But Is This A Scientific Fact Or Is It Only An Assumption
Theres a particular link between cycling and prostate health. Some urologic studies show that cyclists have a higher index of sexual health issues. This risk is higher than that of swimmers and runners, for example.
The prostatic disease index, on the other hand, shows no differences. If we take this type of study as an isolated fact, it appears that the prostate is not affected by cycling. But let us review more evidence.
Researchers in the United Kingdom took a sample of more than five thousand cyclists. The study suggests no higher incidence of lower urinary tract problems in this group. However, there was a clear distinction between those who rode for a longer time. 3.5% of cyclists who ride for a long time developed prostate cancer.
In comparison, only 0.5% of the cyclists who ride shorter distances had the same problem. They did notice a higher predisposition to numbness and sores in the perineum area, too.
A Dozen Things That Can Raise Your Psa That Arent Cancer
Elevated PSA levels dont always spell cancer!
This month was Prostate Cancer Awareness Month. So you went to your doctor for an exam and a Prostate Specific Antigen blood test. If your came Prostate Specific Antigen back 1.0 ng/ml or less, congratulations on a perfectly healthy prostate! However, if you are one of the many men whos Prostate Specific Antigen level is slightly to moderately elevated , not to worry, it doesnt necessarily mean cancer!
There are many things that can contribute to an elevated Prostate Specific Antigen level beside having cancer. Think of PSA as a barometer of overall prostate health. If levels start to rise then its time to take action as something is going awry.
Bicycle Riding: Good Or Bad For Mens Health
Urology Times Journal
Cycling has multiple benefits, and steps can be taken to prevent genitourinary injury.
Bicycling across the globe is increasing as a means of exercise and transportation. Clinicians need to be knowledgeable about the health benefits and risks of cycling so they can educate and care for their patients who ride.
The overall health benefits of cycling are tremendous. Cycling reduces the incidence of cerebrovascular accidents, coronary artery disease, hypertension, dyslipidemia, obesity, and diabetes mellitus. Strong inverse relationships have also been demonstrated between commuter cycling and all-cause mortality, cancer mortality, and cancer morbidity among middle-aged and elderly study participants.
Despite these benefits, cycling commonly leads to injury, with up to 85% of all recreational cyclists citing an overuse injury. Given unbalanced pressure distribution when on the bike, the neck, hands, wrists, lower back, knees, and perineum are the regions most frequently affected by cycling.
Cycling has been associated with genital numbness, priapism, infertility, elevated PSA, erectile dysfunction , lower urinary tract symptoms , and prostatitis. Several of the studies that posited these associations, however, were underpowered, did not use validated clinical outcomes, or had insufficient control group comparison. Consequently, the current data on cyclings impact on urologic and sexual function continues to evolve.
Impact of cycling on urologic health
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New And Upcoming Tests For Prostate Cancer
The good news about new and upcoming tests for prostate cancer is that they can tell you more specific information than the PSA test alone.
You and your doctor can use the new urine test for prostate cancer to let you know if you have low-risk or high-risk prostate cancer, and this can help you make more-informed decisions about further testing and treatment. Also, a new genetic test that predicts prostate canceris on the way.
This, too, will allow doctors and patients to learn more about how aggressive their tumors are so they can make the right treatment decisions for them.
Talk to your doctor about your risk factors for prostate cancer. Knowing your risk factors along with your PSA level are some of the first steps in getting on track with your prostate health. Just be sure that you avoid doing any of the activities that can affect your PSA level for the 48 hours leading up to your test, and be aware of the other factors that can affect your PSA.
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How Can Cyclists Improve Prostate Health
First, dont stop cycling, increased testosterone levels only occurs in the first 60 minutes and this effect rarely occurs in men over 55 years. Over time, testosterone levels actually drop below normal particularly among elite athletes. Likewise, oxidant enzymes are up regulated to compensate for the increase in ROS. Nevertheless, this issue highlights the importance of boosting the diet with polyphenol / anti-oxidant rich foods to help mop up these ROS.
It also would be sensible to consider practices which reduce chronic inflammation such as cutting out refined sugars avoiding carcinogens such as acrylamides formed by super heating carbohydrates reducing Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons and nitrates found in processed and burnt meats. Above all, its important to eat plenty of polyphenol rich vegetables, spices, herbs, teas, berries, vegetables and fruits.
In conclusion, the biochemical changes, which arise after exercise, have significant cancer protection properties and current research, studies linking cycling with an increased risk of prostate cancer are fundamentally flawed. Nevertheless, the generation of free radicals and local inflammation remain potential concerns with intense cycling. Adopting an anti-inflammatory lifestyle, eating a healthy polyphenol rich diet or taking a whole food polyphenol rich supplement such as pomi-t would be very sensible practice.
