Call this the Marvin Gaye of amino acids: L-arginine converts to nitric oxide (NO), a naturally occuring gas that causes blood vessels to relax and facilitate blood flow, helping you get and stay hard. You can find plenty of the nutrient in oysters, but in supplement form, the Mayo Clinic says that 400-6,000 milligrams is the maximum dose. And these are the best foods for arginine!
A 2000 study conducted at the Institute of Sexology in Paris found that muira puama, a Brazilian shrub traditionally used in South African folk medicine as an aphrodisiac, increased libido and erection strength in a majority of men who complained of impotence and a lack of sexual desire. Other studies show this happy-making herb also counteracts chronic stress, depression and nervous exhaustion.
Although not proven, it is likely that erectile dysfunction can be prevented by good general health, paying particular attention to body weight, exercise, and cigarette smoking. For example, heart disease and diabetes are problems that can cause erectile dysfunction, and both are preventable through lifestyle changes such as sensible eating and regular exercise. Furthermore, early diagnosis and treatment of associated conditions like diabetes, hypertension and high cholesterol may prevent or delay erectile dysfunction, or stop the erectile dysfunction from getting more serious.
A double-blind, partial crossover study on the therapeutic effect of yohimbine hydrochloride on erectile dysfunction was done in 82 sexually impotent patients. All patients underwent a multifactorial evaluation, including determination of penile brachial blood pressure index, cavernosography, sacral evoked response, testosterone and prolactin determination, Derogatis sexual dysfunction inventory and daytime arousal test. After 1 month of treatment with a maximum of 42.0 mg. oral yohimbine hydrochloride daily 14 per cent of the patients experienced restoration of full and sustained erections, 20 per cent reported a partial response to the therapy and 65 per cent reported no improvement. Three patients reported a positive placebo effect. Maximum effect takes 2 to 3 weeks to manifest itself. Yohimbine was active in some patients with arterial insufficiency and a unilateral sacral reflex arc lesion, and in 1 with low serum testosterone levels. The 34 per cent response is encouraging, particularly in a Veterans Administration population presenting with a high incidence of diabetes and vascular pathological conditions not found in regular office patients. Only few and benign side effects were recorded, which makes this medication worth an attempt, often as a first line of treatment even at a dose of 8 tablets.

Yohimbine hydrochloride is the principal alkaloid of the bark of the African yohimbe tree. It is primarily selective for the presynaptic alpha-2 receptor that enhances the central release of norepinephrine1,2 or even epinephrine,3 although the latter is controversial.4 This central action increases sexual arousal2,5 and appears similar to the central alpha-2 adrenergic mechanism that initiates hot flashes.6 Peripherally, yohimbine may partially antagonize norepinephrine-induced contraction of corporeal cavernosal smooth muscle.7,8 The action is that of an antagonist to postjunctional alpha-2 adrenergic receptors, but a direct effect on vascular smooth muscle is also possible.9
However, a recent study that involves yohimbe supplementation to athletes ended with an unsatisfactory result. According to this study, yohimbe did not have any significant effects on body mass, muscle mass and exercise performance even after it was taken for 21 days. Even though it helped burn body fat, it may not be a useful supplement for boosting endurance.9
Although not direct proof of cause and effect, the positive results that we report in half of the men in the current study may reinforce our clinical observation with objective RigiScan™ data that use of yohimbine might be associated with better effects in nonsmokers. We30 reported that cessation of smoking may rapidly improve nocturnal erectile activity and found that nicotine was not the noxious agent in our study. We postulated that carbon monoxide might create a hypoxic environment in the penis. This effect probably was mediated through restoration of nitric oxide activity.31
Does drinking water improve erectile dysfunction? Erectile dysfunction or ED is a common concern for men. Everyday factors, such as hydration levels, may affect a person's ability to get or maintain an erection. Drinking water may, therefore, help some men with ED. In this article, learn about the link between hydration and ED, and other factors that can cause ED. Read now
Size matters, so get slim and stay slim. A trim waistline is one good defense — a man with a 42-inch waist is 50% more likely to have ED than one with a 32-inch waist. Losing weight can help fight erectile dysfunction, so getting to a healthy weight and staying there is another good strategy for avoiding or fixing ED. Obesity raises risks for vascular disease and diabetes, two major causes of ED. And excess fat interferes with several hormones that may be part of the problem as well.
As an alpha-2 antagonist, yohimbine promotes sympathetic activity. According to a number of studies, yohimbe can increase blood pressure. This is why it’s useful for things like erectile dysfunction or diabetic nerve problems. Yohimbine is sometimes used to treat low blood pressure and symptoms like dizziness when standing up. It works by dilating blood vessels and acting on the sympathetic nervous system. However, it’s important to point out that increased blood pressure can also be a problem for some people, especially those with existing cardiovascular problems, people taking blood pressure medications, or those who already have high blood pressure.
Niacin -- with or without the addition of drugs to treat impotence -- poses serious health risks, including stomach ulcers and liver damage. If you have Type 2 diabetes, taking niacin could cause drastic elevations in your blood sugar levels. Less serious side effects include stomach upset and skin flushes -- your face and chest turn red and your skin itches, tingles or burns. You can purchase niacin without a prescription, but some over-the-counter formulas -- no-flush varieties that contain niacinamide -- will unlikely help lower your cholesterol.

