Although one or two drinks can get better your confidence in the bedroom, lots of men are well-known with the negative effects a night of heavy drinking can have on their capability to get an erection. In fact, it has been reported that men who rely on alcohol to help them perform are 60% to 70% more likely to suffer from erectile dysfunction. Alcohol is a depressant, which means it lowers blood flow around the body and can harm nerves, making it harder to enjoy sex. Anyone worried about impotence should avoid drinking too much, or even consider cutting it out altogether.
High cholesterol is when you have lots of a fatty substance in your blood. It can harm the blood vessels, leading to problems getting and maintaining an erection. Foods high in saturated fats like fatty cuts of red meat, poultry with the skin on, butter, cream and cheese can enlarge your cholesterol. You can get your levels of cholesterol checked by a doctor who will advise tips for changing your diet to keep it down.
Steer clear of too much cycling
While getting plenty of exercise can help potency, too much cycling can lead to erectile dysfunction. Too much pressure from the bike seat can damage vital blood vessels. Changing your bike seat can help, with narrow bike seats reportedly dropping blood flow to the penis by as much as 66%2. If you are a keen cyclist, make sure your bike seat is fitted properly, try standing up regularly while cycling, and wear padded shorts.
Eat a balanced diet
Ingredients in processed foods such as saturated fat, too much salt and added sugar are all known for being bad for your heart, making them detrimental to your blood flow, too. Eating too many of these foods can make it more hard for your blood to flow properly, leading to problems getting an erection. Make sure you are getting plenty of low fat/low refined sugar foods such as fruits and vegetables, whole grains and lean protein like poultry. Omega 3 is also important for a healthy heart. It’s more usually found in oily fish and eggs, so aim to eat two portions a week of either. A dietary consultation can help you to generate a diet plan that is right for you and your individual health needs.
Check your hormone levels?
If you are suffering from a lack of libido that’s impacting on your capability to get an erection, it could be worthwhile getting your hormone levels checked by the doctor. Testosterone is the male hormone that increases sex drive and it can dwindle as you get older. Approximately 15% to 25% of men over 65 reports to suffer from male impotency, and this can be down to lower testosterone in their blood4. If your testosterone levels are low, your doctor can recommend a practical answer such as hormone replacement therapy (HRT).
Get plenty of exercise
Exercise, particularly aerobic exercise, is another proven way of raising your blood flow. Any exercise that significantly enlarges your heart rate, like running, swimming, kick boxing and hiking is affective at keeping your circulation strong. Aim for a minimum of 2.5 hours a week and try to pick something you enjoy so it doesn’t feel like a chore. Keeping fit can also help to boost your confidence and beat anxiety – two issues that can lead to impotence.
Keep your blood pressure down
High blood pressure can also harm the blood vessels, often leading to erectile dysfunction. Being overweight is one of the main issues of high blood pressure, so try slimming your waistline to avoid impotence. Stress is also known to enlarge blood pressure, and if you’re feeling tense and anxious it’s likely that your confidence during sex will also drop. Speak to your doctor if you are struggling with stress to find ways of managing the pressures of everyday life.
Anxiety and depression/mental health
In younger men, anxiety is one of the main reasons of erectile dysfunction. Psychological problems can enlarge adrenaline, which make the blood vessels contract in order to direct blood to vital organs making it hard to get erection. Therefore, whether it’s directly connected to sex or caused by outside factors, feeling tense or depressed can affect your erection ability. If you have concerns about your mental health or suffer from anxiety or depression, consider getting cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) to help you tackle the problem.