Best Foods to Eat to Improve Sexual Performance
As the longstanding cliché goes, “You are what you eat;” and as a man, this extends to even your sexual performance. I tell my patients that if they’re looking to maintain or boost their sexual health, one of the best things they can do is to simply eat right – with moderation as a good guideline — and everything improves. Yet, when it comes to hitting peak sexual performance, there are a few clear links of key food ingredients that impact your sex organs specifically.
Feeding the Link between Food and Sexual Performance
Nitric oxide is a gas that is released in minute amounts in the tissues of the penis, clitoris, and labia during sexual arousal. When released, it’s what opens up blood vessels, allowing for the swelling and increased sensitivity that come with sexual excitement.
Nitric oxide is made from an amino acid called arginine, which is found in particular abundance in the following foods:
- Walnuts and almonds
- Cold-water fish such as salmon and tuna
- Soy products
Another class of nutrients important for sexual health are the bioflavonoids, which are mainly derived from fruits and vegetables. Bioflavonoids work much like antioxidants, scavenging by-products of the body’s metabolism of harmful molecules that resulted from the exposure to environmental pollutants.
The list below shows some of the best food sources from which you can acquire multiple types of bioflavonoids:
- Berries, cherries, grapes, oranges, grapefruits and 100% fruit juices
- True teas (not herbal teas)
- Parsley and other herbs
- Onions, endive, radishes, tomatoes, leeks, broccoli
- Red wine
When we talk about antioxidants my patients will often inquire about the health benefits of drinking pomegranate juice given all the buzz around its natural antioxidants content. Natural antioxidants are heart healthy and as I’ve repeatedly said, what’s good for the heart is good for the penis; so yes, a glass a day of pomegranate juice is a good thing for more than one reason.
In general, anything that adds to a guy’s overall health is going to help his sex drive and stamina. Many studies show that deficiencies of vitamin E, vitamin B12, zinc, selenium, and a host of other vitamins hurt a man or a woman’s fertility. However, that doesn’t mean you should go out and start popping extra zinc tablets — mega-doses of any vitamin can cause problems.
Instead, everyone needs adequate levels of all the key vitamins, particularly the antioxidant vitamins A, C, and E. If you can and your lifestyle supports it, it’s best to get your vitamins from real foods. If this is not possible, it makes sense to take a general-purpose vitamin supplement every day just to cover your bases.
Everyone has heard of them, but guys always ask me if such things actually exist. While I wish I could tell you that eating a plate of oysters can boost your sex drive, the truth is somewhere in the middle. Although there is no scientific link between foods deemed as aphrodisiacs and the male libido, the fact that these foods are considered catalysts for creating a more pleasurable experience creates a placebo effect. By simply thinking that these foods can impact your arousal, you can consequently find sex more pleasurable.
Foods that Negatively Impact Your Sexual Health
Whole foods are always going to be better for you than refined or processed foods, as these are the real dietary evils. The sugar and refined carbohydrates found in over processed foods throw the body’s insulin out of whack, which leads to rapid conversion of the carbs to fat, increased hunger and a lack of necessary vitamins and minerals. The end result not only impacts your overall health but incorporating these foods into your everyday diet can diminish your sexual performance as well.
A lot of research shows that guys who are overweight, especially in the belly, have lower testosterone levels and are more likely to have problems with their erections. That’s because excess fat gets converted to estrogen-like compounds which curtail the production of testosterone.
Here’s a list of foods to avoid, but again, no need to go cold turkey. You’ll make a great start by cutting back on processed foods loaded with high-fructose corn syrup and avoiding sugary drinks.
- Potato Chips
- Fried foods
- Fast Food
Your Diet and Sexual Health
The basic message is clear: if you enjoy sex and would like to enjoy it more, or ensure that you’ll be enjoying for years to come, watch your weight, eat real, unprocessed foods, and focus on the types of foods I’ve mentioned here.