What You Can Do About "ED"
Blood tests aren't the only reliable way to gauge ED: Certain unhealthy lifestyle factors, including smoking and being overweight, increase the likelihood of this silent risk factor. Also, if your cholesterol, triglycerides, or homocysteine levels are elevated, you likely have endothelial dysfunction. Being stressed and having diabetes also boost the likelihood of ED.
What are the right foods to eat to beat ED? One of the first studies on diet and ED looked at the effects of a fast-food breakfast rich in trans fat, saturated fat, and refined starches. Gary D. Plotnick, M.D., of University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore used ultrasound to measure changes in blood-vessel tone and blood flow in the brachial artery, which is the nurses listen to in your arm when they take your blood pressure.
Blood vessel tone in Plotnick's subjects decreased for two to four hours after eating the fast-food meal. Plotnick also discovered that supplements of vitamins C and E protected blood vessels. Of course, that doesn't mean you should take vitamins as an "antidote" for eating fast foods. But it does suggest that eating nutritious foods, packed with vitamins such as C and E, will likely help protect the health of your blood vessels.
So start by following the advice you've heard before — nix the foods with unhealthy fats, sugars, and refined (white) carbohydrates. You know what they are: convenient, processed snacks, fast foods, and desserts. And what should you eat? Read on.
Corn Bread Muffins Grape Barbecue Sausage Bites Crab and Olive Spread Orange-Ginger Green Beans Grilled Pepper Pork Chops Butternut Squash Soufflé Indian Monkfish Curry Sauce Pink Sangria Honey-Mustard Chicken
In junior high school, I'd gotten my hands on one of my father's old English books and read a story by Nathaniel Hawthorne, "The Great Stone Face". The story is based on the natural mountain/rock formation in New Hampshire of the same name (you can see an image of it on New Hampshire state quarters). In the story, there was a legend that the person whose face looked like The Great Stone Face would be "the...