If you or your loved one is having trouble in the bedroom. Then rest assured you’re not alone. Studies suggest that:
- 15% of men between 40 and 59 years of age
- 45% of men in their 60s
- 70% of men over 70 years of age.
report some degree of erectile dysfunction.
The estimates are that it is wildly under reported, as most men don't want to talk about it. They feel embarrassed and that it undermines their manhood.
Erectile Dysfunction is classified as a man not being able to maintain an erection long enough for sexual intercourse.
Interestingly this condition is often referred to as "the canary in the coal mine for heart disease". This is because it indicates that there is a major problem with blood flow and the cardiovascular system.
The artery to the penis is smaller than the arteries to the heart. Unsurprisingly it is often the first to get clogged. Thus issues with sustaining an erection is a sign of issues with the larger arteries.
A Mayo clinic study found that men with Erectile Dysfunction are 80% more likely to develop heart disease compared to men without it. Plus those aged 40-49 with ED are twice as likely to develop cardiovascular disease as those without. The majority of men faced with this problem want an immediate fix.
However if you want a long term solution the key is to find the root cause and treat that rather than take a pill. The issue with taking one of the over the counter medications is that they can be dangerous.
Whilst they temporarily fix the problem and improve dilation of the arteries in the penis along with arms and legs they don’t get to the root cause. The issue is that blood flow increases to these extremities but decreases in the brain and heart.
Hence why some of the side effects of these medications include hearing and vision loss. Unfortunately these drugs do nothing to overcome the problem of cardiovascular disease and plaque inside the arteries that prevents blood flow will continue to grow.
So it’s critical that you assist your body to improve your cardiovascular health. This in turn can help with performance in the bedroom.
So we’re going to explore 6 easy ways to address the symptoms of erectile dysfunction. Plus explain how improving the production of one critical molecule can play an important role in helping to resolve the problem
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To improve libido and the ability to perform in the bedroom there are numerous things to take into consideration.
- optimizing blood flow
- improving arterial health
- ensuring hormones are well balanced.
Many of the issues causing decreased blood flow and poor arterial health tie into hormonal issues. Examples of these are; lack of exercise, obesity and poor nutrition.
Furthermore, erectile dysfunction can be caused by medication, smoking and excessive alcohol consumption.
It’s important to understand that when a man has an erection this is caused by physical stimulation. However if there isn't enough nitric oxide to dilate the blood vessels, it can be difficult to sustain an erection. Factors that can play role in this condition are;
- High blood pressure
- As well as stress and anxiety.
Increasing your blood flow is a key aspect of getting erectile dysfunction under control. Blood flow is improved by the release of something called Nitric oxide. The body knows that this is a crucial molecule and it has two pathways which enable it's production. This is through nitrates and adequate levels of the amino acid L-arginine.
Now let’s discover how we achieve adequate levels of these key molecules and get to our 6 ways to prevent erectile dysfunction.
Number 6 Get adequate L-Arginine
This is an amino acid and eating foods high in it can be a key aspect of improving sexual function. Studies indicate that a supplement of 2 to 5 grams of arginine helps with symptoms of erectile dysfunction.
L-arginine is also helpful for
- Lowering blood pressure
- Controlling blood sugar in diabetics
- And has been used to help treat heart disease
However one word of caution regarding supplementing with this, is that if you have Herpes it can increase the likelihood of an outbreak. If you find this occurring you can supplement with lysine or take an antiviral to prevent outbreaks.
Foods high in this amino acid are:
- Lean meats
- And Dark Leafy greens.
Interestingly dark leafy greens are also high in nitrates which is the other pathway used to help produce nitric oxide.
This leads me onto the next strategy to improve erectile dysfunction symptoms which is to consume beets.
Number 5 Eat Beets
Beets are one of the highest forms of nitrates which help improve the production of nitric oxide. Hence they can help improve blood flow to the penis as it assists blood vessel dilation.
Furthermore beets are a great source of fiber which is important for weight reduction and helping prevent cardiovascular disease.
Additionally beets are abundant in vitamins and minerals such as:
- Vitamin C
- And Potassium
The latter two play a key role in reducing blood pressure. Another major risk factor for erectile dysfunction and cardiovascular disease.
This leads me onto another key nutrient that helps the body produce nitric oxide
Number 4 Consume Folate Rich Foods
Aside from providing nitric oxide these also provide your body with an essential source of folate.
