Beat Impotence with Healthy Lifestyle Changes

Medically reviewed in February 2022

If you're one of the 30 million American men dealing with erectile dysfunction (ED), regaining your power "down under" may be as simple as getting a prescription from your doctor. But don’t forget that there’s a pill-free way to eliminate ED: Get healthy. One study shows that healthy lifestyle habits really do improve performance in the bedroom.

Connecting ED and your total health
Researchers used standard questionnaires to assess the sex behaviors and interests of 800 randomly selected Australian men, ages 35 to 80. They also evaluated the men’s overall health, as well as their education, marital status and mood. The scientists noted that sexual function improved in men who changed their health habits for the better over the five-year study. On the other hand, men who didn't make healthy lifestyle changes were more likely to experience ED. The study was published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine.

Men may assume that impotence simply goes along with getting older, but the researchers point out that it’s really a reflection of a man’s health. The reason: ED is most often due to poor health of your blood vessels, which are responsible for providing blood to your penis when the time is right. ED mediations can increase that blood flow temporarily, but they don’t correct the root problem. Eating a healthy diet, staying trim through exercise and controlling your cholesterol all keep those vessels working their best (and they boost your heart health, too).

Change will do you good
If you're suffering from conditions such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol or diabetes, consider ED a warning sign that it’s time to clean up your health habits. You may find that once you're on the path to healthy living, everything else seems to fall back into place.

  • Make time to move more.
  • Eat smart and fight the flab.
  • Beat depression. Feeling sad every day isn't healthy for your love pump, either.

More On

Why Do Many Women in Long-Term Relationships Lose Their Desire?

video

Why Do Many Women in Long-Term Relationships Lose Their Desire?
As time goes on, relationships and roles change but that doesn't mean that women should put desire on the back burner. In this video, sex therapist Sa...
How Your Weight Affects Your Sex Life

article

How Your Weight Affects Your Sex Life
Excess baggage around your midsection—and anywhere else—could be weighing down your sex drive.
4 Signs You Might Have Sexual Dysfunction

slideshow

4 Signs You Might Have Sexual Dysfunction
They do a number on your sex life—and can point to even bigger health problems.
How Can Social Media Impact My Relationship with My Partner?

video

How Can Social Media Impact My Relationship with My Partner?
Spending more time on Facebook than face-to-face with your partner isn't ideal. In this video, sex therapist Ian Kerner discusses how social media can...
How Can I Overcome Insecurities to Be a Less Jealous Partner?

video

How Can I Overcome Insecurities to Be a Less Jealous Partner?
Watch as clinical psychologist and author Dr. Belisa Vranich discusses how a person can overcome insecurities to be a less jealous partner.