During the recent years, natural solutions to boost virility and sexual stamina have come to prominence, growing bigger on the market proportionally to the advance and development of pharmacologically formulated substances – as a side-effect free alternative to the latter. And although no substance with curative powers is completely void of adverse reactions and contraindications, it goes without saying that herbal products have considerably fewer side effects and are available to a wider range of patients. They also have a considerable benefit of being cheaper and easier to buy: although a doctor’s consultation is always recommended, even in case of all-natural supplements, a medical prescription is not required.
So what is the celebrated testosterone booster, Saw Palmetto, all about? Is it worth the hype that has been building around it? Saw Palmetto is a supplement based on dry extract of Serenoa repens (or Sabal), a small palm tree native to the subtropical regions of the Atlantic coast of North America, the Mediterranean area of North Africa and southern Spain. This small plant produces fruits similar to red berries, from which some active ingredients are extracted, in particular fatty acids and sterols traditionally known for supporting urinary functions and prostate function.
In men over 40, hormonal imbalances of testosterone and estrogen can cause benign prostatic hyperplasia (IPB), a condition characterized by an increase in prostate volume. The classic symptoms of BPH are difficulty in urination or, vice versa, there may be an increased frequency in urinating (pollakiuria) or the urgent need to empty the bladder at night (nocturia). Some studies have shown that the active ingredients brought by Serenoa repens have helped to reduce the symptoms of IPB.
The mechanisms of action are complex but an inhibition of an enzyme (5α-reductase) has been found which converts testosterone into dihydrotestosterone (DHT). DHT would be responsible for stimulating prostate tissue, causing hyperplasia. Another avenue of action would appear to be related to the inhibition of some estrogen-related processes that would lead to IPB. If the mechanisms of action can be multifaceted and not entirely clear, the benefits brought by this plant are evident: in fact, several studies have been conducted which have shown how the administration of Serenoa repens can be a valid support for the well-being of the prostate specifically in cases of nocturia by acting on the spasmolytic activity (sudden and involuntary contraction) of the muscles of the urinary tract. Fields of action: prostate function, urinary tract function.
How to choose a good Saw Palmetto supplement? Look for a supplement that contains dry extract standardized to 30% fatty acids, the only excipient present should be organic rice flour. Absence of allergens is important, so scan the ingredients closely to detect the substances that you have known sensitivities for. There are also products containing Saw Palmetto suitable for vegans and vegetarians.