About Erectile Dysfunction (ED)
Erectile dysfunction (ED) is defined as the inability to achieve or maintain and erection. It’s estimated that nearly 50% of men over the age of 40 suffer from mild to moderate ED. It’s a difficult and embarrassing subject for most men to deal with and consequently they either don’t get the help they need or they turn to expensive prescription drugs that may have some harsh side effects. The good news is that there are a lot of natural remedies that have been shown to work that don’t have those unwanted side effects.
What Can Cause ED?
As with any health problem it’s important to look at the basic terrain of your life. A sedentary lifestyle full of stress and a diet full of sugar, fats and preservatives is your worst enemy if you want to have good health and a vibrant sex life. ED is often a side effect of this kind of lifestyle and the health issues that go along with it. Hormones and libido are very reactive to everything else in your life so the first thing to take a look at is your diet, stress and exercise levels. Obesity, high blood sugar and blood pressure all can lead to ED. So can leading a very stressful life. Moderate exercise (exercising to extremes can also cause ED) and adopting a healthier diet full of vegetables, fruits, lean protein and healthy fats can increase libido and sexual function. Dealing with your emotions and stress in a healthy way through meditation, yoga, talking to a professional or your significant other if it’s a relationship-based stress/anxiety issue will also make a big difference. If you are constantly stressed, your body is constantly in fight or flight mode. A body in fight or flight mode will turn off every unnecessary function like your digestion and your sex hormones. Everyone benefits from relaxation, fun and laughter. Make sure you have a good amount of that in your life.
Natural Remedies for ED
Along with exercise & stress/anxiety management, there are also some foods and dietary supplements that can help get your body back into balance and working better. Here are a few suggestions that have been researched and found to help both mild & moderate levels of ED.
- A diet high in fiber that includes green leafy vegetables, seeds and nuts will increase your intake of Vitamin E, Selenium and zinc. All of which have been found to help your hormone balance and blood flow. Avoiding too much caffeine, alcohol and unhealthy trans fats. All of these can cause inflammation, interfere with hormone balance and increase your risk of heart disease as well as ED.
- DHEA is a hormone naturally produced in our bodies that can be depleted as we age or with excess stress. It helps balance cortisol as well as your sex hormones and has been shown in studies to help with ED. BioSom spray is an easy to take liquid form of DHEA.
- MACA root is an adaptogen herb that balances hormones and may also act as an aphrodisiac to help increase sexual desire.
- L-arginine improves blood flow and increases vessel dilation. Supplements such as Argincor and Arginine Plus are good sources of L-arginine.
- Pine Bark Extract found in Oligopin by Nutr-Dyn is a good source of antioxidants and compounds that help dilate blood vessels. A recent study has shown combining L-arginine with pine bark extract is extremely effective for improving erectile function.
- Testralin by Metagenics is designed to support healthy testosterone levels in men and benefit reproductive health. It features a combination of ingredients such as zinc, selenium, turmeric, and vitamins that work together to increase male sexual health.
- HisSynergy by Metagenics is another supplement specifically designed to support men’s sexual function and libido as well as their stress resilience. It’s always a good idea to consult a health professional when you have an issue such as ED to rule out and/or get support for any other health concerns that may be contributing to the issue.
It’s always a good idea to consult a health professional when you have an issue such as ED to rule out and/or get support for any other health concerns that may be contributing to the issue.
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Dr. Ron Ledoux is a licensed Chiropractor from the midwest who has been practicing since 2001. He’s also certified in clinical nutrition and has extensive training in nutritional therapies and is enthusiastic about educating and offering natural health care to his patients and the community.