Is Erectile Dysfunction Linked to Heart Disease?

Sex is a big part of many adult lives. Typically, many of us look forward to it. In about 9 months or so, we may see an increase in births as a result of being confined in our homes now because of COVID-19.

Unfortunately, circumstances may not always work in everyone’s favor when it comes to sexual activity. The mood is right, but nothing happens.  As a result, there is frustration and sometimes embarrassment. Why does this happen?

There are more than 3 million cases of erectile dysfunction (ED)in the United States. Approximately 46 percent of adults have hypertension.  Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading cause of death in the U.S.  Is there a link between CVD and ED? The answer is that erectile dysfunction is a sign of cardiovascular disease.  Many men believe that it’s psychological or age. Diabetes also plays a role in ED because of damage to nerves and blood vessels, but cardiovascular disease is the first indicator. 

Viagra (siladenafil citrate) is also prescribed for pulmonary hypertension, which is also an indicator that there is a strong correlation.  You can also think about it in this way: if the heart is not functioning properly, meaning pumping blood to all of the vital organs, an adequate amount of blood will not be able to reach the penis.  So now that you see that there is a link, what can you do about erectile dysfunction? 

One of The Best Vegan Memes is from James Cameron: “I’d love to put Viagra out of business, just spreading the word on plant-based eating.”. Plant-based eating may be tough for some men. You’d like a juicy steak or hot wings sometimes. However, diet plays a huge role in your health. Eating little or no meat would definitely be a good place to start. Also, processed foods and fast food are not the best choices either. A whole food plant-based diet has been proven to be the healthiest.  Here are some plant-based recipes for ideas about eating healthier.  In addition, smoking, stress, and alcohol consumption are also contributing factors to ED.  There are always side effects associated with prescription medications.

Health coaching can help many men get a handle on their “bedroom” issues. If a man is showing signs of a chronic illness like heart disease or diabetes, talking with a health coach may answer questions and alleviate anxiety.

Benefits of Maca Root

Until recently, I hadn’t heard of maca root.  I was working out with a friend. (Conveniently, she has exercise equipment in her basement). She showed me a bottle of powdered maca root that she had purchased from GNC; the label said that it was good for energy and libido. It actually dates back to ancient Incan history. I was intrigued. I tasted some of her grilled broccoli seasoned with maca powder; it was very flavorful, like stir-fry broccoli.

When I researched it further, I saw that it has lots of benefits for both men and women.

  1. Erectile Dysfunction and Fertility. As previously mentioned, maca root has been used historically to boost male libido. It improves sperm count, which improves fertility. One culprit of erectile dysfunction is heavy alcohol consumption; however there can be other factors such as chronic illnesses (i.e. diabetes), stress, medication, or injury.
  2. Endurance.  In addition to increasing testosterone, maca also increases endurance for athletes. As your energy levels increase, so does your endurance. (As an addition, I’m sure it will help your sexual stamina as well).
  3. Menopause and Menstruation. Whether we are childbearing or middle age, as women, we know that both of these can be a pain to bear (pun intended). Maca root helps to balance hormone levels and alleviate symptoms such as menopausal hot flashes, menstrual cramps, PMS, fatigue, and heavy or irregular cycles.
  4. Acne. Since most acne outbreaks are hormonal, it makes sense that maca would clear up this issue dramatically.
  5. Depression.  People that suffer from depression have low levels of serotonin in their bodies. Maca has been shown to increase these levels. Again, it all relates to energy. When you suffer from depression, you have little or no energy. It is difficult to get out of bed even if there is a reason to do so.

Maca is also called “Peruvian ginseng“. If you decide to try it, it is available in both capsules and powder form at any health food or vitamin store.