Erectile dysfunction affects almost half of all males over the age of 40. At the same time, the obesity rate for men in the United States is somewhat higher than 40%. It’s no surprise that several million guys fall into both categories.
There is a strong link between the two disorders, and being overweight or obese is a major risk factor for developing erectile dysfunction. Prescription ED drugs are the most common way to treat erectile dysfunction, but they do not address underlying causes or prevent ED from occurring again.
Weight loss may be effective in treating erectile dysfunction in men who are considerably overweight.
What Exactly Is Erectile Dysfunction?
Erectile dysfunction is Defined as the incapacity or difficulty in achieving or maintaining a hard adequate erection for intercourse.
While there is no single, conclusive cause of erectile dysfunction, there are numerous risk factors that enhance the likelihood of it occurring. Some are physical, while others are psychological, such as stress, sadness, and anxiety.
It’s natural to encounter erectile dysfunction on occasion, but if it becomes more frequent or a regular occurrence, it’s time to see a doctor.
Extra Weight Puts You at Risk
It should come as no surprise that carrying extra weight can have a number of detrimental implications on your overall health. Body mass index, or BMI, is one of the simplest evaluation techniques.
The height and weight of an adult man or woman are used to calculate body composition or body fat. According to health experts, the ideal range is between 18.5 and 24.9, with any figure greater than 25 indicating an overweight composite and any number greater than 30 signifying obesity.
Men with a BMI between 25 and 30 are 1.5X more likely to have erectile dysfunction than those with a normal BMI, according to the study. Men with BMIs more than 30 are three times as likely to develop ED.
Furthermore, being overweight increases your chances of acquiring the following disorders, all of which have been linked to ED:
Diabetes Mellitus type 2
Obesity is considered a major risk factor for the development of type 2 diabetes since carrying extra weight can lead to increased insulin resistance.
Diabetes is also a major risk factor for erectile dysfunction due to the nerve damage that commonly happens as a result of the disease. In fact, men with type 2 diabetes are twice as likely as women to have erectile dysfunction. Almost half of all diabetic males will develop erectile dysfunction within five to ten years of being diagnosed.
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The greater the body’s weight, the greater the strain on the cardiovascular system. Obese men’s hearts work harder to pump blood to their extremities, and obese people require more blood to give oxygen and critical nutrients throughout the body. Obese people have greater cholesterol and thermogenesis, making blood flow even more challenging.
All of these factors interact to cause a significant increase in blood pressure, which is also a key risk factor for erectile dysfunction. Erections require a strong and steady flow of blood to the penis, thus anything that harms the cardiovascular system harms erections.
Stress Due to Oxidative Conditions
Obesity is also known to cause persistent oxidative stress throughout the body as a result of a free radical imbalance. These unstable atoms cause significant damage to the body’s cells, tissues, and muscles, including those in the penis. Furthermore, stress can diminish the generation and availability of nitric oxide, a vital chemical messenger that aids in the relaxation of smooth muscles in the penis and the expansion of blood vessels, allowing the erection process to occur. These problems can lead to severe erectile dysfunction.
What Is the Relationship Between Weight and Erectile Dysfunction?
There has been a lot of research done on the connection between fat and erectile dysfunction. According to the findings, overweight or obese men had a 30% to 90% increased likelihood of developing erectile dysfunction than individuals in the ideal weight range.
Obesity, in and of itself, is not the cause of erectile dysfunction; rather, it is the result of difficulties and consequences associated with the disease, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, and high cholesterol.
Guys with a 42-inch waist, for example, are twice as likely as guys with a 32-inch waist to suffer erectile dysfunction. Another study discovered that increasing the waist size by four inches was enough to increase the risk of low testosterone levels by 75%. Testosterone is the key male sex hormone that regulates sexual function as well as libido and sexual desire. Erectile dysfunction is frequently caused by low testosterone levels.
Can Losing Weight Help?
Fortunately, decreasing weight can enhance both overall and erectile health.
Over 100 obese males suffering from erectile dysfunction took part in a two-year study on the subject. The men’s average age was 43.5, and their BMI was nearly 37, suggesting significant obesity. The guys were randomly divided into two groups, with one getting frequent counselling, nutritionist visits, and personal training sessions. The other group received basic written advice on how to lose weight.
Men in the first group shed an average of 33 pounds, reduced their BMI to an average of 31.2, reduced oxidative and inflammatory damage, and raised their self-esteem by only eating 300 less calories per day and increasing their weekly exercise. As a result, 31% of these males had full erectile function restored.
How to Lose Weight Safely
Losing weight can significantly lessen the symptoms of erectile dysfunction, but it may take some time before the results are noticeable. Meanwhile, drugs such as sildenafil or Tadalafil can be a simple method to restore your sexual life.
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