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Pumpkin seeds offer some unique health benefits for the prostate, especially for men who have benign prostatic hypertrophy (BPH). This condition, which involves enlargement of the prostate gland, commonly affects men 50 years and older. One thing that contributes to BPH is overstimulation of the prostate cells by testosterone and another hormone, dihydrotestosterone. The oil in pumpkin seeds can help prevent the hormones from triggering multiplication of prostate cells.
Pumpkin seed oil also contains carotenoids and omega-3 fatty acids. Research shows that men who have higher levels of carotenoids in their diet have a reduced risk of BPH.
Another nutrient found in pumpkin seeds is zinc, which is associated with prostate health. A recent study from the Linus Pauling Institute suggests that zinc may protect against the development of prostate cancer. So far, studies of the impact of zinc on BPH have had mixed results.