Yoga, Men & Prostate Health
Men's Prostate Health

February 01st 2013 - Each year 40,000 American men have their prostates surgically removed (called prostatectomy) or burned with radiation, often within 48 hours of cancer diagnosis. While doing so may eliminate an immediate problem, it will also result in reduced quality of life, often including impotence and incontinence. And, unfortunately, surgery and radiation don't work as well as claimed. Often the cancer recurs – 35% require treatment within 5 yrs and 75% within 10 yrs according to Medical Tribune(March 21, 1996).

According to Gerald W. Chodak, M.D., of Weiss Memorial Hospital in Chicago, a physician who contributed to the report, the likelihood that additional therapy will be required in the future is "an additional piece of information that is not generally provided to patients" at the time a prostatectomy is recommended. Often there are no warning signs, even in cases of advanced cancer. So men, please don’t wait for symptoms to occur. Get regular check ups with your physician.

That's why it's important to learn about your prostate and take care of it now, before trouble begins.The prostate is a chestnut shaped and sits right below the bladder and is wrapped around the urethra, but it has nothing to do with a man's urinary apparatus It is that vital center from which men derive their vitality, creative energy, and sexual energy. Without it, overall health and quality of life is severely diminished.

Did you know that Yoga can be an excellent preventative tool as well? Switching to a vegan diet, along with exercising, meditating and participating in support groups -- may halt, or even reverse, the progress of early stage prostate cancer, suggests a study published in the Journal of Urology. The research is the first randomized, controlled trial showing that lifestyle changes may affect the progression of any type of cancer, say the authors.

The directors of the study were Dean Ornish, MD, clinical professor, and Peter Carroll, MD, chair of the Department of Urology, both of the University of California, San Francisco, and the late William Fair, MD, chief of urologic surgery and chair of urologic oncology, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.

The researchers studied 93 men who had elected not to undergo conventional treatment for their prostate cancer for reasons unrelated to this study. The participants were assigned randomly to two groups: those who were asked to make comprehensive changes in diet and lifestyle, and those who were not asked to do so.
Participants in the lifestyle-change group were placed on a vegan diet consisting primarily of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and legumes supplemented with soy, vitamins and minerals. In addition to Yoga, meditation, support group attendance and light to moderate aerobics.

After one year, levels of PSA -- a protein marker for prostate cancer -- decreased in men in the group who made lifestyle changes but increased in the comparison group, the researchers found.
They noted a direct correlation between the degree of lifestyle change and the changes in Patients in the lifestyle-change group reported marked improvements in quality of life, the authors note. None of the lifestyle-change participants had such conventional prostate cancer treatments as surgery, radiation or chemotherapy during the study.

"This study provides important new information for men with prostate cancer and all men who hope to prevent it," says Carroll. "This is the first in a series of trials attempting to better identify the exact role of diet and lifestyle in the prevention and treatment of prostate cancer," he points out.

"Changes in diet and lifestyle that we found in earlier research could reverse the progression of coronary heart disease may also affect the progression of prostate cancer as well," says Ornish, who is also founder and president of the non-profit Preventive Medicine Research Institute.

"These findings suggest that men with prostate cancer who undergo conventional treatments may also benefit from making comprehensive lifestyle changes," he observes. "This adds new evidence that changing diet and lifestyle may help to prevent prostate cancer."
Ready to get started ?

Try this simple Yoga asana. It’s called Baddha Konasana –
(Cobbler pose). Yes, in India cobblers repair shoes and this is the position they are in while working. By the way-these men do not experience any prostate problems-None!

Sit on the floor, tall-vertical spine. Bend knees until soles of the feet touch each other. Create the most comfortable position for you by adjusting the space between your heels and groin. Some of you will need a lot of space others will find the heels quite close to the groin area. Neither position is ‘better’—It is important that you adjust until you can sit tall & are comfortable. Remember this is a huge hip opener. Take your time. Then allow your knees to gently fall away from each other toward the floor. (Let gravity take the knees downward rather that forcibly pressing them toward the floor) A big stretch may be felt in the adductors(inner thighs), or groin, or both.

Make sure you can maintain this pose comfortably while diaphragmatically breathing(covered in prior issue). Breathe 5 slow deep “belly” breaths. On the sixth exhalation close knees together, straighten legs and REST-lying down on back, continue breathing smoothly and effortlessly. Begin with 1-2x a day. Increase holding time gradually. Remember less is more in Yoga. Please avoid rushing the process. Allow your body time both in the pose and in between repititions to rest, integrate and restore.

Contact Member:
Susan Pataky-Sanibel Yoga
2496 Palm Ridge Rd.
Sanibel, FL 33957
United States