Over the past few years it seems that everybody has become an expert in nutrition. We have seen countless celebrities hawking whatever diet they last tried. Most recently intermittent fasting seems to be popular, but Atkin’s, paleo, portion control and calorie restrictive diets have all had their day in the sun. When it comes to erections, anything that supports cardiovascular health would seem to benefit healthy blood flow to the penis. But one diet seems to have risen to the top of the list for a very specific reason.
Nitric oxide (NO) has been proven to have a big role in erections. It helps to relax the corpora cavernosa, and this increases the amount of blood getting into the penis. One diet is particularly high in polyphenols, which can help increase the availability of nitric oxide. That diet is the Mediterranean diet.
The Mediterranean diet is high in olive oil, legumes, fruits, vegetables and fish. Not only is this diet been shown to be beneficial for erections, it has proven to be useful for patients with cardiovascular disease.
Besides diet, a healthy lifestyle may help ward off erectile dysfunction. Adequate sleep, exercise, stress management and avoidance of excessive alcohol and any smoking can help prevent erectile dysfunction, or at least delay its onset.
Unfortunately, despite making healthy choices, most men will eventually be faced with erectile dysfunction. Eating right, exercising, staying fit will all help you delay erectile dysfunction, but, “Father Time is undefeated.”
Many men understandably will turn to medication initially for treatment of erectile dysfunction. Initially, for the vast majority, this is effective therapy. Unfortunately, it comes with some baggage. Up to 40% of men will eventually complain of some side effects. There’s one other dirty secret. The pills do not attack the root cause of erectile dysfunction. They may temporarily increase blood flow, but that stops as soon as the pill wears off. Because of their failure to attack the cause, pills always eventually stop working.
Over the past decade, specialists in sexual dysfunction have come to appreciate the efficacy and safety of shockwave therapy. Unlike pills, they actually increase the blood flow to the penis, relying upon the body’s ability to heal itself through regenerative processes. Urologists aren’t the only doctors to have harvested the power of shockwave therapy. Shockwaves are widely used in medicine. Even cardiologists use the technology to improve the blood flow to the heart.
Shockwave therapy isn’t for everyone. Patients who have advanced erectile dysfunction, and have not been sexually active for an extended period of time are much less likely to benefit. Patients who have had prior pelvic surgery, especially such as radical prostatectomy are unlikely to benefit. Patients who have early onset ED, especially those who have responded to pills but would prefer a more natural solution are the most likely to respond. Other patients who find that the pills are not working as well as they used to may also find themselves still requiring pills, but responding better than they had before.