Prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death among men, and considered "epidemic" amongst African American men.
Researchers have uncovered data revealing that the trace mineral zinc plays an active role in maintaining prostate health. Studies reveal that the presence of zinc in the body helps suppress tumor growth, especially in the prostate.
A number of studies….
….demonstrate specific mechanisms by which zinc acts as a tumor suppressor.
Zinc alters the biology of prostate cells to make them less likely to undergo malignant transformation, and less able to multiply and survive as cancer cells.
Zinc is a powerful tumor suppressor…..
High levels of zinc in the prostate gland have been shown to be an essential factor in preventing the initiation of cancer in prostate cells.
At high levels, zinc is toxic for most human cells, but having developed the mechanism for concentrating zinc, prostate peripheral zone cells can resist that toxicity and derive protective benefit.
Zinc switches “on” the programmed cell death mechanism…..
Apoptosis is one of the body’s main self-protection mechanisms, causing cells to die when they are not needed or could cause damage.
Zinc also inhibits cell migration and invasion into other tissues….
…..a characteristic that is common in malignant cells. Prostate cancer cells have sharply reduced concentrations of zinc.
Indeed, it has been observed that malignant prostate tissue does not demonstrate the high zinc levels typical of healthy prostate tissue.
Healthy prostate tissue contains the body’s highest concentrations of zinc…..
……while prostate cancer cells lose the ability to selectively take up and store zinc as they age.
It is now evident that dietary zinc provides tumor suppressor activity that protect cells against prostate carcinogenesis in preclinical research.
High levels of Zinc protect against Prostate cancer
Recent epidemiological studies demonstrate that men with higher levels of zinc, from diet are protected against advanced prostate cancer.
(…see my notes below why I don't think this means men should load up on Zinc supplements).
Studies show that measurements of prostate tissue zinc……
…….correlate closely with protection from aggressive prostate malignancies. In fact, prostate cells accumulate more zinc than do cells in any other human tissue.
And basic laboratory studies are providing insight into precisely how zinc might interfere with the long chain of events that leads to the development of prostate cancer.
"Let Thy Food Be thy Medicine" –Hippocrates", 431 BC
My practical ways I get Zinc into my diet…..
Black Sesame Seeds
Quick Note: By far the highest level of Zinc of all foods
How I get it into my diet: A paradox of a food because either you can get into oysters, or you can't. I eat them in winter time for 4-5 months every year, and they are REALLY good grilled and baked/broiled. They got addictive to me after a while, I eat them every Friday night in the fall/winter months, and noticed I always wake up on Saturday with an rock hard erection (Sorry if TMI 🙂 ).
Quick Note: Chris Kilham, a.k.a., "The Medicine Hunter", says next to water, Raw Cacao is the most important thing you can put into your body
How I get it into my diet: A couple of tablespoons in my daily smoothies. Remember raw cacao is bitter, and a totally different animal that processed chocolate
Quick Note: One of the seeds/nuts that is scientifically proven and well known to assist in prostate health
How I get it into my diet: Luckily, I'm addicted to Go Raw Sprouted Pumpkin Seeds mixed with a moderately rich zinc food, cashews, and pumpkin seeds also works well in salads. This "healthy addiction" has me eating them all day every day.
Roobios Tea (a.k.a., African Red Tea)
Quick Note: Rich in Zinc, and an overall VERY healthy tea with many known benefits
How I get it into my diet: Might be a challenge to get tea into one's daily regiment, but I drink a mixture of Numi Brand Roobios mixed with Green Tea and Coconut water as the liquid base of my daily smoothies. I'll drink it as an iced tea in summer with Coconut Palm Sugar and a a hot tea in winter. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!!!
Why I'm not personally a fan of Zinc [or most other] Supplements
1. My personal and humble opinion is that nutrients are designed to be extracted naturally from whole food sources
2. I don't trust the ingredients they often use to make supplement pills, as in, they use GMO corn to make Vitamin C supplements
3. I think the body knows how to process out unnecessary minerals and nutrients in whole food sources easier than supplements
4. Supplements are increasingly found to have lead and other toxins, as so many are now unknowingly sourced from China
5. Supplements can cause the body to be unnaturally overloaded with Zinc, which can do more harm that good (it's very hard for the body to overload itself from eating whole foods)
There are many more practical Zinc Sources, just Google "Foods High in Zinc" and I might suggest at least attempting to make an effort to get 3-4 of the ones you enjoy eating the most into your daily regiment.
Excluding my list of Zinc Rich Foods, This article is a sampling of the important points of a longer article (with extensive scientific and medical references) that I found on LifeExtension.com.
Other Good Reads on this subject:
Global Healing Center: Foods High in Zinc
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