a man sitting in front of a wooden board with a fillet of salmon, half and avocado, and an assortment of nuts

Erectile Dysfunction
and Nutrition

It's hard to go a day without the importance of healthy eating being on the news - Fast foods, sweets, fizzy drinks, ice creams, burgers and pizza are BAD while green vegetables, whole grain bread and fruit are GOOD.

For many people in their youth are simply able to absorb a bad diet, burning off junk carbs and calories with impunity and without any noticeable side effects.

But as we get older, our bodies start to complain and we notice the difference. The majority of people fret about the way they look (especially their waistline) and many suffer medical complications, including sexual issues including erectile dysfunction, because of what they eat or have eaten.

 

 

 

But what effect does nutrition have on your sexual performance?

There is a direct correlation between a poor diet and the onset of Erectile Dysfunction (ED).

Understanding this and managing your diet and other lifestyle factors will help you overcome ED problems.

 

 

 

a diagram contrasting a blood vessel with a large flow of red blood cells, versus with on with little flow

Improving The Functions of Your Blood Vessels

Having an erection is dependent on a healthy vascular system. In simple terms that is the system that carries the blood around your body delivering nutrients and oxygen to the body tissues and removing waste matter.

The same system carries an avalanche of blood to your penis causing an erection. Blood vessels can be damaged and impaired by a poor diet damaging the lining of blood vessels, known as the Endothelium. The Endothelium produces nitric oxide, which allows penile blood vessels to relax and allow a greater blood to flow into the penis.

Over time, poor diet causes this lining to lose its elasticity and blood vessels become narrower with fatty deposits and plaque. As a result, many men will no longer get full erections. This doesn't happen overnight, but over a sustained period of time.

Poor diet or lack of sufficient nutrition can cause ED by various other means as well. Poor diet often causes general health complications, and those health conditions can in turn lead to ED. Heart diseases, hypertension, diabetes, obesity all can all be exacerbated because of a poor diet. These conditions affect the general blood flow throughout the whole body, including the penis. The blood pathway can also get narrowed due to excessive fat, which is the usual case with obesity. Due to these issues, penile tissues can't get enough blood supply. It ultimately hampers men's ability to obtain and sustain strong and spontaneous erections.

Men with these kinds of medical issues are more likely to experience ED than others and poor diet is a trigger for these diseases.

Bad diet also decreases the nitric oxide (NO) level in men. Nitric oxide is vital to facilitate erections. Nitric oxide relaxes the corporal cavernosal smooth muscle tissue, which results in increased flow of blood in penile tissues. Lack of enough nutrition can lower nitric oxide by increasing insulin resistance. Insulin resistance increases the level of oxidative stress and inflammatory cytokines in endothelial cells, which affects the bioavailability of NO.

Lack of nutrition can also decrease the testosterone hormone level. Lack of this hormone can cause low energy, decreased ability to focus and low libido which means lack of sexual drive. All these mechanisms are also linked to ED.

If a man follows a diet that contains all the essential nutrients, then he increases his chances of having better erectile function as well as a healthy life in general. Switching to a nutritious diet usually improves endothelial function in men, it will also help in keeping blood pressure at a normal level, reduce inflammatory markers and decrease insulin resistance. Together these changes will significantly enhance men's erectile function.

So, in short, Erectile Dysfunction and Nutrition go hand-in-hand and a bad diet can be a substantial factor in accelerating the onset of erectile dysfunction.

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different food types a part of a Mediterranean diet

Foods That Help You Stay Erect

A Mediterranean diet has been associated with a lower incidence of erectile dysfunction.

A recent study into higher diet quality based on adherence to either a Mediterranean or Alternative Healthy Eating with emphasis on the consumption of vegetables, fruits, nuts, legumes, and fish or other sources of long-chain (n-3) fats, as well as avoidance of red and processed meats, was found to be associated with a lower risk of developing erectile dysfunction. (1) 

Ensuring you're getting regular exercise can also help prevent it. As pointed out in the study quoted above too much red meat, highly processed animal foods like bacon, fatty foods and junk carbohydrates are going to increase your chances of developing erectile dysfunction, whereas highly nutritious plant foods like broccoli, berries rich in antioxidants and unrefined foods will promote the health of blood vessels and nitric oxide production.

