If you have erectile dysfunction, or ED, there are many ways your doctor can help you treat it. But you may want to consider complementary or alternative medicine therapies, rather than traditional medicine. Alternative or complementary treatments might include such things as nutritional supplements, herbal remedies, acupuncture, and talk therapy.
So if you’re considering an alternative form of treatment for ED, talk to your doctor before getting started.
There are several supplements that have been shown to help increase blood flow and therefore may help with ED in some cases. Those include:
L-arginine and pycnogenol. A study showed that when these two supplements were used together, men had a significant improvement in sexual function without any side effects.
Flavonoids. According to a 10-year study of more than 25,000 men, those who ate a diet high in flavonoid-rich foods were less likely to have ED. Whether that means flavonoid supplements can help with ED still needs to be studied.
Zinc. There seems to be a link between severe zinc deficiency and men who have low testosterone. Researchers know that a zinc supplement increases testosterone serum levels in men, so it could help with ED, as well.
This ancient Chinese medicine uses needles to stimulate certain points on the body. The stimulation can help you overcome illnesses and conditions by correcting imbalances.
If your ED is caused by psychological or emotional issues, consider seeing a counselor or therapist. She can teach you ways to reduce the anxiety related to sex.
You can even invite your partner to talk about new ways to explore intimacy and different techniques to treat the physical causes of your ED.
Keep in mind that most nutritional supplements aren’t regulated by the FDA as drugs or foods. Instead they’re regulated as dietary supplements.
That means they have to meet certain quality standards, but it doesn’t guarantee that they’re safe for everyone. That’s why you should always talk with your doctor before taking any supplements. And stay safe by following these tips:
- Avoid supplements from outside the U.S.
- Check with the FDA for supplements under review
- Don’t exceed recommended dosage
- Take only one supplement at a time