Folate, which is often taken in the form of Folic acid, assists the body to make nitric oxide. This is likened to the ignition for an erection.
Interestingly a large review looking at various studies found that men who had erectile dysfunction had lower levels of folate in their blood.
In 2 studies they compared patients erectile dysfunction before getting folic acid and after getting it. They gave the participants a supplement daily for 3 months. They found that the patients had a significant decrease in the severity of their erectile dysfunction after taking the supplement.
Foods that are rich in Folate include:
- And beef liver
So be sure to consume these foods, as not only will they provide you with folate but also:
- Vitamins and minerals
Increasing your intake of these will also help improve your health and specifically your cardiovascular health.
Regarding folate if you want to add in a supplement then talk to your doctor first as folate is not advised when taking certain medications.
Another key nutrient to help prevent erectile dysfunction is number 3 on our list
This nutrient is critical for a healthy immune system as well as hormone production. As we have already discussed, hormones have a major role in this condition. And stress is a big part of the puzzle when it comes to optimizing hormone function. The adrenal glands create hormones called DHEA and cortisol. These help us deal with stress. If we don’t manage stress this can have a knock on effect on sexual performance. DHEA is an essential hormone for libido. Deficiencies in zinc can cause problems with adrenal function. Ensuring you have optimal intake of zinc is essential. Foods rich in zinc include:
- Wheat germ
- Pumpkin seeds
- Dark chocolate
- And lean beef from free-range, grass fed cattle.
If you don’t eat enough of these foods then you may want to discuss adding in a supplement with your health practitioner.
Number 2 Exercise
According to one Harvard study, walking for just 30 minutes a day saw a 41% drop in risk for erectile dysfunction.
Plus a 2018 review found that those who did 40 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise 4 times a week for a 6 month period had reduced erectile dysfunction.
Being physically active is a great way to improve sexual function. It not only improves blood flow, but aids with relaxation which in turn can help with hormone imbalances.
Exercise also helps the production of nitric oxide so is a key aspect to improving this condition.
Furthermore, including weight-bearing exercise can improve the production of the hormone testosterone. This hormone is a significant factor in erectile strength and libido.
The fact that exercise can help with weight loss shows what an important role it plays. Especially when we consider that; a man with a 42-inch waist is 50% more likely to have erectile dysfunction than one with a 32-inch waist.
Part of the issue is that excess fat interferes with the release of hormones.
But we’re about to reveal our number 1 way to prevent erectile dysfunction, this food has been found to help curb appetite and improve hormones.
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Number 1 Eat Pomegranate
Did you know pomegranate could be the ultimate food for improving your sex life.
It can help:
- Support weight loss
- Improve blood pressure
- Lower triglycerides
- Lower inflammation
- Help to clear arteries
- And boost testosterone.
A Scottish Study found that individuals who were given a glass of pomegranate juice daily for 2 weeks had an average of 24% increase in testosterone.
Having good testosterone levels helps improve sex drive which is part of the problem when it comes to erectile dysfunction.
Furthermore this fruit helps improve blood flow, and production of nitric oxide.
Additionally, pomegranate is high in vitamin C.
Vitamin C plays a crucial role in the production of nitric oxide (NO) by converting nitrates to nitric oxide (NO).
A 2005 Italian study found an improvement in nitric oxide levels and a decrease in oxidant damage in all blood vessels after consumption of pomegranate juice.
One of the critical things about this fruit is that it has been found to help clear arteries.
This is critical for maintaining a healthy erection.
A 2004 Israeli study found drinking pomegranate juice daily reversed plaque build up in the carotid arteries by 13% in just 3 months and up to 35% in one year.
Pomegranates have three times more antioxidants than even red wine and green tea.
This means it can help protect your cells, which helps prevent chronic diseases. So if you want to improve erectile dysfunction symptoms and your cardiovascular health then be sure to consume pomegranate juice or eat the fruit.
Just a word of caution some store bought juices may have added sugar so be sure to use one that is 100% pure.
That sums up our top tips on preventing Erectile dysfunction.
Let our community know in the comments below which one most surprised you.
Make sure to stay tuned to Heart Disease Code to discover more wonderful nutrition and wellness insights. And once again, don’t leave without grabbing both of your two free gifts – just click that link below.
Thanks for watching, have a heart healthy day!