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a man in a grey cardigan sitting in an arm chair speaking with a practitioner

Lifestyle Changes That Can Help Improve Erectile Function

There are other lifestyle choices which can threaten your general health and lead to the risk of developing medical conditions like diabetes, cardiovascular issues, and obesity – each of these are bad for your erectile function. Smoking can cause several cardiovascular issues and in turn damage the blood pathways. Excessive consumption of alcohol decreases blood flow within the penis and is considered as a risk factor for several other medical disorders. Men who smoke and drink alcohol are more likely to suffer from ED than those who don't. So, abstaining from such habits is very important.

Seeing a change in ED after altering your diet depends on the individual, their age, and other aspects of their lifestyle such as, smoking, alcohol consumption or drug use.

If you don't see a change, please seek the advice of your GP or a specialist ED clinic.

 

 an illustration of a shockwave therapy procedure used to treat erectile dysfunction

Treatments at Mansmatters

For men with an impaired vascular system and suffering from erectile dysfunction, focused shockwave therapy is a proven method to repair and rejuvenate blood vessels and nerve tissues.

As we provide non-invasive solutions for ED, our focused shockwave therapy does not require any surgical procedures to work effectively. There are no major side-effects and men of all ages will get a satisfactory result from the treatment.

Other treatments we use to treat ED include focused Extracorporeal MagnetoTansduction Therapy (EMTT) and Functional Magnetic Stimulation. EMTT therapy uses a strong magnetic field to target the endothelial cells of blood vessels inside the penile tissues, promoting faster healing and regeneration of blood cells. The Magnetolith EMTT we use is able to produce a wide array of frequencies at different power levels allowing us to set the intensity of the magnetic field according to the requirements of each of our patients.

The Tesla Chair is another non-invasive treatment procedure that we provide, it uses Functional Magnetic Stimulation to treat ED. Functional Magnetic Stimulation triggers the motor nerve system of the body and stimulates muscles to get stronger and bigger.

It's a very effective and powerful way to treat ED and it is only possible to match its effectiveness if you were to repeatedly perform pelvic floor exercises throughout your whole life.

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Erectile Dysfunction and Nutrition FAQs

Is A Nutritious Diet Necessary for Better Erectile Function?

Good nutrition is important for your general health including erectile function. A nutritious diet helps all the body parts to function properly. A poor diet on the other hand can often lead to the development of various medical issues such as cardiovascular issues, diabetes, high cholesterol etc. Each of these issues, alone or in combination, can restrict the blood flow to your penis resulting in ED.

Is Poor Nutrition Directly Linked With ED?

A number of medical studies have proven the strong association between ED and poor nutrition. Poor nutrition can induce ED by various means. Men who consume a bad diet have more chance of experiencing ED than those who consume a nutritious diet.

How Does a Poor Diet Cause ED?

A poor diet can reduce the level of nitric oxide in the body which is essential for achieving strong erections and causes endothelial dysfunction. It also reduces the testosterone hormone which controls sexual urge. Hypertension, high cholesterol, heart issues and diabetes are all more likely due to a bad diet and are major risk factors for ED.

Which Foods Are Considered Bad for Erectile Function?

Highly processed meat, fatty foods, too much sugar, smoking and excessive alcohol consumption are major risk factors for the development of cardiovascular issues, diabetes, high cholesterol, and ED. Eating these foods over a period of time damages the blood vessels and reduces the blood flow inside the penis.

Which Foods Are Considered Good for Erectile Function?

Foods that are high in antioxidants, plant-based foods such as berries and unrefined foods improve the blood flow within the body and increase your Nitric Oxide production. These foods can contribute to improving erectile function.

Does The Negative Impact of a Poor Diet Start to Show?

In young men, the impact of a poor diet on their erectile function is unlikely to be felt right away, as their bodies can withstand this impact for some time. But over time, their bodies start to lose some of their fighting capability and the negative side-effects start to develop. That’s why as they get older, negative consequences of a bad diet start to show up.

How Can I Improve My Erectile Function Through Diet?

Make sure to consume a nutritious diet, exercise regularly, avoid smoking and excessive alcohol consumption. These things will keep you fit and maintain healthy a blood flow in the various parts of your body including your penis.

Will Following a Healthy Nutritious Diet Treat My ED?

It really depends on the individual. Diet is one contributing factor to good erectile function, not every man will react similarly to the same diet. However, if you follow a nutritious diet, you will have a greater chance of a better erectile function. If a poor diet over time has permanently damaged your blood vessels, then just altering your diet will not be enough for you and you will need the help of a specialist Erectile Dysfunction clinic.

Do You Treat ED Caused by Poor Diet?

We evaluate our patients thoroughly, find out the underlying causes of ED and then decide how we should approach this issue which will include changes to lifestyle and diet.

 

 

 

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