Could your sex life be improved with something as simple as adding more berries to your diet? Well, yes, it could—especially in terms of men’s sexual health. Your sexual health can often be a barometer for the overall health of your body, and adding more flavonoids, like those found in berries, is a surefire way to improve your health while also may improve your sex life.
According to a recent study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, foods high in flavonoids may reduce the risk of erectile dysfunction. The study was conducted among 25,000 men. They were asked to answer a questionnaire every 4 years throughout a 10-year period about their diet and sexual habits. With adjustments for certain lifestyle and disease risks, those who regularly had a higher intake of flavones, flavanones and anthocyanins experienced a significantly reduced risk of erectile dysfunction while under the age of 70. A higher intake of fruit was associated with a 14 percent reduced risk overall. The amount of fruit shown to be beneficial in the study was very little—only a few servings a week.
While flavonoids are beneficial as a whole, anthocyanins, flavones and flavonones were found to be most beneficial. Anthocyanins are found in red, blue and purple fruits, like raspberries, blueberries, blackcurrants and red grapes, while flavones and flavanones are found in white and yellow produce like citrus fruits. The protective effects of these flavonoids are independent of other lifestyle factors, like body weight, alcohol or caffeine consumption, and certain medications, which may increase the risk of erectile dysfunction.
Flavonoids provide a myriad of benefits beyond those that are sexual. High consumption has been shown to reduce the risk of diseases like diabetes and heart disease. For instance, high consumption of anthocyanins, found densely in blueberries, has been shown in studies to significantly reduce the risk of Type II diabetes. However, beyond the sexual inconvenience, erectile dysfunction can also serve as an early warning of impending cardiovascular issues, since they are directly related to the health of your blood flow. So, heading off erectile dysfunction could help you head off cardiovascular disease in the future.
Eating flavonoid-rich foods may even be as effective as exercise in preventing erectile dysfunction. So, get out for that jog and have a berry smoothie in the morning to keep healthy while getting frisky under the sheets.