As a urologist, I see a lot of male patients with erectile dysfunction, or ED—the inability to achieve or sustain an erection suitable for sexual intercourse. There are many factors that can cause ED, such as medications, chronic illnesses, poor blood flow to the penis, cigarette smoking, drinking too much alcohol or simply being too tired.
Simple lifestyle changes can help ED, including eating certain foods
These include losing weight, drinking less alcohol, quitting smoking, adjusting your medication and engaging in regular exercise. But did you know that certain foods can actually help ED?
Many foods have been shown to be effective for some men with ED
I’ve listed some of the best ones here. Try them and see if they work for you!
- Oysters. Yes it really is true: oysters can boost men’s testosterone levels, which can help with sex drive. Oysters also contain zinc, a nutrient your body needs. Before eating oysters, however, make sure you know where they came from and that they’re cooked properly.
- Coffee. Caffeine helps increase blood flow, which helps create and sustain an erection. One study found that men who drank two or three cups of caffeine a day were less likely to have erectile dysfunction. Many teas and sports drinks also have caffeine (try to avoid sodas).
- Dark Chocolate. Chocolate is rich in flavanols, plant nutrients that can increase blood flow and lower blood pressure. It also helps your body make more nitric oxide (an ingredient in many ED medications), which can help with erections.
- Garlic. Garlic in your diet may help keep your arteries healthy and clear, especially as you age. If plaque forms on the walls of the arteries, blood flow could be cut off or reduced, which can affect your ability to have erections.
- Fish. Salmon and other fatty fish (sardines, fresh albacore tuna and mackerel) are great sources of omega-3 fatty acids. They lower your blood pressure and risk of heart attack and blood clots, as well as boost your supply of nitric oxide.
- Peppers. The chemical properties in cayennes, jalapenos, habaneros and other peppers that give them their heat also relaxes the arteries, which helps blood flow to the heart and other organs, including the penis. Chilies can also help lower blood pressure and cholesterol and prevent blood clots.
If you are experiencing erectile dysfunction, please contact us
If you think you have ED and would like to know more about its causes and treatment, please contact us at Westchester Health to see one of our urology specialists. Together, we’ll map out the best treatment plan for your particular condition.