The relationship between constipation and the prostate is kind of like the old chicken and egg conundrum. The egg: Constipation, aka the build-up of feces in the intestine (also called the bowel), can put pressure on the bladder and the prostate, which can cause symptoms resembling those associated with an enlarged prostate.
The chicken: an enlarged prostate can put pressure on the rectum and cause constipation. But wait, there’s more…
BPH is short for Benign Prostate Hyperplasia – a bit of a mouthful. As the name suggests, it is a condition of the prostate, and as such, a men’s issue.
To explain BPH, we need to review a bit of anatomy.
The prostate is a gland part of men’s reproductive organs. It secretes seminal fluid, which is the carrier for sperm. It is located just below the bladder. It is shaped like a donut surrounding the urethra canal, which carries urine out of the bladder to be expelled.
Now, the issue with the prostate is that around age 40, it tends to start growing abnormally. As the prostate grows, it squeezes the urethra making urination difficult. It is the growth of the prostate that is called Benign Prostate Hyperplasia. Benign as opposed to cancerous, and hyperplasia means enlargement by cell multiplication.
As “abnormal” as this prostate growth is, its frequency is astounding. By age 50, 50% of men are feeling symptoms. By age 80, it is 80% of men. At this rate, you would think we would hear more about it. But then, most men do not talk about health issue much, especially if it has to do with a sexual organ. Thankfully the Movember movement is doing a great job working on that.
Women outlive men by six or seven years on average. More boys than girls suffer from hyperactivity, reading and behavioral problems, clumsiness, stammering and autism. Once they make it into adulthood, boys are more likely to suffer from circulatory disorders (including the biggest killer, heart disease), diabetes and alcoholism, ulcers and lung cancer. Male infertility rates are on the increase too.
WHY IS THIS?
One of the problems is testosterone. While helping out in many areas, it also has some drawbacks, including raising cholesterol levels and blood pressure, and lowering immune function.
Luckily there is an upside to all this and many simple ways to reduce the risk of having these problems…
The issue of prostate trouble continues to be a taboo subject for a large number of men. Often, men confuse a healthy prostate gland with virility.
What man would dare admit to having a weakness in this area? Prostate trouble has even been called an “old man’s illness.” A man’s reluctance to have a doctor examine his prostate as a preventive measure—in a process that involves the doctor inserting a finger into the patient’s rectum—is also the reason that so many men act as though nothing were wrong. That’s why only about 40% of men who may be considered at risk seek treatment—with a majority preferring to remain silent.
When left untreated, prostate ailments make it increasingly impossible for the bladder to empty itself completely. Residual urine begins to accumulate, and bacteria, which thrive in this warm environment, quickly begin to multiply.
“You have to eat anyway, so you might as well eat things that are good for your health in general and your prostate in particular.”
WHAT IS BPH?
BPH is a benign (non-cancerous) swelling of the prostate, which obstructs the flow of urine from the bladder, creating uncomfortable symptoms such as incomplete emptying of the bladder (and the consequent feeling that you constantly need to go to the loo), a weak urine stream, and getting up several times a night for an unsatisfying pee.