Saw Palmetto for Testosterone
Disclaimer: This content has been produced purely for informational and educational purposes only and is never intended to be used as a substitute for professional medical guidelines including diagnosis, advice, and treatment.
The benefits of saw palmetto for testosterone and its associated conditions are widely purported in the natural medicine community. Saw palmetto is a dietary supplement that is derived from the berries of a small palm plant species called Serenoa repens. Some studies have suggested that saw palmetto can help keep testosterone levels in a healthy state and also can help with preventing and managing some testosterone-related symptoms in both men and women
In this article, we’ll be exploring the effects of using saw palmetto for testosterone and its associated conditions. But before we get into how saw palmetto can help with testosterone and its associated symptoms, first we’ll need to know exactly what saw palmetto is. So, let’s get started.
Table of contents
- What is saw palmetto?
- Benefits of saw palmetto for testosterone and its associated conditions
- How to use saw palmetto
- Precautions and side effects
- Final words
What is saw palmetto?
Saw palmetto is a small palm tree that grows in the US mostly on the sandy soils of coastal regions such as on the East Cost. Its berry-like fruits are used to prepare dietary supplements and medicine. For supplementary use, saw palmetto is widely available in the form of capsules, liquid extracts, and tablets.
Saw palmetto has historically been used in traditional medicine by native people of North America for centuries as a sedative and as an aphrodisiac to treat a range of reproductive concerns. Some modern scientific research has also reported its favorable effects on testosterone and hormone health.
Benefits of saw palmetto for testosterone and its associated conditions
Saw palmetto can help regulate testosterone levels in both men and women. It has an incredible potential to prevent testosterone from getting converted to DHT (dihydrotestosterone), a more powerful form of testosterone. This breakdown of testosterone often leads to low testosterone levels and high DHT levels, which contribute to a wide variety of health conditions including hair loss, loss of libido, enlarged prostate (in men), and hirsutism (excess hair in the body in women).
Saw palmetto contains liposterols, a type of fatty acid, that have been found to block the action of 5-alpha reductase, an enzyme that plays a key role in the conversion of testosterone into DHT. The benefits of saw palmetto for testosterone seem to come from the fatty acid content it contains.
Besides, saw palmetto speeds up the breakdown of DHT, which is also vital for reducing DHT-induced health issues such as acne and hair loss. Moreover, saw palmetto has been found to lower the tissue uptake of DHT as well.
Overall, saw palmetto can hugely help in maintaining healthy testosterone levels and reducing the harmful effects of excessive DHT levels. This can help with many testosterone-related health conditions.
Let’s have a look at some common benefits of saw palmetto for testosterone-related issues:
Saw palmetto can help reduce the risk of enlarged prostate
The prostate gland is an integral part of the male reproductive system. It’s located in between the urethra and the bladder. An enlarged prostate or otherwise known as benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) is a condition in which the prostate gland grows too big and causes pressure on the bladder and urethra.
It’s assumed that imbalances in testosterone levels cause an enlarged prostate. Saw palmetto can help stop or slow the prostate’s unusual growth by restoring testosterone balance in a stable status, and thereby, can help prevent and manage symptoms of an enlarged prostate.
Saw palmetto can improve sexual function
Low testosterone levels have been linked to decreased sexual function and loss of libido in both men and women. By inhibiting the breakdown of testosterone, saw palmetto can help keep testosterone levels balanced and thereby, can help improve sexual function and desire for sex in both men and women.
Saw palmetto can help reduce hair loss
Excessive DHT induces hair loss in both men and women. In contrast, a healthy testosterone level is vital for normal hair growth. Saw palmetto has been found to be effective in reducing DHT-induced hair loss, by lowering the formation of DHT from testosterone. Saw palmetto sometimes promotes normal hair growth as well.
Saw palmetto can help reduce symptoms of PCOS
Polycystic ovarian syndrome, also known as PCOS, is a metabolic condition in women, which has been linked to hormonal imbalance and inflammation. Saw palmetto possesses both hormone-balancing and anti-inflammatory properties. It can help restore hormone balance and reduce inflammation and associated symptoms such as pelvic pain, bloating, and more.
How to use saw palmetto
The doses of saw palmetto are individual and differ from person to person depending on the personal health status. However, in general, clinicians most often recommend saw palmetto supplements in doses of 320 mg to 960 mg per day for adults by mouth for up to three years. Consider working with a professional natural medicine provider to determine the exact dose for your specific health status.
Precautions and side effects
Saw palmetto is generally safe for most people when taken as advised. Side effects are found occasionally in some people and they are typically mild and easily reversible. Some side effects may include headache, constipation, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, heartburn, bad breath, stomach pain, and dizziness.
Besides, saw palmetto may interact with certain supplements and medications such as blood thinners and birth control pills. Since it affects reproductive hormones like prolactin, pregnant and breastfeeding women should avoid using saw palmetto supplements. Therefore, it’s highly important to consult with a qualified naturopathic practitioner before using saw palmetto, especially if you have any existing health issues or are on medications.
Saw palmetto is a herb that has been used in traditional medicines for centuries. There are a number of potential benefits of saw palmetto for testosterone and its associated conditions ranging from reducing the risk of BPH to increasing libido to alleviating symptoms of PCOS. But it’s important to work with a professional healthcare provider to determine whether it is right for you.
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