The problem with this though is that there are a lot of websites that are claiming to have a specific exercise technique or perhaps very effective male enhancement products that can guarantee erectile dysfunction. Be careful not to fall for a male enhancement scam. Even though erectile dysfunction may be stressful or difficult to discuss about, there are proven and safe methods that can help you in dealing with it.

In the analysis of the study, the niacin group showed a significant increase in both IIEF-Q3 scores and IIEF-Q4 scores compared to the initial baseline values. While the placebo group also showed a significant increase in IIEF-Q3 scores (high hopes, no doubt), it did not for IIEF-Q4 scores. In other words, the “placebo effect” did not extend to maintaining erections. Also, when patients were stratified according to the baseline severity of ED, the patients with moderate and severe ED who received niacin showed a significant improvement in IIEF-Q3 scores (0.56 and 1.03, respectively) and IIEF-Q4 scores (0.56 and 0.84, respectively) compared with baseline values. These results were not significantly increased for the placebo group.
In fact, dyslipidemia is commonly found in ED patients, and studies show that statins can help to improve the response of PDE5 inhibitors in those suffering from ED precisely because they improve atherosclerosis. Consequently, statins can be used as a treatment in patients with an unsatisfactory response to PDE5 inhibitors, yet there are problems with statins too, among them raised liver enzymes and muscle problems, some of which can be quite serious and even deadly (rhabdomylosis).
Yohimbe can interact with several drugs and medications, so it’s not safe for everybody to use. Don’t take yohimbe bark if you’re currently taking any ACE inhibitor drug, beta blocker, SSRI drug, MAOI, stimulants or caffeine-containing drugs, or tricyclic antidepressant drugs. Those who have any of the conditions listed below should not take herbal treatments like yohimbe without speaking with a doctor first. This is because it may affect things like blood pressure, heart health, kidney function and neurotransmitter functions:
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Erectile problems can sometimes be linked to cardiovascular issues. If your heart isn't in full health, your sex life maybe suffering as result. Men who suffer with moderate to severe erection problems have significantly lower levels of folic acid than guys without the issue. The B vitamin has been shown to work with nitric oxide which would explain why an absence of it would lead to problems in the manhood. This seems to help with erectile dysfunction more than some medications. Treatment with folic acid resulted in men having an increase in their erectile strength.
In the statistical analysis, the difference between the pre-test and post-test values (changed score) for IIEF score was computed. Student t-test was used to compare the mean changed score values of IIEF. All statistical analysis was performed on an IBM compatible micro computer using SPSS for window version 15.0, (Chicago IL, USA). The probability level for all the above tests was set at 0.05 to indicate significance.
Eggs a supplement? Yup. Testosterone is derived from cholesterol, and eggs are the healthiest way to ensure you’re getting enough of the good kind (LDL cholesterol). Plus, eggs are rich in choline, a powerful natural chemical that not only burns fat but can help set your pants afire. Choline triggers the production of nitric oxide (NO), which relaxes arteries in the penis and enables blood flow to do its thing. Choline is a precursor to acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter which controls sexual behavior through its activity in the brain; having a higher level of AcH has been associated with more frequent sex and more intense, longer orgasms. And that’s not all: Check out these things that happen to your body when you eat eggs!
Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid) is irreplaceable if you wish to increase life expectancy. Vitamin B5 has a positive impact on the nervous system and intestinal motility. Calcium pantothenate is a form of vitamin B5 that has a powerful anabolic effect, enhances the synthesis of steroid hormones, and takes part in the synthesis of coenzyme A. In addition, calcium pantothenate helps release energy from foods. So, to a large extent, it improves your body’s endurance and stamina, as well as increases human tolerance to different loads.

