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Sexual Function and High Cholesterol–Revealing Connection

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High cholesterol and erectile dysfunction are two problems that commonly plague men, especially as they move into their older years. However, what many men do not realize is that these two conditions are closely linked; excessive levels of cholesterol can seriously impair sexual function and reduce men’s sex drive. The good news is that reducing levels of bad cholesterol can significantly improve sex drive and performance; with the right attention to diet, exercise and penis health, men can enjoy greater stamina, as well as longer, stronger erections.

Four ways that cholesterol affects sexual function

1.    Reduced blood flow. Cholesterol is a fatty substance, almost like wax. There are two types of cholesterol that are produced by the body and/or consumed in the diet. HDL (or “good”) cholesterol is important in terms of hormone production, as well as in regulating levels of LDL (or “bad”) cholesterol. High levels of LDL cholesterol can lead to serious health complications when it accumulates in the arteries, forming plaques that restrict blood flow. While this is dangerous to heart health in general, clogged arteries are specifically detrimental to penis function, as they result in insufficient blood flow being directed to the penis.

2.    Reduced levels of nitric oxide. The ability to achieve and maintain an erections depends largely on a chemical called nitric oxide, which is produced in the body and used to signal the blood vessels to expand, allowing for increased blood flow. Cholesterol interferes with the body’s ability to release this chemical into the blood stream, affecting erectile function.

3.    Reduced testosterone levels. Clogged arteries also reduce blood flow to the testicles, meaning that they are less able to produce testosterone. Since this hormone controls sex drive, as well as promoting sexual stimulation, reduced levels lead to reduced libido and loss of male function. Lower levels of testosterone can also leave men feeling tired, irritable and less able to cope with daily life.

4.    Medication. Prescription medications known as statins are commonly used to treat high cholesterol. However, statins have a negative effect on erectile function, so although they might help to lower cholesterol levels, men who are taking them may still experience loss of function. While it is important to continue taking medications prescribed by the doctor, it is also a good idea to talk to a qualified health professional about lifestyle changes and other alternatives to help lower cholesterol levels naturally.

Combatting erectile dysfunction by maintaining a healthy penis

Lowering cholesterol levels and improving cardiovascular health are essential when it comes to restoring adequate function. All men should work toward a healthy lifestyle by consuming a diet that is high in fiber, lean proteins, and fruits and vegetables; and that is low in unhealthy fats and added cholesterol. Regular exercise is also key to keeping cholesterol levels at optimum levels, as well as promoting overall health. Quitting smoking is also urged for all men, as those who smoke tend to have narrower, less resilient arteries than non-smokers.

In addition to these measures, attention to the penis itself is essential. Applying a high-quality penis vitamin cream  (most health professionals recommend Man 1 Man Oil) on a daily basis can provide the nourishment the penis needs to stay in business. For instance, vitamin B5 helps to promote dilation of the circulatory tissue, while L-arginine boosts nitric oxide levels in the body. In addition, vitamin C is needed to maintain the structure of the blood vessels and to simulate erections. Applying these nutrients topically allows them to be absorbed directly into the penile skin, bypassing the digestive tract where they can be eliminated or routed to other parts of the body.

For additional information on most common penis health issues, tips on improving penis sensitivity, and what to do to maintain a healthy penis, visit: John Dugan is a professional writer who specializes in men's health issues and is an ongoing contributing writer to numerous online web sites.

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