Both Saw Palmetto and Astaxanthin are beneficial for the prostate and prostate cancer
One of the reasons that Saw Palmetto Berry is beneficial for prostate health is that it inhibits the
conversion of the male hormone testosterone to dihydrotestosterone (DHT). By inhibiting this enzyme
you help prevent swelling of prostate cells that cause the symptoms associated with benign prostatic
hyperplasia (BPH). To do this the herb inhibits 5-alpha reductase; the enzyme which is responsible
for the conversion of testosterone to DHT. Inhibiting this enzyme may also aid the treatment of
prostate cancer. Studies also indicate that carotenoids such as lycopene also are beneficial for
In this study the carotenoids Astaxanthin and Saw Palmetto Berry were investigated for their effects
on 5-alpha reductase and on prostate cancer (prostatic carcinoma cells). The Astaxanthin powerfully
inhibited 5-alpha reductase (up to 98% inhibition at a concentration of 300mcg/ml). Adding Astaxanthin
to Saw Palmetto improved its ability to inhibit 5-alpha reductase. The higher the concentration of
Astaxanthin added to the prostate cancer the greater the inhibition of the growth of the cancer cells.
Saw Palmetto Berry also inhibited the growth of the prostate cancer cells. The study is published in
the recent issue of the Journal of Herbal Pharmacotherapy.
Hopefully none of us will encounter an agent as destructive as mustard gas, but it is good for us
to note that these particular antioxidants are very lung friendly and that available oral supplement
levels have shown protective activity in research.
Free radical damage is a major culprit in causing blood vessel dysfunction (blood vessels cease to
open and close properly) and a major contributor to hardening of the arteries. Plant berry pigments
known as polyphenols are powerful antioxidants that decrease inflammation in blood vessel walls and
help restore natural vascular function. In this study scientists compared the ability of a
polyphenol rich extract from Aronia Berry, Bilberry, and Elderberry. Isolated coronary arteries were
exposed to chemicals in the lab that prevent them from relaxing or opening properly. Out of the three
berry extracts, Aronia berry was the most powerful for relaxing blood vessel walls and only Aronia
Berry or Bilberry extracts produced vasorelaxation in coronary arteries and Elderberry extract had
no effect. The berry extracts rich in anthocyanins (Aronia extract and Bilberry Extract) improve the
function of the endothelial cells lining blood vessel walls, improve the function of blood vessels,
and protect them from free radicals. These extracts could have significant beneficial effects in
vascular disease according to these researchers. The study was performed at the Indiana University
School of Medicine, in Fort Wayne and is published in the December 8th, 2005 issue of the Journal
of Applied Physiology.