Saw Palmetto for Enlarged Prostate
Saw palmetto benefits in fighting enlarged prostate are known for a long period of
time. Many people from different parts of the globe have been using it. For instance, palmetto berries were used as food by the Seminole Native
Americans who inhabited Florida. They also used it to treat various disorders of the urinary system in men,
and treat breast problems in women.
The Europeans, who found that the berries of saw palmetto have
an unpleasant soapy taste, have used them only for medicinal purposes. After many studies, the plant was
first included in the list of official drugs in the United States in 1950. But the remedy quickly fell into
oblivion in America due to unfavorable prejudices medical doctors had against traditional remedies, as it is
the case today.
However, the plant was well regarded in Europe, which led some French doctors to conduct extensive research on the
connection between saw palmetto extract and BPH, and develop a type of lipophilic extract (extract with oils) in
the 1960s. Today, lipophilic extract from the plant is still used. In Germany, Austria and Italy in particular,
saw palmetto for enlarged prostate is widely known and used. For instance,
Permixon® is one of the drugs made of the extract of the plant.
During the 1990s, the plant has re-entered America, sold as a food supplement on the
internet and many food stores. Saw palmetto is often combined with other herbs to combat benign prostatic
hyperplasia, including nettle, African plum and pumpkin seeds. In addition, it has been proposed, with no clinical
evidence, for other therapeutic uses such as treatment of male hair loss, and women breast
When combined with Nettle (stinging nettle) the plant
is even more beneficial. Combination of saw palmetto and nettle is often used in many supplements a treatment for
BPH, as nettle is also beneficial in fighting urinary problems.
In 1995, a study
conducted among 2,080 men treated with an extract of these 2 plants, gave conclusive results. The results of
two double-blind studies of 24 weeks, as well as those monitored without placebo for 48 weeks have confirmed
the efficacy of the combination of these two plants as an effective natural enlarged prostate treatment.
During the study, the researchers used standardized extracts providing 320 mg of saw palmetto and 240 mg
nettle per day.
The researchers also compared Prostagutt Forte®, a supplement which
contained 320 mg of saw palmetto and 240 mg nettle, with conventional drugs finasteride and tamulosine during 2
comparative trials that lasted 1 year. The results show the two plants are as effective as the drugs but with no
Based on these many positive studies, the plants are
increasing accepted as a treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia by the medical community, especially in
Europe. For instance, certain health organizations in now recognize the use of saw palmetto for enlarged prostate and other urinary disorders.
Given so many
health benefits the plant shown to have on the prostate gland, some scientists believe it will somehow help
prevent development or combat proliferation of cancer cells in the gland. One point also considered is the
fact taking saw palmetto extract helps reduce urinary problems, such as urgent and constant need to urinate,
which are typical symptoms of prostate cancer.