
The saw palmetto plant produces dark berries that contain a seed. These berries are commonly used as a supplement to balance hormones, prevent hair loss, and improve prostate health. Also, it helps in reducing inflammation and improving urinary function.
Next, let’s dig into what saw palmetto supplements can do for you.
The Benefits of Saw Palmetto Supplements
There are many benefits to using saw palmetto supplements. Below touches on many of the key benefits you may experience through its use.
Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. It is not meant to treat or diagnose any condition. The information found within is not medical advice and should not supersede a doctor’s diagnosis and treatment plan should you have a health condition. The use of saw palmetto supplements should never be a replacement for any medication that your doctor puts you on.
1. Supports Prostate Health
The prostate is located between the bladder and penis and is responsible for maintaining sperm health.
As per studies, 75% of men are affected by BPH in their 70s. BPH (Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia) is a medical condition commonly characterized by slow, noncancerous, yet abnormal enlargement of the prostate. Saw palmetto helps in treating BPH.
Also, it prevents prostate cancer. As per the American Cancer Society, prostate cancer affects 1 in 8 men in the United States. As per a study, saw palmetto berry extract can decrease the growth of cancer cells. Another study shows that saw palmetto blocks the growth of cancer cells by deactivating the receptors involved in development.
2. Improves Urinary Function
Saw palmetto is known to help improve urine flow. Urinary tract symptoms are quite common in older men and include symptoms like a problem or difficulty urinating.
As per a study, supplementing with 160mg of saw palmetto supplements twice a day may help increase urine flow and reduce the difficulty someone may have been experiencing.
3. Prevents Hair Loss
Hair loss is one of the most common problems that can be caused due to various factors like hormonal changes, genetics, use of stimulants, etc. Saw palmetto supplements can support the balance hormone levels that help combat hair loss.
It also helps in preventing androgenic alopecia, a type of hair loss. As per a study, saw palmetto supplements can help to improve hair growth in 60% of men between the age of 23 to 64. Another study shows that applying saw palmetto for around three months can increase hair density by as much as 35%.
4. Improves Testosterone Levels and Sex Drive
As per the research, saw palmetto supplements can reduce the 5-alpha reductase. This enzyme helps in converting testosterone into DHT. DHT is responsible for influencing a series of characteristics in men. This helps to maintain the level of testosterone.
Saw palmetto supplements support an increase in natural testosterone levels, which may positively impact sex drive, mood, etc.
Low testosterone levels may cause a reduction in sex drive. A study in the journal Urologia Internationalis found that saw palmetto supplements might improve sexual function in men. The study involved around 120 males. They found that the use of saw palmetto supplements boosts sexual function and improves the overall quality of life.
Are There Any Side Effects?
Though saw palmetto supplements are considered safe, they can cause a few side effects. A study reported a few side effects like headache, nausea, dizziness, and constipation. However, these symptoms are very mild.
Saw palmetto supplements may also slow down blood clotting. It thins the blood that may cause excessive bleeding during surgery or a laceration. So, if you have a surgery scheduled, stop consuming saw palmetto supplements at least two weeks prior. Also, inform your doctor regarding all the supplements you take.
Who Should Avoid Saw Palmetto Supplements?
Of course, saw palmetto supplements are not for everyone. Children, as well as women who are breastfeeding or pregnant, should avoid supplementing with saw palmetto. Also, chances are that saw palmetto supplements may interact with other medicines, so it is better to consult your doctor before you take this supplement.
How Much Should You Take?
You can utilize saw palmetto supplements in various forms, making them incredibly easy to add to a supplement and nutrition regimen. For the most part, it is available as capsules and tablets, but you can also find it in the ground, dried, liquid, or oily extract form. The recommended dosage is 320 mg per day, which can be divided into two separate doses.