Using Pumpkin Seed Oil and Prostate Health: Does it Really Work?
Is there any health benefits from using pumpkin seed oil and prostate health?
When I turned 40, I remember my family doctor touching on the subject of prostate health and the issue of Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy (BPH), also known as a swollen prostate.
He told me it’s something to think about as I get older because it’s fairly common in men over 40 years of age.
With this in mind, I began to think about prostate health and the use of effective prostate health supplements to optimize prostate and bladder health.
While there is only a handful of research studies, it appears that pumpkin seed oil may help strengthen the bladder and relieve the symptoms of an enlarged prostate.
What is Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy (BPH)?
Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy is a fairly common condition for men as they get older.
Symptoms begin with men over 45 years of age and experts say that BPH can be as high as 90% in all men over 64 years old.
Common symptoms of Benign Prostatic Hypertrophy may include:
- Urine stream weakens when urinating.
- Having trouble starting urination.
- A feeling of ‘fullness’ after urinating.
- Frequent urination at night.
The increased swelling may also put you at risk for urinary tract infections and even prostate cancer.
Treatment for benign prostatic hypertrophy may involve the use of medications called alpha blockers, such as Tamsulosin and Alfuzosin.
These drugs work by relaxing the muscles in the prostate to help make it easier for you to urinate.
Possible side effects from these drugs can include dizziness, headache and fatigue.
Unfortunately, some experts claim that prescription drugs aren’t 100% effective and that having surgery to remove the prostate is the only effective treatment.
Introducing Pumpkin Seed Oil – Is it an Effective Treatment for Prostate Health?
There have been a handful of studies looking at pumpkin seed oil and prostate health. Some of these studies have shown that pumpkin seed oil may:
- Reduce an enlarged prostate.
- Improve urinary flow and bladder emptying.
The following research studies looked at pumpkin seed oil and prostate health:
1. 300 mg of Pumpkin Seed Oil may Help Improve Bladder Function in Men
Researchers treated 60 patients with benign prostatic hypertrophy (BPH) with Peponen capsules, a prostate health supplement that contain 300 mg. of pumpkin seed oil extract.
Patients took the pumpkin seed oil supplement for the following durations:
- 26 patients took the drug for 10 months.
- 22 for at least 7 months.
- 12 for at least 4 months.
Each patient took a daily dose of 3 capsules, twice a day for the first month, then 3 capsules, once a day for the remainder of the study.
At the end of the study period, researchers found that:
- More than 80% of the patients experienced improvement in bladder function.
- Urinary flow was stronger and there was a reduction in the frequency of night time urination.
- There was also a reduction in painful and difficult discharge.
2. Pumpkin Seed Oil Inhibits Hormone Responsible for Causing an Enlarged Prostate
Unfortunately for some men, testosterone can cause an enlarged prostate. Another group of researchers looked at the effect of pumpkin seed oil on testosterone-induced growth of the prostate of rats.
In this study, researchers encouraged prostate growth by injecting rats with testosterone for 20 days. Following the injections, the rats were given either pumpkin seed oil or corn oil for 20 days.
Their weight was recorded weekly and assessed to see if there was any weight change caused by the testosterone injections and pumpkin seed oil.
They used a “prostate-size ratio (prostate weight/body weight)” to check for prostate enlargement.
Researchers found that pumpkin seed oil caused a reduction in prostate size and concluded that pumpkin seed oil can inhibit growth of the prostate due to testosterone.
While this is only a couple of small studies, the research on pumpkin seed oil and prostate health is encouraging.
There is still unknown factors such as what were the actual ingredients in the pumpkin seed oils that were used that caused the effect.
There was also no specific data on recommended or suggested dosages.
However, there were no adverse side effects experienced from using pumpkin seed oil for prostate health.
Using pumpkin seed oil may offer the following benefits:
- May strengthen your bladder.
- Could work as a diuretic.
- May relieve cramps and reduce inflammation.
- Possible help with maintaining normal bladder functioning.
- May help prevent disorders and discomfort when emptying your bladder.
- Could have a curative effect on enlarged prostate.
If you’re want to use pumpkin seed oil for bladder and prostate health, you can use pure pumpkin seed oil supplements, like the ones listed at Best Pumpkin Seed Oil Supplements.
I would choose products that only use cold-pressed seed oils. Traditional pumpkin seed oils made from Styrian pumpkin seeds were reported to contain high levels of essential fatty acids, zinc, plant sterols and antioxidants.
So you should be careful to look at the ingredient labels to determine what type of actual ingredients you’re getting in the oil.
You can also look at using prostate health supplements that have a blend of natural ingredients that enhance prostate health.
These products may include saw palmetto, lycopene, zinc and Vitamin E; ingredients reported to help enhance prostate health.
Pumpkin Seed Oil Research References:
Experience with the Peponen capsule in the management of benign prostatic hyperplasia. Pumpkin Seed Oil and Prostate study. Hamvas A, Corradi G, Hegedus M, Frang D. Department of Urology, Semmelweis University Medical School, Budapest, Hungary. International Urology Nephrology. 1991;23(1):51-5.
Inhibition of testosterone-induced hyperplasia of the prostate of sprague-dawley rats by pumpkin seed oil. Pumpkin Seed Oil and Prostate study – Journal of Medicinal Food. 2006 Summer;9(2):284-6. Gossell-Williams M, Davis A, O’Connor N.