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Does Cycling Affect Your Prostate
The prostate gland, as a topic, unfolds many reactions in men. Most of them do not know precisely what it does.
But they are still afraid of what it may represent in their future. However, it may concern their present to a greater extent.
The prostate gland is an organ located below the bladder, beside the rectum. It embodies a fundamental role in mens life and health. It secretes fluids into the urethra during orgasm and intervenes in the ejaculation volume.
We usually start to think about the prostate later in life. But what if the practice of a younger man influences prostate health? For example, does cycling harm your prostate?
Essential Guide To Prostate Health For Cyclists
Responding to reports that cycling increases the risk of prostate cancer, oncologist Professor Robert Thomas provides some reassurance
The debate about prostate health and cycling has taken on renewed vigour recently following the publication of a study involving 5,000 cyclists.
It reported a six-fold increase in prostate cancer among cyclists who trained for eight hours or more per week, compared to men who trained for less than 3.75hr.
Of course, association does not prove causation. Men with cancer were more likely to volunteer for the study, and we know that intense cycling can increase levels of prostate-specific antigen in the blood for 24 hours meaning cyclists are more likely to be referred for investigation.
Not highlighted in the study was that the male subjects had a cancer rate three times lower than that observed in the general population.
This is most likely because there are over 180 beneficial biochemical changes that occur after exercise that reduce the risk of cancer by protecting our DNA, blocking cancer growth and spread .
Even so, we must take seriously the suggestion that cycling increases risk by elevating levels of reactive oxygen species .
Above all, its important to consume plenty of polyphenol-rich vegetables, spices, herbs, teas, berries and fruits.
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Follow These Testing Guidelines
As the American Cancer Society points out, PSA testing isn’t 100 percent accurate you can have normal results and still have cancer, or have positive results and not have cancer. An elevated PSA level can also indicate that your prostate is inflamed, or it can be a sign of benign prostatic hyperplasia, or BPH, as explained by the Mayo Clinic.
Following specific guidelines when prepping for a PSA test can contribute to an accurate reading. According to Harvard Health Publishing, you do not need to fast prior to having your blood drawn for this test.
However, ejaculation can temporarily boost PSA levels, and it’s one of the things to avoid prior to a PSA test. It’s recommended that testing be performed after at least 48 hours of abstinence.
Talk to your doctor if you have a urinary tract infection or other urinary issues these conditions can raise PSA levels significantly.
Although the impact of exercise on PSA levels remains unclear, avoid exercise for at least 24 hours prior to your blood test, and inform your doctor of any recent physical activities that could affect your results.
Does Cycling Really Damage Men’s Sexual Organs
New research refutes the theory that pressure from saddles can cause erectile dysfunction, and says cycling could actually improve performance in older men
Few doubt that cycling helps you get healthy. One study last year found cyclists are less likely to develop heart disease or cancer, and a 2011 review showed it improves fitness and leads to longer lives. But theres an area of mens health that has been the subject of a persistent question: does time spent in the saddle lead to problems in the sack?
In recent years, scientists have linked cycling with several male health problems, including erectile dysfunction, which they speculate is caused by the saddle decreasing blood flow to the penis. In one study, Norwegian researchers gathered data from 160 men after they took part in a long-distance bike tour. They found that one in five suffered with numbness to the penis that lasted up to a week after the tour, and 13% developed erectile dysfunction that lasted more than a week in most cases.
Another study linked cycling to prostate cancer or at least, thats how some corners of the media reported it. But the researchers admitted their sample was small, that more research was needed, and that their findings did not necessarily mean there was a direct link between cycling and prostate cancer.
I think that the riding behaviours that lead to prolonged perineal numbness should be avoided, he said.
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Blame It On The Bike Seat
When you sit on a chair, your weight is distributed across both buttocks. This takes pressure off the perineum, a region of the body that runs from the anus to the sex organs. It contains the nerves and arteries that supply the penis in men and the clitoris and labia in women. Sitting on a bicycle seat puts pressure on the perineum, compressing those crucial nerves and arteries. This can lead to loss of sensation and other problems.
Nerve damage accounts for the penile numbness that some male bikers experience. Pressure on the pudendal artery can add to this nerve injury to produce temporary or prolonged erectile dysfunction. A narrow bike seat can reduce blood flow to the penis by as much as 66%, and even a broad seat may reduce flow by 25%. The same processes account for bicycling-related sexual problems in women.
Make Sure Your Psa Is As Accurate As Possible
The PSA is never meant to be a one-shot reading its not a constant number, forever set in stone like the Ten Commandments. Instead, its more like a Polaroid snapshot a quick capture of one moment in time. PSA fluctuates thats why its good to follow the general trend of the number over time, instead of just looking at one reading and saying with absolute confidence that a man definitely does or does not have prostate cancer.
