Try to Avoid Coffee and Caffeine

Try to Avoid Coffee and Caffeine

For men who have benign prostatic hyperplasia, coffee drinking can be detrimental, because the caffeine can stimulate an already overactive bladder, causing an increase urinary frequency and urgency. Most urologists believe that caffeine can irritate an enlarged prostate, so it is best to limit consumption of coffee, tea, and soft drinks with caffeine.

Caffeine tends to cause the muscles in the bladder where it enters the urethra to tighten up, making urination more difficult. Caffeine is also a diuretic, increasing the amount of urine in the bladder. These two factors can increase the urgency and frequency of urination, making urinary symptoms worse.

If you must have caffeine, have a cup of tea. Green tea is the best choice because it contains antioxidants and is lower in caffeine than coffee and most sodas.

Over 208 acids in coffee can also contribute to indigestion and a wide variety of health problems resulting from over-acidity associated with arthritic, rheumatic and skin irritations. Many people experience a burning sensation in their stomach after drinking coffee because coffee increases the secretion of acid in the stomach. Optimal health calls for an alkaline pH balance in the body.

Coffee inhibits the absorption of certain nutrients. It also causes calcium, magnesium, potassium, iron and trace minerals, and all essential elements necessary for good health, to be eliminated with the urine. Women need to be especially concerned about osteoporosis as menopause sets in. Studies show that women who drink coffee have an increased incidence of osteoporosis compared to non-coffee drinkers. Men are not immune to osteoporosis, and should also pay attention to their calcium intake.

An enlarged prostate, known medically as Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH), or a "swollen prostate gland" is a common male problem. The exact causes of an enlarged prostate is unknown, although age is a risk factor as it is quite common in men age 40 years or older. In fact, it is thought to be the most common male problem in those over 60, and 90% of men will have BPH by the time they are 80. Men often treat the symptoms because their sleep gets disrupted or they become incontinent. One dietary change suggested by some doctors involves a reduction or cessation of caffeine intake.

In BPH, the prostate enlarges because of a benign overgrowth of cells. As the walls thicken, the organ's size increases. The prostate sits under and against your bladder. As it enlarges, it displaces the underside of the bladder, pressing against your urethra, the tube that transports urine out of the bladder. This pressure increases your urge to urinate, causing you to feel a stronger need to urinate and to do so more often. This can disturb your nighttime sleep as your bladder repeatedly beckons to you for relief. You may have a weak urine stream that cuts on and off. In the worst cases, you develop incontinence or even kidney infections as a result of incomplete urination.

Caffeine does not worsen your BPH or make your prostate grow any larger. The only connection between BPH and caffeine is that caffeine's natural effect makes the BPH symptoms appear worse, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine.

BPH does not cause inflammation like prostatitis does. Prostatitis is a bacterial infection of the prostate gland. To date no measures can prevent BPH, because aging causes it. What we can do is reduce inflammation once it occurs.

If you decide to remove caffeine completely from your diet, do so slowly. Years of regular caffeine consumption can cause a persistent headache if you stop cold turkey. Remember to cut back on the other caffeine sources such as tea, cola, and soft drinks and chocolate.

You may see an improvement in your BPH symptoms once you get off caffeine. Bear in mind that even though the added effects of caffeine are gone, the symptoms of BPH will linger. Always consult your doctor about concerns about this or any condition.

Depending on the severity of the enlarged prostate, which your physician can determine, drinking coffee should be reduced or altogether avoided

If you have a severely enlarged prostate, you might need to eliminate caffeine from your diet altogether. However, if the enlarged prostate is minor, consider reducing your intake of coffee to one cup per day.

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