My father has an enlarged prostate and takes a combination of drugs to reduce the size of the BPH and most have been ineffective. He does not consume fast food and never has and eats a relatively healthy diet with lots of fresh fish/lean meats and vegetables. We are of Portuguese descent so the diet is not the typical American diet. I just started reading the Paleo Solution and wonder if my father who owns a bakery and consumes a lot of bread may be the reason his hypertension is so high?
He has had prostate ablation surgery a few times and the BPH is still present.. The urologist wanted to send him to ER the other day when his hypertension was at 180/100 and yesterday I took readings at home and it was 184/107.. called the PCP and he prescribed DIOVAN and 50MG ATENENOL to reduce it. As of this AM it was down a bit which is good..
Was looking for all natural ways to reduce the hypertension and maybe assist with the hypertension? And some guidance as to why these health problems are present when he does not consume a ridiculous diet (minus the bread).
DINIS, the bread your father eats is the culprit. It converts directly to sugars and spikes his insulin. The bread and sugar he eats brings about a majority of LDL particles that are small dense in nature. These sdLDL particles are like BBs flowing in the blood and they irritate the lining of the arteries and veins. The body lays down plaque over these irritations throughout the vascular system. Laying down this little bit of plaque constricts the flow of blood...thus the same volume moving through the constricted vascular system equates to higher blood pressure. And if there is a major irritation, plaque is layed down very thick to heal the irritation and the plaque gets thicker and thicker...resulting in an almost complete blockage to the heart...which is a heart attack.
To reduce the sdLDL particles he must give up wheat products and sugar.His LDL particle size will change to large bouyant particles that float through the vascular system and do no harm. It is the only fix that truly works over time. Pills only treat the symptoms...not the cause.
And spiking the insulin over the years every day with bread products and sugar, one can very easily become overweight and diabetic because the pancreas poops out and stops producing enough insulin to control blood sugar. Why take a chance on becoming diabetic with the associated risk of chronic heart failure later in life?
Your Dad can get off all the medications if he will change his diet to meat and fat, eggs, cheese, and limit the carbs to veggies with butter. Do not use corn products, corn oil, soybean oil, canola oil, sunflower oil. These are industrial oils our bodies were never intended to consume.
If he continues on the path that led him to this point, he will be gone before his time.
Aside from the bread issue, I know that beetroot is supposed to be good for blood pressure - also exercise, of course (which latter is good for prostate issues, apparently).
You also mention fish/lean meats - Does he get enough fatty fish? Mackerel, sardines? Why the stress on lean meat in particular?
Gary Taubes demonstrates in Good Calories, Bad Calories that the primary mechanism behind elevated BP probably has nothing to do with salt (in most people). Instead, the mechanism is something like:
sugar/grain consumption -> elevated insulin
insulin -> kidneys hold on to sodium
sodium retention -> body holds on to water
increased water retention -> elevated BP
Yes, the wheat is probably a factor. The only way to find out is to drop it for 30 days and see what happens.
There are two types of treatment options.
First, there are the pharmaceuticals and dietary/supplement measures to reduce blood pressure. Although these only address the symptom and not the cause, they are important because high blood pressure, itself, causes other damage. Without any expert knowledge on this aspect of it, I would probably take the pills prescribed by the doctors. As far as diet/supplements go, beets are pretty good. Roibos/hibiscus teas help too. Melatonin helps with nighttime blood pressure. Eating a low sodium diet may also help and should be tried.
Second, there are dietary measures and supplements that can help fix the underlying metabolic problems that lead to high blood pressure, in particular, and that lead to cardiovascular disease, in general. These include generally eating a nutrient dense diet (i.e., skip the bread, sugar, alcohol and oils -- and processed foods of any kind). Avoiding processed foods pretty much makes it very easy to avoid excess sodium too. The starting place for healthy eating is consuming only whole foods (i.e., nothing that comes in a wrapper). It makes sense to go further, however, given your dad's state -- it also makes sense to limit omega 6 oils (Avoid: vegetable/nut/seed oils. Limit: nuts & seeds, pork and poultry fat, avocados, eggs) and get enough omega 3 fat (2-3 servings of WILD salmon per week is sufficient; flax seeds are also good for those that strictly limit omega 6; grass fed dairy/beef/eggs should be sought, if possible). Get plenty of minerals from diet also. If your dad has good glucose tolerance (i.e., not pre-diabetic or diabetic) get your carbs from potatoes and other mineral-rich root vegetables. If your dad is pre/diabetic (which he probably is), get carbs from WHOLE grains (i.e., do NOT follow the paleo diet here), with primary emphasis on irish cut oats, real whole buckwheat, and wild rice (probably still good to avoid wheat). Eat a moderately HIGH fat diet (30-50% of calories), with serious emphasis on the more saturated fats (i.e., strictly limit polyunsaturated fats - to about 4% of calories). Take enough vit D to get levels to about 40-50 ng/ml. Take a low-dose vitamin K2 every day. Take a low-dose (perhaps a quarter of the recommended dose) multi-mineral (without iron) every day. Perhaps also add an additional low-dose supplemental magnesium.
Definitely worth cutting out grains for at least a month. With such high exposure there is a risk of systemic inflammation (which I think it is Robb Wolf's opinion that this causes high BP - not certain). Gluten/wheat intolerance can have a wide range of effects in different people - from gut issues to skin issues. It's only through elimination that we can be certain.
Of course your father should stay on his medications until a doctor says otherwise.
Why anyone would suggest someone with possible gluten issues should try whole grains is beyond me, also why on *paleo*hacks should anyone - and I quote - "NOT follow the paleo diet here". The paleo diet is the optimum diet that works for us based on an evolutionary paradigm and is open to interpretation!
Is he overweight?
Someone on a high refined carb diet even with out eating fast food and such might be overweight. Being overweight is a good way to be hypertensive. I would suggest dropping the carbs and losing 20 pounds or so and he will start seeing his hypertension go down as well.
He isn't SUPER overweight but could possibly be a little more active? He barely exercises because he owns a bakery (artisan bread and pastries) and that does not help with the gluten free diet. He also works odd hours.. wakes up at 1am to go to work. I am trying to get him to control/limit the bread/sugar intake and get him more psychically active. Got him on the Carlson Lab Fish Oil for now along with what he is taking until he gets to see his psychican again.
It is tough to convince a 57 year old man who is truly Portuguese (those of you who know Portuguese people know they love bread and sweets) to get off the GLUTEN completely specially when there is a bakery present..
I am forcing him to go run and stay active/got him on fish oil and also a Rainbow Naturals Mens Multi for now till he gets to see the doc..
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