That said, if youre getting a PSA test, lets make sure its as accurate as possible. Here are some things that can artificially raise or lower your PSA. A couple of these can be avoided as for the rest, be sure to tell your doctor.
Dont get your PSA tested if you have a urinary tract infection. This will cause your PSA level to be elevated, says New York University urologist Stacy Loeb, M.D. Urinary retention will also cause an elevation in PSA.
Dont ejaculate for at least two days before you get the PSA test. This can send more PSA into the bloodstream and can artificially raise your PSA level.
Dont get the PSA test after your rectal exam. Your doctor should know this, but sometimes it happens. The rectal exam, which stimulates the prostate, can also cause PSA to be released into the bloodstream. This is an avoidable cause of unnecessary worry!
Dont work out right before your PSA test. Vigorous exercise can cause a bump in PSA, with bicycle riding being the biggest culprit.
Do tell your doctor if:
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Ask The Doctor: Biking And The Prostate
Q.I’m planning a cross-state bike trip. Can long rides hurt my prostate? I have an enlarged prostate and take medication for it.
A. A bicycle seat is perfectly positioned to place pressure on the perineum, the area behind your scrotum. The prostate is also in this same area, which has raised questions about prostate issues with bicycling.
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How Mens Prostate Health Changes With Age
This small gland does not remain precisely the same throughout your lifetime. It changes shape, size, and structure many times in each phase of your life and development.
The formation of the urethral tract in embryos and fetuses has been very clearly detailed. The gland has the dimensions of a bean at birth. It grows a bit afterward, but it is only after puberty that it reaches its definite size.
Throughout the life of a man, the prostate gland enlarges with age. The first stage of growth starts at puberty. Then, the growing process triggers the second phase of growth, when men turn thirty years old. Prostate tissues during this period also become thicker and lose firmness.
This is why young males tend to have a firmer and smaller prostate gland. It weighs around 6 grams, depending on the size of the individual. Through the years, it grows heavier, up to 11 grams in 50-year-old males .
In some cases, the prostate grows as much as to block the flow of urine. This is more common in older adults after age 65 years old. As the prostate surrounds the urethra, the gland clasps and obstructs the urinary system. The first symptom of such a phenomenon is a reduced urine flow.
However, in this natural flow of events, we also have to mention a few risk factors. They may influence your prostate health and dictate how soon they start showing up.
Your Sofa Is A Much Greater Cause For Concern
Men who spend a lot of time watching TV or playing video games have twice the risk of an enlarged prostate than those who spend less than five hours a week doing so. Whats even more alarming is that if you spend a lot of time on the couch, your risks go up regardless of the amount of time you practice sports.3
Your best bet is to go for a bike ride or find a pastime thats more active than watching TV! Your family surely has a number of ideas for things you can do that are good for your prostate. Even renovating the basement can be good for you!
Erectile Dysfunction In Cyclists
Erectile dysfunction is defined as the inability to achieve and maintain a penile erection adequate for satisfactory sexual intercourse. Erectile dysfunction may have psychogenic causes or organic causes . However, in most patients both factors probably contribute to the failure to achieve an adequate erection.
In cyclists, a population based study indicated that bicycle riding for more than three hours a week was an independent risk factor for mild to moderate erectile dysfunction. The possible cause relates to compression of the pudendal nerve and arteries while cycling. In a recent review there was thought to be a significant relationship between cycling-induced perineal compression leading to vascular, endothelial, and neurogenic dysfunction in men and the development of ED. Research on female bicyclists is very limited but indicates the same impairment as in male bicyclists. Preventative measures can help prevent impairment of erectile function. Some people say that there is less erectile dysfunction in cyclists as they are physically fitter – which may be true.
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Factors That Can Affect Prostate Health
It may seem cliché, but diet, exercise, and sleep are the main lifetime factors that affect prostatic health. There are many others, such as age and genetics. But you cant do anything about that. They are beyond your control. Thats why we are focusing in this article on those risk factors you can change. These are also known as modifiable risk factors.
As for the diet, antioxidant foods are fundamental to keep all of the body healthy, including the prostate. It prevents many pathologies related to the years passing, especially those that have to do with free radicals. This fact applies to the prostatic gland, too.
One of the best protective defenses against prostatic aging processes is consuming vegetables. We especially recommend those rich in fatty acids and polyphenols.
These polyphenols are also abundant in many fruits, especially cherries and grapes. You can find them in olives and peanuts, too. They have a protective function in plants and may give you the same benefits for your prostate .