07 Aug Five Libido-Busters for Men
Here’s the scenario: It’s your anniversary. Your partner has planned a fabulous night out. You rush home from an exhausting day at the office just in time to grab her. You’re starving because neither the fast food hamburger you grabbed while running around nor the cookies from the breakroom kept you going this afternoon. All you want is a good meal and an even better beer to unwind. When you finally get to the restaurant, your eyes have a hard time even noticing the beautiful woman next to you because your phone keeps vibrating and your mind keeps racing with things left undone. After the second drink you’re starting to let go and you enjoy a nice meal. Several drinks, an appetizer, entrée and dessert later, you loosen your belt and head home with nothing on your mind but sleep. Your willing spouse wonders why she’s not enough and why you just aren’t that interested in sex anymore. So what gives?
Whether on a low fat diet for weight loss or a high processed food diet for convenience, what you eat can have a massive effect on your sexual desire. Hormone levels, especially testosterone, can be altered by food choice. In one study, men whose typical diet, consisting of over 40% fat (mainly from animal sources), was replaced with a low fat diet of approximately 25% fat had a significant and noticeable reduction in testosterone levels. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/6538617) Before you get excited and think of running to the local fast-food restaurant for a greasy burger and fries, think again. Fast-food is loaded with dangerous trans-fats which correlate to lower testosterone levels. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1998648) Although the burger and fries from the corner quick stop isn’t ideal, one cooked at home can be a fantastic choice. Low carbohydrate diets, including meats, fish and non-starchy vegetables, can lower total body inflammation leading to more balanced hormone levels and a higher libido.
After a fun night out with one too many drinks, you may have experienced the inability to have good sex—or sex at all. Poor erections can be the result of excessive drinking, but one bad night isn’t the only downside of drinking too much. Regular, prolonged drinking may seem like a good way to lower inhibitions, and even seem to be an aphrodisiac for some, but it is in fact an obstacle for ongoing good sex. Over time persistent drinking causes a decline in sexual response and sensitivity, which can be noticeable as reduced libido.
While most of us are burdened with stress beyond our liking, we must realize the way we handle our stressors will greatly affect our ability to connect with our partner—in and out of the bedroom because of low libido. Working hard to care for your family often takes a toll on what goes on behind closed doors. Whether it’s your mind being distracted, a physical exhaustion from working too hard or even an emotional toll from carrying the burden to support your family, loads of stress does not translate into to lots of sex. So what’s a busy guy to do? Taking intentional time for your relationship, especially when desire is lacking, can turn the dial up on intimacy. This means not only clearing your mind but clearing your schedule so you can play close attention to your physical needs and reconnect with your partner. If your libido is low, intimacy builds in small ways. Take time to sit on the couch together, unwind, take a bath or give each other massages. The physical act of touch, when stress is lowered, will often fan the smoldering flame of desire.
4-Insulin resistance and Diabetes
The prevalence of type 2 diabetes is growing at astronomical rates, not just in the US, but all over the world. This global epidemic can take a real toll on your sex life. (https://www.cdc.gov/diabetes/statistics/slides/long_term_trends.pdf)
But it’s not just a diagnosis of type 2 diabetes that can decrease your desire, the precursor to diabetes, insulin resistance, will turn a good sex life sour before you realize what’s happened. Both insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes are due to elevated blood sugars in the body from on over-consumption of dietary carbohydrates. We all have a different tolerance for carbohydrates and its effects on the body vary from person to person. Activity level, genetics, sleep and dietary intake each impacts our ability to process carbohydrates effectively. How your body processes the sugars you consume will determine your path to these diseases. These diagnoses squash your sex drive in various ways including need for medications, depression leading to low desire, decreased testosterone levels and increased relationship stress. Have your doctor check your fasting insulin level to find out if your carbohydrate intake is putting a damper on your desire.
5-Testosterone decline with aging
Often the decline in testosterone as men get older is multifactorial. (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4816459/) Not only do the cells of the testicles that make testosterone become less responsive to the brain’s stimulation to produce testosterone, but the brain slows down its signal to make the sex hormone. Combine these effects at t biological level with all the above which can lower testosterone level and you can see that for many men it’s an uphill battle. Checking your testosterone, LH and FSH levels in order to identify if your testosterone is low and the likely source of your decreased levels is the first step to conquering the aging decline. Hormone replacement with bioidentical testosterone is an effective way to return your testosterone levels to their “younger” state giving your libido the lift it may need.
At AgeWell we specialize in bioidentical hormone replacement therapy and sexual health. We can help you identify the primary reason your lackluster libido is hampering your relationship. Along with FSH and LH we measure three kinds of testosterone to further identify the specifics of low testosterone, also known as low T. Testosterone injections, topical creams/gels or pellets can all be used to boost your testosterone level. Call AgeWell at 806-683-6813 to schedule a consultation and learn what might be causing your libido to wane.