Super Strategies for a Healthier Prostate

Super Strategies for a Healthier Prostate


  • Poor prostate health leads to common conditions such as Benign Prostate Hypertrophy (BPH) and Prostate Cancer in men.
  • Learn why this is a leading cause of sleep deprivation for men causing drowsiness and low mental function the next day.
  • Research has shown men are 75% less likely to develop poor prostate health and prostate cancer when they do one common lifestyle behaviour.

Movember marks Men’s Health Month, a month to raise awareness of the main health issues that are taking our men too early and robbing them of a happy, healthy life. One of the biggest health issues for men is poor prostate health, which if ignored can lead to conditions such as one of the main causes of death for men worldwide, Prostate Cancer or Benign Prostate Hypertrophy (BPH). BPH currently impacts 50% of men over the age of 50 and is so common now it is almost considered normal.

This Movember, we want to ask the men in our lives to look under their own bonnet and treat themselves to a service. Just like you regularly look after your car, your body needs a regular check-up to help keep everything in working order and avoid any life-disrupting breakdowns. Do it for yourself and do it for those that love you.

The State of the Prostate

The prostate is a walnut-shaped gland located below the bladder and is a key part of a man’s reproductive system. Its main function is to produce the fluid that is needed for healthy sperm so the prostate is essential for reproductive health. As a man ages, it’s now considered normal from the age of 40 for non-cancerous tissue in the prostate gland to grow and enlarge the prostate, a condition called Benign Prostate Hypertrophy (BPH).  Prostate growth is thought to be due to hormonal changes in the body however it has also been associated with men with a family history of BPH, Type 2 Diabetes, Heart Disease, and obesity. Up to 50% of men have evidence of BPH by age 50 years and this increases to about 90% of men by age 85–90 years.

After the mid ’40s, it is common that many men will experience non cancerous growth and enlarging of the prostate. This is known as Benign Prostate Hypertrophy ( BPH). Prostate growth is thought to be due to hormonal changes in the body however it has also been associated with men with a family history of BPH, zinc deficiency, Type 2 Diabetes, Heart Disease, and obesity. Up to 50% of men have evidence of BPH by age 50 years and this increases to about 90% of men by age 85–90 years.

BPH can see the prostate grow to the size of an orange, causing the urethra (the tube that drains urine from the bladder) to narrow and obstruct the flow of urine. This results in problems for the bladder and kidneys impacting a man’s waterworks. Some men with BPH have no symptoms at all, however, most men will present with a variety of the following symptoms:

  • Increased frequency – having to urinate more often
  • Urinary urgency – having a sudden need to urinate
  • Nocturia – having to get up frequently in the night to urinate
  • Difficulty with getting the urine stream started
  • Poor flow of urine – weak flow or stop/start stream
  • Dribbling of urine – particularly at the end of urination
  • Incomplete emptying of the bladder.

The severity of these symptoms will also differ between men but if left untreated it can lead to:

  • Enlargement and thickening of the bladder
  • Bladder stones
  • Urinary tract infections (UTIs)
  • Bleeding from the urethra
  • An inability to urinate at all.

An enlarged prostate does not cause prostate cancer, but prostate cancer can still occur in men with BPH.

The Impact of BPH on Sleep & Health

BPH induced Nocturia is the leading cause of sleep deprivation in men. After returning to their bed’s many men find it difficult to get back to sleep in the healthy and safe 15 minutes or less time frame and are none the wiser this increases their risk of death dramatically. Repeated disruptions to their sleep stop them from achieving the full phases of sleep needed for them to heal, repair and feel their best. Daytimes become a struggle due to drowsiness and low mental function. If left untreated, ongoing sleep deprivation can seriously impact all areas of a man’s health, quality of life and longevity.

Achieving healthy uninterrupted sleep with all phases including Theta and Delta brain waves necessary for repair mechanisms to activate and REM for emotional processing has been shown to be critical for a man’s optimal mental and physical health. This includes a healthy prostate, bladder and libido. A study conducted by Harvard Public Health found that men who slept longer and with fewer interruptions were 75% less likely to develop advanced prostate cancer than the control group.1 Any sleep issues caused by BPH can further compromise prostate health and should be dealt with swiftly.

Research also shows men who sleep less than 6 hours have smaller testicles, a 29% lower sperm  count2 and can age their testicles and reproductive health by as much as a decade, reducing their level of testosterone and growth hormone needed for a man’s healthy hormonal balance.

Sleep Deprivation also compromises brain function with men sleeping less than 6 hours shown to have lower motivation, creativity, problem solving ability, leadership skills, and lower work performance overall. It’s also bad news for mental health, with poor sleep leading to higher levels of stress and anxiety the next day, lower mood and mental and emotional resiliency to cope with any challenges they face.

Super Strategies for a Healthier Prostate

Prevention is always better than the cure but if you find yourself being affected by BHP these evidence based strategies are easy to action and positively impact your health.

