What is the number one killer in North America? You guessed right – heart disease is. Sadly, it has or will affect each and every one of us in some way. Many of the risk factors are preventable such as smoking, obesity, high cholesterol, lack of exercise, and a diet high in unhealthy fats. You’re probably already aware that healthy lifestyle habits can substantially reduce your risk of developing cardiovascular disease. However, perhaps this hasn’t been enough of an incentive for you to choose salad over chicken wings or oats over bacon. Gentlemen, let me give you another reason to put down your Quarter Pounder with Cheese. High cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, and obesity reduce blood flow to the penis and cause erectile dysfunction. That’s right. Your heart health directly affects your ability to perform in the bedroom. Now do you have a good reason to embrace heart healthy practices?
If you’re having trouble getting it up or keeping it up, this may be an early sign of a more serious health problem, such as atherosclerosis – the formation of plaque on the walls of the blood vessels. Overtime, the buildup of plaque reduces coronary blood flow and increases the risk of heart attack and stroke. Interestingly, researchers found that erectile dysfunction in younger men may be an early warning sign of cardiovascular disease. Fatty foods, smoking, and poor lifestyle behaviors not only increase your risk of developing cardiovascular conditions, it is a known fact that they may also hinder your ability to maintain an erection.
February is Heart Health Month – so let’s review what to eat and which supplements to take to ensure healthy blood flow all around.
Heart Healthy Diet:
- Increase fiber-rich foods and aim to consume 35 grams of dietary fiber per day.
- Oats, quinoa, millet, peas, squash, figs, and apples are some examples of soluble fiber which help lower blood cholesterol levels.
Consume more of: Millet, Quinoa, Barley, Oats, Prunes, Unpeeled Apples, Broccoli, Dark Leafy Green Vegetables, Peas, Lentils, Raw and Unsalted Walnuts/Pumpkin Seeds/Sunflower Seeds, Fresh Berries, Fresh Figs, Pomegranate Juice, and Pears.
Consume less of: High Saturated Fats found in Meats and Cheeses, Trans Fats, Canned/Instant Soups, Cold Cuts/Hot Dogs/Hamburgers, Ham, Egg Yolks, Salted Crackers, Dill Pickles, Sauerkraut, Ketchup, Dairy, Butter, Lard, Sugary Treats, Refined Cereals, White Bread, Fried Foods, Coffee, and Soft Drinks.
*The lists above are just partial lists.
Key Supplement to Take:
Kyolic Aged Garlic Extract is naturally aged, organic, odorless garlic. I recommend it to my patients because it is the most researched cardiovascular supplement in the world. It is also Health Canada approved to reduce cholesterol and the risk of cardiovascular disease. I’m a fan of evidence based medicine and Kyolic has over 650 research papers supporting its efficacy. Unlike other garlic supplements, Kyolic is aged for 20 months, and as a result of this process, it contains the beneficial compound S-Allyl Cysteine (SAC). SAC is responsible for the cholesterol lowering effects and all the other heart health benefits, including reducing arterial plaque buildup.
If you’re concerned about your performance in the bedroom, start hitting the gym regularly, reduce your stress levels by practicing yoga or breathing exercises, follow the dietary recommendations outlined above, and start taking Kyolic Aged Garlic Extract. “Poor cardiovascular health is arguably the number one reason men get erectile dysfunction” says Mark Moyad, M.D., of the University of Michigan Medical Center. If you feel like you’re alone, you’re not. Speak to a health care professional and take control of your heart health naturally.