A new study says flavonoids can help with erectile dysfunction. By eating certain foods, like brightly colored fruits and vegetables, rich in flavonoids, men could be able to easily cut their risk for the common sexual disorder. The study says that those flavonoid rich foods can help with prevention of erectile dysfunction as well. The study followed over 25,000 men for more than two decades, and was published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, by the University of East Anglia in the United Kingdom. The study also found that the risk of erectile dysfunction was reduced when men ate more fruit in general.
Flavonoids are the compounds that pigment fruits and vegetables. Beyond this new study, flavonoids have been found to have many health benefits. In particular, they have been highlighted to have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Antioxidants are compounds that neutralize free radicals, which are unstable molecules that can cause tissue destruction. Free radicals are produced normally during metabolism and are actually used to kill viruses and bacteria by our own immune cells.
While our body is equipped to handle small quantities of free radicals, environmental agents such as cigarette smoke, radiation and pollution are sources of additional free radicals. When the body natural defenses are exhausted, the unstable molecules become destructive. The damage accumulates with age and has been implicated in disease states ranging from Alzheimer’s disease to cancer. Antioxidants, however, are capable of defusing the free radicals and transforming them into inert stable compounds, which are harmless.
Furthermore, flavonoids found in fruits like blueberries are high in fiber, which helps keeps you full longer and promotes balanced cholesterol and heart health. In one animal study, researchers found that substituting just 2 percent of a rat’s diet with blueberries could prevent metabolic syndrome and cardiovascular disease. We see similar benefits, which pour over into erectile function in this study.
The study, as mentioned, showed that a bit more than 3 portions of flavonoid rich fruit per week was associated with a 14% reduction in risk of heart disease, which very closely related to heart erectile function. Many doctors believe that erections can be used as a barometer for heart health, and here is another study that shows their close relationship.
In the study, the biggest effect was seen in men who consumed the highest amount of flavonoids and were physically active. In these men, the risk of erectile dysfunction was reduced by 21%.
As the results show, men should be following a healthy diet rich in colorful fruits and vegetables, as well as follow a moderate exercise regimen. Simple lifestyle changes could make a big difference in quality of life for those men who suffer from erectile dysfunction. This would be a good alternative to prescription drugs for the condition.