Sleep – Your Superpower

Sleep is literally your superpower with deep restorative sleep essential for restoring your body and brain’s cells and ensuring you can function at your best the next day. Whether you want to improve your prostate health, general physical or mental health, intelligence, strength or sports performance, work performance, relationships, lose body fat or control your aggression, sleep can help you achieve it.

However, men often struggle to prioritise their sleep and repeated sleep surveys have shown that men who sleep less than six hours a night view themselves and are viewed by other men as more masculine.3 Given the research above proves that sleep deprivation reduces sperm count and lowers testosterone decreasing a man’s feelings of masculinity it is time that views on sacrificing sleep change.

#1 Improving sleep outcomes

It’s always important to maximise the sleep you are getting but especially if you suffer from BPH. Try to limit the amount of fluid you consume from 5pm so you aren’t going to bed with a full bladder. If you do drink caffeinated or alcoholic beverages try to consume these as early as possible as these are diuretics that will further increase the frequency of trips to the bathroom. Aim to finish your last caffeinated beverage by 2pm so it doesn’t delay sleep onset and if you are drinking alcohol in the evening choose low alcohol beers or wines.

Stop the late night screentime and get into bed early to give yourself the best chance of being asleep by 10pm. Your body sleeps more deeply in the hours before midnight meaning some repair and restoration will have been achieved before your sleep is interrupted by a trip to the bathroom. Ensure your bedroom is dark (perfect for releasing melatonin), quiet and at a temperature between 18-22 degrees so light, temperature or noise isn’t further disrupting your sleep.  It’s a good idea to charge your phone in another room or place it in a drawer so the light doesn’t impact your sleep and to help you avoid the temptation of interacting with your phone when you wake in the night.

# Back to bed as fast as you can.

If it is safe to do so, try not to turn on any lights as you navigate your way to the bathroom and back again. Lights will activate cortisol (making you alert) or hinder melatonin (making sleep difficult) and try not to start thinking about matters that are worrying you. Doing so will stimulate your brain and make it harder to get back to sleep. When you do wake to visit the bathroom, try to get back to sleep as fast as possible – within 15 minutes. Research has shown that taking more than 15 minutes to get back to sleep is associated with a higher risk of poor health and mortality.  Learning to breathe deeply can help calm your mind and settle yourself back to sleep. SleepDrops has a free resource called the SleepDrops Body Breath Scan available on our website here. It teaches you how to induce relaxation and sleepiness with your breath in 10 steps.  Meditation mantras are also very helpful. These are short, positive, repetitive statements used to control your mind. One such highly effective mantra for the middle of the night maybe “I’m going to sleep now”. Repeat silently to yourself whilst slow deep breathing until you fall asleep.

For more important information on how you can prioritise your sleep, see our resource – 23 Sleep Hygiene Tips.

Stay Active

Daily physical activity is incredibly important to help men balance their hormones, maintain a healthy weight, feel mentally sharp and maintain a healthy prostate. A study conducted by Harvard Public Health found men who were more physically active even if this was simply walking regularly at a moderate pace were less likely to suffer from BPH.4

Physical activity that is low to moderate intensity such as walking or jogging at a comfortable pace is also a great way to alleviate any stress or anxiety which can disrupt men’s sleep further. Increased stress levels can also make some men so tense it increases their frequency of urination making it worse for men already suffering from BPH.

Stay active with at least half an hour of physical activity on all or most days of the week. Try to include strength training which has been shown to benefit men at any age.5 If doing 30 minutes at once is too difficult you can break it up into three 10-minute segments. This also includes staying sexually active, vital to a man’s health, happiness and is associated with stronger prostate health.

Nourish your Prostate

Eating nutrient-dense, fresh, or frozen whole foods and predominantly plants is a great way to fuel your body and mind and improve prostate health. Sticking to three regular meals at consistent times during the day supports a healthy circadian rhythm which positively impacts your sleep-wake cycles.

Specifically, the following nutrients are important for a healthy prostate due to their actions to reduce stress and inflammation in the body and maintain a healthy hormonal balance:

