Can What You Eat or Drink Cause Erectile Dysfunction?

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Q: Can what you eat or drink cause erectile dysfunction?

A: When it comes to erectile dysfunction (ED), what you drink generally matters more than what you eat.

Alcohol is one of the biggest things we ingest that impacts erections. In our society, we typically have a drink, go out to dinner, and then come home and have intercourse.

But medicines for ED don’t work as well with alcohol or on a full stomach. So I advise guys to do the opposite: take erectile medication at 4:30 p.m., have some fun at 6 p.m., then have a drink and go out to dinner.

Regarding diet, there’s a significant correlation between our BMI and erections. High-fat diets can lead to blockages in the coronary arteries, and decrease the size of the iliac and other arteries supplying blood flow to your penis.

So a heart-healthy diet is also a prostate- and a penile-healthy diet. Besides eating well, getting proper exercise to stay in good shape will help.

—Urologist James Ulchaker, MD   

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