To treat an enlarged prostate, some people use herbs, from flaxseed to stinging nettle to prickly pear cactus. At typical doses, experts say that most plant extracts are probably safe for BPH, or benign prostatic hyperplasia. But do they work?
Some supplements may help. Others -- including the most popular, saw palmetto -- might not. And a few, including zinc, may actually put you at risk for getting BPH.
Rye grass pollen extract may affect the male
testosterone, relax the muscles of the tube through
which urine flows (urethra), and improve how well the
bladder can force urine out. All of these may reduce symptoms of an enlarged
prostate, such as dribbling after urinating or having to get up several times
at night to urinate.
What is rye grass pollen extract used for?
People use rye grass pollen extract to
relieve the symptoms of noncancerous enlarged prostate (benign prostatic hyperplasia, or BPH). Some research
reports that men who use rye grass pollen extracts say their symptoms have
improved and that they get up fewer times at night to urinate.1 But there is very little research on this.
Is rye grass pollen extract safe?
have not evaluated rye grass pollen extract for long-term effectiveness,
safety, or its ability to prevent complications of BPH.
have problems urinating should see a doctor to rule out prostate cancer.
Prostate cancer is treatable, but treatment may be more successful when you
find and treat the cancer as early as possible.
The U.S. Food and
Drug Administration (FDA) does not regulate dietary supplements in the same way
it regulates medicines. A dietary supplement can be sold with limited or no
research on how well it works.
Always tell your doctor if you are
using a dietary supplement or if you are thinking about combining a dietary
supplement with your conventional medical treatment. It may not be safe to
forgo your conventional medical treatment and rely only on a dietary
supplement. This is especially important for women who are pregnant or
When using dietary supplements, keep in mind the
Like conventional medicines, dietary
supplements may cause side effects, trigger allergic reactions, or interact
with prescription and nonprescription medicines or other supplements you might
be taking. A side effect or interaction with another medicine or supplement may
make other health conditions worse.
Dietary supplements may not
be standardized in their manufacturing. This means that how well they work or
any side effects they cause may differ among brands or even within different
lots of the same brand. The form you buy in health food or grocery stores may
not be the same as the form used in research.
effects of most dietary supplements, other than vitamins and minerals, are not
known. Many dietary supplements are not used long-term.
In this article
This information is produced and provided by the National
Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National
Institute via the Internet web site at http://
.gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.
WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise
June 11, 2013
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor.
Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this