  • Vitamin C– Consuming cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, kale, and brussels sprouts that are high in vitamin C has been found to reduce a man’s risk of developing an enlarged prostate and prostate cancer. Consuming a high-quality supplement that includes at least 2000mg of Vitamin C can also help you meet your recommended daily intake. ( See our SleepDrops Essential Sleep and Stress Nutrients)
  • Zinc – As men age their needs for this mineral increase at the same time as their ability to absorb enough zinc through their diet decreases. This makes it is extra challenging for them to keep adequate zinc levels necessary to maintain health and physiological function, repair cells and prevent prostate disease6. Regular servings of red meat, poultry or pumpkin seeds will help towards providing zinc but most men over 40 years should consider a high-quality supplement that includes a minimum of 10mg of zinc. Doctors in New Zealand do not routinely test for zinc and when they do it is not usually done following best practice methodology. If you are going to test your zinc ensure it is a zinc plasma test and not testing zinc serum.
  • Magnesium – Magnesium plays an important role in maintaining smooth muscle function (Bladder), balancing calcium levels and reducing inflammation and stress in the body. Several studies suggest that calcium intake and higher blood calcium increases a man’s risk of prostate cancer. It is difficult to obtain enough Magnesium through a healthy diet due to our rapid utilisation of this mineral and low availability through the food chain. Support adequate magnesium levels with a high-quality supplement that includes 400mg of Magnesium.
  • Vitamin E– eating a wide range of fruit and vegetables, nuts, avocado and olives will support you to consume your recommended intake of 400IU of vitamin E.
  • Vitamin D– while a small amount of Vitamin D is found in eggs, liver, salmon and tuna, the best way to maximise your levels of Vitamin D is to expose your face and arms to at least 15 minutes of sunshine every day. while a small amount of Vitamin D is found in eggs, liver, salmon and tuna, the best way to maximise your levels of Vitamin D is to expose your face and arms to at least 15 minutes of sunshine every day. Try and maintain your vitamin D levels in the upper quartile or around 120 mcg which you can be measured through a test from your Doctor.  During darker months or if you are struggling to get enough light exposure, a supplement of at least 10ug is recommended.
  • Selenium– Selenium is lacking in NZ soils which is why many of us are deficient in this nutrient. Eating 2-3 Brazil nuts each day or taking a quality supplement will help to ensure you are getting your recommended intake of Selenium and is great for prostate health.
  • Saw Palmetto– 11 Clinical trials have concluded that treatment with the herbal medicine, palmetto extract can help improve peak urinary flow rate and reduce the need to wake at night in order to urinate in patients with BPH.7

Don’t Procrastinate When Symptoms Present

Its imperative people do not ignore any signs and symptoms that something is wrong in the hope that it will go away. The longer these symptoms persist, the more damage can be being done and the harder any issues will be to treat. If you are experiencing any of the signs of BPH or poor prostate health stated above, head to your doctor and get checked as soon as possible. If there is burning, bleeding or pain while urinating, urgent medical attention is needed.  Your doctor will discuss with you the severity of your symptoms, any medical conditions, or a family history of prostate problems. They will then conduct a physical examination and a digital rectal examination to check for any enlargement.  A blood and urine test will also be done to check the PSA (prostate specific antigen) levels in your blood which is a protein released by your prostate gland. Higher than normal levels can indicate an enlarged prostate and BPH diagnosis. A Zinc plasma and vitamin D test at this time are also prudent. Remember to also request a copy of your results and do not rely on the “they are all fine” response from the well meaning practice nurse. Do your own research and take responsibility for your health. Optimal wellbeing levels are not the same as a lack of disease.

Special limited time product offering:

If you are suffering symptoms of BPH and waking multiple times through the night to visit the bathroom,  has been scientifically formulated to support mature men to get back to sleep faster. Carefully selected ingredients including Saw Palmetto nourish a healthy bladder, prostate, and kidneys to support fewer trips to the bathroom and a healthier libido.

To help men take action to prioritise their sleep and nourish their prostate for Movember, SleepDrops is offering a FREE bottle of SleepDrops Menzzz with every purchase of this product, now only $39.90!

We also recommend combining SleepDrops Menzzz with our Essential Sleep and Stress Nutrients our high strength supplement that further supports you to sleep through the night and get the deep restorative sleep you need for a healthy prostate and overall mental and physical health. These high strength nutrient capsules contain seven clinically researched ingredients including tart cherry (a natural source of our main sleep hormone mentioned above) and 400mg of highly absorbable magnesium. These ingredients work together to feed your deep sleep pathways to support higher quality and more refreshing sleep. High doses of Vitamin C and Zinc are included to support balanced stress levels and will support you to build a stronger prostate.

Shop at Menzz Sleep Support pack to get SleepDrops Menzzz and Essential Sleep and Stress Nutrients at the special price of $60.00 and save $40!!

As always, if you or a man you know has any prostate, sleep or health concerns, please feel free to contact our Naturopathic Doctor on 0800 345 888 or book an initial consult online and full health and wellbeing assessment, click here.

N.B If you have a man in your life, please share this blog with him. It may just save his life.

Source: SleepDrops Research Team


  1. https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/news/hsph-in-the-news/sleep-and-prostate-cancer/#:~:text=In%20a%20study%20led%20by,than%20those%20with%20less%20melatonin.
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5402839/
  3. Warren, Nathan & Campbell, Troy. (2020). The Sleep-Deprived Masculinity Stereotype. Journal of the Association for Consumer Research. 6. 10.1086/711758.
  4. Benefits of a physical activity intervention for men with prostate cancer – PubMed (nih.gov)
  5. The benefits of strength training for older adults – PubMed (nih.gov)
  6. Zinc Deficiency in Men Over 50 and Its Implications in Prostate Disorders (nih.gov)
  7. https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fonc.2020.01293/full