Impotence Linked to Undiagnosed Diabetes and Heart Disease

If you’re male and suffering from erectile dysfunction (ED), you might want to look beyond the little blue pill to find the solution. Erectile dysfunction is described as “the inability to achieve or sustain an erection suitable for sexual intercourse.” It has traditionally been linked with medication use, chronic illness, poor blood flow to the penis, excessive alcohol, or fatigue, but according to new research in the medical journal Annals of Family Medicine, many men with erectile dysfunction are actually suffering from undiagnosed diabetes.

The researchers from the University of British Columbia Centre for Health Services and Policy Research analyzed data from men aged 20 and up who participated in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey between 2001 and 2004. Researchers assessed the possibility that there may be an increased number of men with erectile dysfunction suffering from undiagnosed diabetes, high blood pressure (hypertension), or high cholesterol levels (hypercholesterolemia), or all three conditions.

While the researchers found no correlation between erectile dysfunction and hypertension or hypercholesterolemia, they found a significant link between the condition and undiagnosed diabetes. Men with erectile dysfunction were twice as likely as men without the condition to have undiagnosed diabetes. Additionally, for men between the ages of 40 and 59, the probability of having undiagnosed diabetes increased from 1 in 50 for those who do not suffer from erectile dysfunction to 1 in 10 for those who suffer from erectile dysfunction.

The researchers concluded that erectile dysfunction should be seen as a marker for undiagnosed diabetes and that the presence of ED should trigger diabetes screening, especially among middle-aged men.

Other research known as the “Florey Adelaide Male Ageing Study “ conducted by researchers at the University of Adelaide, Australia, and published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine, found that erectile dysfunction can be reversed without pharmaceutical drugs. In this study, researchers found that the incidence of ED was 31 percent of the 810 men between the ages of 35 and 80 assessed. The scientists found that the major risk factors for the condition include: being overweight or obese, a high level of alcohol intake, sleep disturbances or sleep apnea, and age. This study indicates that ED can also be a marker for underlying heart disease.

While other factors such as nerve damage and imbalanced hormones are also linked to ED, the new research points to the importance of addressing the possibility of undiagnosed heart disease or diabetes.

The Australian researchers recommend eating healthier, exercising more, drinking less alcohol and getting better sleep to reverse erectile dysfunction.

Earlier research by Dr. Bhimu Patil at Texas A & M University and published in ScienceDirect found that watermelon may have similar effects as Viagra, including stimulating penile blood vessels and increasing libido. Watermelon’s anti-impotence effects could be linked to nutrients like beta carotene, lycopene and citrulline. The latter is still being investigated to determine its health effects, but it has been shown by Patil to relax blood vessels in the same way that Viagra does. Citrulline is also converted to arginine, an amino acid known for its heart health benefits, in the body.  Unlike drug options for ED, watermelon does not have any harmful side-effects.

Conversely, Drugs.com lists over 100 side-effects of Viagra, some of which include: trembling and shaking, worsening of asthma symptoms, inability to experience sexual orgasm, muscle aches and pains, diarrhea, convulsions, blindness, difficulty breathing, headaches, sneezing, discomfort following meals, and difficulty sleeping. Incidentally, the Australian study linked difficulty sleeping as a causal factor for erectile dysfunction.

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51 comments

Jeanne R
Jeanne Rabout a year ago

Thank you for sharing.

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Jeanne R
Jeanne Rabout a year ago

Thank you for sharing.

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Jeanne R
Jeanne Rabout a year ago

Thank you for sharing.

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Jeanne R
Jeanne Rabout a year ago

Thank you for sharing.

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Jeanne R
Jeanne Rabout a year ago

Thank you for sharing.

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Siyus Copetallus
Siyus Copetallus2 years ago

Thank you for sharing!

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Jim Ven
Jim V2 years ago

thanks for the article.

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Nikki Davey
Nikki Davey2 years ago

Noted

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sandra vito
Sandra Vito2 years ago

gracias

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Teresa W.
Teresa W2 years ago

thanks

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