There May Be More at Stake Than Your Sex Life
Make a list of conditions that men do not want to have and impotence or erectile dysfunction (ED) will likely be numero uno. Also high on such a hit parade would be heart attacks and stroke.
Research has now demonstrated that your penis may be the best stress test of potential impending heart disease, hypertension, diabetes, depression and even stroke. It has been shown that men who are about to have a heart attack experience ED weeks and even months prior to their heart attack.
Research has shown that ED may be a warning sign that other potentially devastating diseases such as heart attack, diabetes and strokes are on the horizon for those who don't take the time to pursue an evaluation of their ED.
Why is this so?
It makes perfect sense. The fatty deposits in your blood that result from such bad habits as the typical American Diet block arteries-any arteries including the blood supply to penis. When such deposits build up in the arteries leading to the heart the ED result is a heart attack.
But these fatty deposits also clog up the arteries that bring blood to the penis. They gradually lessen the amount of blood that can get through to cause an erection until there isn't enough flow to achieve an erection adequate for sexual intimacy.
Statistics show that one out of three men over the age of 50 will have problems with impotence. And it's estimated that clogged arteries are responsible for nearly half of all the impotence seen in mean after the age of 40.
You need to know that these blocked penile arteries are a tip-off that other arteries around the body including your heart are also closing off. That makes ED a major, previously under-recognized risk factor for impending heart disease and stroke.
A recent study demonstrated that nearly 50% of the men with ED had reduced blood flow to the penis and this predicts future problems with the heart. Nearly one-quarter of the men with poor blood supply to the penis had either a heart attack ole r a stroke. This is in marked contrast to the less than 5% of the men with normal blood supply to the penis who suffered a heart attack or a stroke. What is the bottom line: if you have ED you are at high risk for developing vascular disease in other parts of your boy such as your heart, kidneys, or brain.
I suggest using your penis as a stress test for other vital organs of your body such as your heart. If you are experiencing ED, I suggest you see you your physician to see if you may have preexisting vascular disease in other areas of your body. You may find that you have a preventable situation and can also find a solution to restore your potency and reverse the ED. The truth is that men who experience ED should seek medical treatment just as much as those men who have chest pain or angina to prevent a heart attack. Perhaps we should consider men with ED to have penile angina, since this is highly predictable symptom for impending heart disease.
It's not your fault
Unfortunately many physicians often have trouble or are uncomfortable discussing sexual function with their patients. The end result of bad health habits should be a great motivator for making some healthy lifestyle changes. However, a sexual history is an important part of a complete medical evaluation. The reality is that ED could be a great motivating factor for making some healthy lifestyle changes
What's the bottom line?
Impotence and heart disease could be the end result of your bad health habits and should be a great motivator for making some heart-healthy lifestyle changes. If you don't change your heart-clogging habits you risk impotence. Once vascular disease starts shutting down your sexual function, you are at high risk for other severe vascular catastrophes such as heart attack and stroke.
Shifting gears and restoring your potency
Of all of the risk factors for ED, smoking is the biggest. Smoking contributes to two different types of erection problems. First, it decreases the flow of blood to the penis, making it difficult to achieve an erection. Second, it also damages the veins leading out of the penis, allowing the little blood that makes it into the penis to escape and making it difficult for a man to hold or maintain his erection.
By affecting both the ability of the penis to fill with blood and its ability to retain the blood necessary to keep an erection, smoking delivers a one-two punch that is a real knockout to a man's potency.
Living Right Is The Best Protection
Living right may undo some of the damage that causes impotence. For some people, a low fat, vegetarian diet and other lifestyle changes may do more than just halt progression of artery-clogging plaque buildup. Such good health habits may also be able to actually reverse some of the blockage and open those arteries back up for business.
There are several reported studies that have documented the partial clearing of clogged arteries with diet and lifestyle changes along. Those patients who consumed a diet that was heavy on vegetables and contained only 10 percent fat, were most likely to see a reversal of sexual function and a restoring of their potency.
One of the most incredible parts of the research was the emphasis on stress reduction. Certainly, this is not part of a typical cardiac rehabilitation program, the men in the study were given an exercise program and trained in stress management techniques. It is interesting that those men who maintained the strict vegetarian diet and participated in the stress management program saw their cholesterol levels improve and they also achieved a serious reduction in the blockage of their coronary arteries. The offending blockage to their coronary arteries was significantly reduced and thus reduced the risk of serious heart attack.
It certainly makes sense that anything that helps unblock one set of vessels will have the same impact on arteries elsewhere in the body such as the blood supply to the penis with a result of restoring potency.
Take Home Message
Men must understand that they're taking risk with their potency when they engage in poor lifestyle habits such as poor diet, lack of exercise, and smoking. If you change your bad habits, you can power back into your potency
Reprinted with permission from Dialog Medical, dialogmedical.com.
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