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Can certain foods boost men's libido?

As much as men would like a key to the fountain of youth, there is no one thing that can help sustain a robust sex drive throughout a lifetime. After all, once a man hits his 50s, he is no longer physically designed to reproduce, and therefore he experiences a natural decrease in testosterone

Raj Laungani, M.D., a urologist at Piedmont Physicians Urology Specialists, cautions that there is no hard clinical data that links food with libido, but he says diet affects overall energy level and mood, which can impact sex drive. Some studies have indicated that testosterone levels are fueled by zinc and vitamin B, which can be found in certain foods.

According to various studies, these foods may impact libido. Even if you don’t notice a big boost in desire, these items have plenty of other health benefits as well.

  • Black raspberries. This phytochemical-rich food may enhance both libido and sexual endurance.
  • Pine nuts. Pine nuts are loaded with arginine. Arginine is converted by the body into nitric oxide, which helps dilate the blood vessels.
  • Avocados. Packed with heart-healthy fats, vitamin B6 and folic acid, avocados help fuel the body and increase energy. Vitamin B6 is known to help hormone production in men, which is key for a strong sex drive.
  • Watermelon. Watermelon contains citrulline, which is converted into arginine in the body. These chemicals relax blood vessels — just like the basic effect of Viagra.
  • Extra virgin olive oil. Olive oil boosts circulation to all areas of the body. The oil is packed with health benefits and may help prevent heart disease and colon cancer.
  • Broccoli. High in Indole-3-carbinol, which helps reduce estrogen levels, broccoli may be a great libido booster in men.

Dr. Laungani stresses that there are numerous contributors that affect libido.

“Overall mental and physical condition greatly factor into overall health,” says Dr. Laungani. “There is a checklist of items that I address with patients who come in complaining of a low sex drive. Exercise, weight and diet are at the top of this list.” 

Factors that decrease sex drive

The following factors can decrease sex drive in men:

  • Excessive weight
  • Poor diet
  • Little to no exercise
  • Poor sleep habits
  • Dehydration
  • Overconsumption of caffeine and alcohol
  • Unhealthy relationships

“When you are in a healthy place in your life and in your relationships, the rest usually falls into place,” Dr. Laungani says.

If you have concerns about your libido, your doctor can help. 

Need to make an appointment with a Piedmont physician? Save time, book online.

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