Ancient Incans consumed this energizing Peruvian plant before battle or a bout of sex, Chris Kilham, an ethnobotanist at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, told Outside Online. Maca increases sexual appetite, stamina, endurance, and fertility. One 2008 study conducted at the Depression Clinical and Research Program at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston found that maca helped people with antidepressant-induced sexual dysfunction to regain their libidos.

The endothelium is vital to the maintenance of vascular health. It is a critical determinant of vascular tone and patency, reactivity, inflammation, vascular remodeling, and blood fluidity. (9, 10). Nitric oxide (NO) is the most potent vasodilator and is secreted by the endothelium. It is synthesized from Larginine by the endothelial enzyme NO synthase (eNOS). NO released in response to sexual stimulation relaxes penile vascular smooth muscle by increasing intracellular cyclic 3′, 5′-guanosine monophosphate (cGMP) concentration. Vasodilatation of erectile tissues allows the sinusoidal spaces to fill with blood resulting in the attainment and maintenance of an erection (5).


Researchers found that this compound, delivering 6mg of yohimbine HCL and 3.25g of L-arginine, significantly improved erectile function in those with mild-to-moderate ED. [15] L-arginine is an amino acid that acts as a precursor to and plays a critical role in nitric oxide production. Yohimbine paired with a compound encouraging nitric oxide production may be the perfect combination for significantly decreasing or eliminating symptoms of erectile dysfunction.
The main surgical treatment of ED involves insertion of a penile implant (also called penile prostheses). Because penile vascular surgery is not recommended for aging males who have failed oral PDE5 inhibitors, ICI or IU therapies, implants are the next step for these patients. Although placement of a penile implant is a surgery which carries risks, they have the highest rates of success and satisfaction among ED treatment options.
Although not proven, it is likely that erectile dysfunction can be prevented by good general health, paying particular attention to body weight, exercise, and cigarette smoking. For example, heart disease and diabetes are problems that can cause erectile dysfunction, and both are preventable through lifestyle changes such as sensible eating and regular exercise. Furthermore, early diagnosis and treatment of associated conditions like diabetes, hypertension and high cholesterol may prevent or delay erectile dysfunction, or stop the erectile dysfunction from getting more serious.
Shape up. ED is often linked with restricted blood flow to the penis. Keep your heart and arteries in good condition by maintaining a healthy weight, and following a diet high in fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Avoid saturated fats and trans-fats. Regular aerobic exercise can improve blood flow to the genitals and reduce the stress that can contribute to ED.
In the present study zinc caused an elevation of T. This showed an increase from 2.39 to 8.21 ng/dl after two weeks of zinc treatment. This elevated T level may have contributed to the increase in number of penile thrusting (from 26.5 to 52.8) observed. Supplementation with 459 μmol/day of zinc for three months, in marginally zinc deficient healthy elderly men, has been shown to increase the levels of serum T from 8.3 to 16 ng/dl.[25] Laboratory experiments indicate that the nitric oxide erectile pathway is T dependent.[26] Many studies using animal models have confirmed that T is important in modulating the central and peripheral regulation of erectile dysfunction. T deprivation has a negative impact on the structure of penile tissues and erectile nerves.[27] Thus, elevated T levels subsequent to zinc supplementation may increase the sexual competence via rigid and sustained erection. This may promote greater tactile stimulation of the penis due to increased contact with vagina.[25]

