We all have insecurities, and it’s okay if you feel there’s room for sexual improvement. Whether you’re struggling with erectile dysfunction (ED) or grappling with a low libido, there are a number of actions you can take to increase vitality in the bedroom.
With that, here are five science-backed habits that can help boost sexual performance in men:
The truth is that stress can make it challenging to maintain an erection. This is because chronic anxiety elevates the stress hormone cortisol in the body, which suppresses the libido.
Though stress is a natural part of life, and we all deal with it to some extent, the way we manage it can make a real impact – including on our sex life. This, according to the Journal of Sexual Medicine, is where mindfulness may come in.
By adopting mindfulness-based strategies to manage stress, men can work to mitigate their sexual performance struggles. Meditating for 20 minutes each day, exploring a new hobby, speaking with a therapist or focusing on physical sensations during sex (rather than your anxious thoughts) can help.
Are you eating a lot of sugar or refined grains? You may want to rethink that.
While you don’t need to eliminate these ingredients from your diet entirely, limiting your consumption of processed foods can improve your sexual and overall health.
Instead, you’ll want to opt for fruit, vegetables, whole grains and fish. The latter are full of healthy omega-3 fatty acids, which have been found to enhance sexual performance.
It’s also essential that you eat enough vitamin D. Milk, yogurt, eggs, cheese and canned tuna are all rich in vitamin D – so, according to a 2016 study associating ED with vitamin D deficiency – you might want to add these items to your shopping list.
Are you getting enough exercise?
Research shows that consistent physical activity may be the ED antidote you’ve been waiting for.
In fact, one study involving 32,000 men above the age of 50 revealed that frequent vigorous exercise could result in a 30% lower risk of erectile dysfunction.
Note that it doesn’t matter how you move, so long as you break a sweat. Taking long walks or scenic jogs, engaging in group classes or sports, visiting the gym or even rock-climbing are all viable options.
Researchers have found that certain herbal remedies can help to improve sexual satisfaction – especially where ED is concerned. In 2018, experts published a review of 24 trials focused on using dietary herbal supplements to treat erectile dysfunction.
They found that ginseng resulted in substantial improvements, and that maca root revealed early positive benefits. Even a type of pine called Pinus pinaster was shown to alleviate sexual performance issues.
Another study found that the Mediterranean plant Tribulus terrestris may be an effective treatment for erectile dysfunction as well.
Before trying herbal remedies, be sure to speak with your doctor – particularly if you are worried about potential side effects or interactions with other medications you might be taking.
In many cases, open and honest communication can make all the difference in improving men’s sexual health.
Talking to your partner about the performance issues you may face can help to reduce stress – which, as we learned, will mitigate challenges in your sex life.
If you still have questions about your sexual health, please connect with a healthcare professional. They can offer guidance on the above habits, provide valuable information on drugs and other resources and get you on a path to a more fulfilling sex life.