Zinc is an incredibly important mineral, involved with at least 300 different enzymes and reactions in the body. It is critical for proper cell division and differentiation, DNA and RNA repair, and the strength and stability of your cells. And for men, it just so happens that of all the organs in the body, zinc is concentrated most in the prostate.
Zinc has developmental, protective, and functional roles in the prostate and is an important component of prostatic fluid, along with the enzyme prostate specific antigen.
Not surprisingly, this clinical study found that intake of the mineral may be a major factor in prostate health. They reported that the levels of zinc in the prostate were 83 percent lower in prostate cancer patients, and 61 percent lower in patients with an enlarged prostate (benign prostatic hyperplasia or BPH). They also found that plasma levels were lower by 27 percent in cancer patients, and by 18 percent in men with BPH.
Because zinc is not easily stored in the body for reserve use, it is subject to depletion due to stress, infections, injuries, and other challenges, so deficiencies could put you at risk. This is why supplementing with a consistent source is so important.
Consider finding a supplemental source that is chelated to the amino acid glycine. By binding the mineral to this nutrient, it readily absorbs in the intestine and can be transported in the body to where it is needed most – including the prostate.
Christudoss P, Selvakumar R, Fleming JJ, Gopalakrishnan G. Zinc status of patients with benign prostatic hyperplasia and prostate carcinoma. Indian J Urol. 2011 Jan;27(1):14-8.
Objectives: The exact cause of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) and prostatic carcinoma is unknown. Changes in the level of the trace element zinc (Zn) are known to be associated with the functioning of different organs (breast, colon, stomach, liver, kidney, prostate, and muscle). This study is aimed at estimating and comparing the zinc levels in the prostate tissue, plasma, and urine obtained from patients diagnosed with BPH or prostatic carcinoma.
Materials and methods: The prostate tissue zinc, plasma zinc, and urine zinc/creatinine ratio in BPH, prostate cancer, and normal subjects were measured by atomic absorption spectrophotometry.
Results: In prostate carcinoma, the mean tissue zinc was decreased by 83% as compared to normal tissue and in BPH, there was a 61% decrease in mean tissue zinc as compared to normal tissues. Both these values were statistically significant. The plasma zinc in prostate cancer patients showed a 27% decrease (P < 0.01) as compared to controls and 18% decrease (P < 0.01) as compared to BPH. The urine zinc/creatinine (ratio) was significantly increased to 53% in prostate cancer patients, and a 20% significant increase was observed in BPH as compared to normal subjects.
Conclusions: It is evident from this study that BPH or prostate carcinoma may be associated with a reduction in the levels of tissue zinc, plasma zinc, and an increase in urine zinc/creatinine.