Men's Health Through Traditional Arabic & Islamic Medicine Lens
Men’s health often ends up being an afterthought as the average man pays less attention to his wellbeing than the average woman. As a result, sadly men are more likely to experience chronic health conditions such as obesity, heart disease, diabetes, stroke, and depression. This is down to both biological and social factors, such as smoking, drinking, stress, lack of exercise, and an unhealthy diet. To make matters worse, men tend to be less willing to see a doctor or health professional for regularly checkups.
Subsequently, among the many conditions that often go untreated for far too long in men are all manner of reproductive problems. Among the elderly male population in particular, a common condition is benign prostatic hypertrophy (BPH) – where a small gland found near the prostate is bigger than usual – resulting in a need to empty the bladder more frequently but also making it harder to do so. This is a common complaint among men over the age of 50 and tends to worsen with age, often causing anxiety in the mistaken belief that it could be a malignant cancerous growth.
According to Traditional Arabic and Islamic Medicine (TAIM), BPH is thought to relate to an imbalance between the body’s four humors – blood; phlegm; yellow bile; and black bile. Each humor has its unique quality (temperament) such as hot, cold, dry, or moist. Benign prostatic enlargement is said to relate to excessive moistness. Factors thought to encourage the onset and development of BPH are exposure to a cold environments, and excessive intake of cold temperamental foods such as dairy products. Chronic constipation can also aggravate the condition.
From a TAIM perspective, the general guidelines for male reproductive conditions focus on maintaining a balanced diet and taking appropriate herbal supplements. A few nutritional recommendations for treating BPH worth mentioning include avoiding dairy products as well as white flour products, carbonated beverages, chocolate, refined sugar, and products containing food colouring. At Zulal Wellness Resort the focus is on wellness cuisine and as such dishes are gluten-free, dairy-free and sugar-free, and made with organic produce.
During a health and wellness consultation at Zulal, a TAIM specialist will find out your dominant humor and advise lifestyle recommendations according to your needs. The TAIM specialist will also recommend various appropriate therapies, as well as herbs from our apothecary to manage any health conditions.
A TAIM-inspired treatment at Zulal Wellness Resort which could aid in many men’s health-related conditions is cupping, known as hijama therapy. Cupping is one of the oldest methods devised to release toxins from the body, with many potential benefits such as pain relief, anti-inflammatory effects, and increased oxygen flow to the body’s organs.
At Zulal Wellness Resort the focus is on educating and empowering guests to take control of their health and achieve sustainable wellness by maintaining the practices learnt at the resort once back home. We encourage men to take better care of themselves by focusing on mind, body and spirit practices and, crucially, to go for regular checkups with their health professional.