My husband is suffering from erectile dysfunction and it is starting to take its toll on a previously happy marriage. Are there any herbal supplements he can take to help restore a normal sex life?
Inadequate blood flow to the penis is a significant cause of erectile dysfunction and the herb most often prescribed for circulatory problems is Ginkgo biloba. In a study reported in the medical journal Urology, 50 impotent men were given 240mg of Ginkgo biloba daily for nine months. Some of the men were also given Zenerx, an herbal remedy that can help improve erections. The researchers reported that the Ginkgo biloba supplement greatly improved sexual performance in both groups, regardless of the papaverine.
It is often better to take herbs in liquid tincture form – the fastest route into the bloodstream. Your husband should be aiming to take 30 drops of Ginkgo biloba, three times a day. He will also benefit from taking 20 drops, three times daily, of saw palmetto tincture, which is now used in most prostate health formulations. Max Tomlinson, who practises at the Grove Complementary Clinic in London, also suggests your husband take liquid linseed oil to increase his intake of the omega-3 fatty acid. The body cannot make this substance and it is one of the more difficult nutrients to source from the diet. Linseed oil is available in capsule form and your husband needs to take 1,000mg, three times a day.
Bloating and stomach problems may be a sign of overfermentation in the body that can also interfere with sexual performance.
If your husband complains of a heavy feeling after eating, this could also be part of the problem, so he should try to avoid yeast-rich beer and bread for a while.
Meanwhile, a new impotence drug that could leave Viagra as a limp runner-up is being perfected by researchers at the Medical College of Georgia, in Augusta. Viagra only actually works on 60% of patients, and it takes several hours to produce an erection. Studies on rats of the new, unnamed product have shown that it produces instant results by acting on an enzyme to relax the muscles that normally keep the blood vessels in the penis constricted. The only drawback is that you have to inject it directly into the organ, which could prove to be a bit of a passion-killer.
In other “penis” news, researchers in America have discovered that the average penis is shorter than previously thought. Since the pioneering Kinsey report into male sexuality was published in the 1940s, the average length of the erect male organ has been thought to be between 6.2in and 6.4in. But a new study by a team working for the Lifestyles condom company has lopped half an inch off that figure. It now puts the length at 5.87in.
The latest research was carried out in Cancun, Mexico. Doctors had hoped to measure 1,000 men in a tent outside a nightclub. As it turned out, there were only 300 volunteers. But the results confirmed the findings of a similar study in Brazil, which produced only 150 volunteers.