It is common for a healthy older man to still want sex and be able to have sex within appropriate limitations. Understanding what is normal in older age is important to avoid frustration and concern. Older men and their partners often value being able to continue sexual activity and there is no age where the man is ‘too old’ to think about getting help with his erection or other sexual problems.
Despite the name, horny goat weed actually helps improve your erection, not libido.  Botanically known as epimedium, this herb has been used by the Chinese for centuries to treat, among other things, low libido and erectile dysfunction. “A growing body of research shows that isolated icariin—the extract of epimedium—inhibits the enzyme phosphodiesterase-5 (PDE-5) and significantly increases nitric oxide synthase, helping to improve erectile function,” says Fisch. In fact, this is the same mechanism that Viagra works through (but the herb comes with a way better name).
In a recent study, moderate-intensity exercise such as walking briskly and light cycling was shown to boost mood for up to 12 hours. Exercising every day might be best to lift your mood, but strive for at least 5 days a week. Another study showed exercise can improve your body image, regardless of body weight or shape. And feeling good about your body is a great start toward making the bedroom a happier place.
A physical exam checks your total health. Examination focusing on your genitals (penis and testicles) is often done to check for ED. Based on your age and risk factors, the exam may also focus on your heart and blood system: heart, peripheral pulses and blood pressure. Based on your age and family history your doctor may do a rectal exam to check the prostate. These tests are not painful. Most patients do not need a lot of testing before starting treatment.
Lastly, it should be remembered that many individuals without dyslipidemia take niacin as a preventative measure. If you plan to take more than about 800 mg of niacin a day, it is a good idea to have your liver tested periodically just to make sure that your liver has no problem with high-dose niacin. These liver tests are the same used to check for liver toxicity in people taking statins, from which there is a higher likelihood of liver toxicity compared to taking niacin. The principal problem from taking statins is muscle damage which is serious enough to be life-threatening. This problem does not occur with those who take niacin. Not to be forgotten, niacin has been found to prolong orgasm.
Shindel, A. W., Xin, Z.-C., Lin, G., Fandel, T. M., Huang, Y.-C., Banie, L., … Lue, T. F. (2010, February 5). Erectogenic and neurotrophic effects of icariin, a purified extract of horny goat weed (Epimedium spp.) in vitro and in vivo. The Journal of Sexual Medicine, 7(4), 1518-1528. Retrieved from http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1743-6109.2009.01699.x/full
We have presented objective evidence that yohimbine has a positive effect in men with organic erectile dysfunction. This is contrary to the blanket statement of the American Urological Association in their clinical guidelines for erectile dysfunction, which states: ‘Based on the data to date, yohimbine does not appear to be effective for erectile dysfunction and, thus, it should not be recommended as treatment for the standard patient.’17 Our data strongly suggest that yohimbine treatment should be revisited. Our study was observational with dose-escalation just to see if there was any rationale to expect any effect in men with organic erectile dysfunction, especially in men who do not have the risk factor of tobacco abuse. The next step would be a double-blind, placebo-controlled study using yohimbine in smokers vs non-smokers to verify the current observation. We believe that our data justify such a trial. Yohimbine will never be a first-line drug for erectile dysfunction, but may be useful in subsets of men with mild disease or few risk factors. Yohimbine might also be useful in combination therapy with other treatment modalities such as sildenafil and intraurethral alprostadil, when they do not produce adequate effects alone, as has already been shown with naloxone39 or trazedone.40
For many men, stopping smoking is an erectile dysfunction remedy, particularly when ED is the result of vascular disease, which occurs when blood supply to the penis becomes restricted because of blockage or narrowing of the arteries. Smoking and even smokeless tobacco can also cause the narrowing of important blood vessels and have the same negative impact. 

Males consuming yohimbine HCL for its pro-erectile benefits should take 5.4mg to 6mg three times per day but don't expect for the results to be noticeable until after about two to weeks of consistent dosing. [4] Not all males will experience this benefit so if you do not notice a change after four weeks of consistent dosing then consider stopping supplementation altogether.


Guay and Spark observed independently (unpublished data) that yohimbine was associated with a very poor response in cigarette smokers. This is believed to be relevant, because studies several decades ago may have included a large percentage of smokers, which only recently has been recognized as a risk factor for erectile dysfunction. We tested this hypothesis by studying nonsmoking men with documented organic impotence and by judging whether any possible effect might be related to adrenal or testicular hormones, which, to our knowledge, has not been studied.
Dr. Niket Sonpal is the Associate Program Director of the Internal Medicine Residency at Brookdale Hospital Medical Center in Brooklyn and an Associate Professor at Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine. He's a practicing Gastroenterologist and Hepatologist with a focus on Men's and Women's Health, and a regular contributor to Women's health, Shape and Prevention Magazine.
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