As we mentioned in previous articles, with either mental or physical stimulation, your brain signals the nerve ending in the penis to release nitric oxide. Nitric oxide relaxes or dilates blood vessels, enabling them to open up and bring more blood to the penis and helping to create an erection. In this article, we will discuss what causes erectile dysfunction in men.

1. Aging
Starting at the age of 40 the levels of prolactin increases, stimulating the conversion of dihydro-testosterone, causing enlarged prostate and erection difficulty in some men.

2. Uncontrolled diet
Uncontrolled diet that is high in saturated fat and trans fat causing excessive fat build up in the arteries and veins in the penis. Remember that fat is required for function of the brain but excessive intake of fat causes fat to build up in the arteries as well as small veins in the penis and brain. That is also the reason that some experts indicate that erectile dysfunction in men is one of many symptoms of heart diseases and stroke.

3. Smoking
Nicotine is a stimulative, it causes the depletion of oxygen in the bloodstream resulting in the heart to beat faster than usual so that it can carry more oxygen to the cells in our body. It also causes the deduction of the amount of nitric oxide (the substance that relaxes or dilates blood vessels, enabling them to open up and bring more blood to the penis and helping to create and maintain an erection) released from the head of the penis resulting in erectile dysfunction. Cigarette fume contains high amounts of cadmium, the harmful and toxic substance causing calcium to stick on the arterial wall resulting in blocking blood flow to the penile veins creating erectile problems.

4. Excessive alcohol drinking
Excessive alcohol drinking over a long period of time not only damages the liver but also raises the levels of triglycerides in the blood. It also leads to high blood pressure, heart failure and an increased calorie intake causing the arteries and vessels in the penis to be clogged up by harmful cholesterol resulting in erection difficulty.

5. Enlarged Prostate
Studies found that there are strong relations between lower urinary tract symptoms and the rate of erectile dysfunction in men with symptoms of enlarged prostate. The main role of the prostate gland is to squeeze fluid into the urethra as sperm moves through during sexual climax. As the prostate enlarges, the layer of tissue surrounding it stops it from expanding, causing the gland to press against the urethra like a clamp on a garden hose resulting in prostate gland muscles surrounding the prostate making it contract and shrink down, increasing the erectile problem.

6. High levels of LDL
The hardening and narrowing of the arteries, causes a reduction in blood flow throughout the body including the vessels in the penis, leading to impotence.

7. Hormone imbalance
Testosterone deficiency can result in a loss of libido and loss of erection. An excess of the hormone prolactin also reduces levels of testosterone. Hormone imbalances can also result from kidney or liver disease.

8. Diabetes
Chronic high levels of blood sugar often damages small blood vessels and nerves throughout the body, impairing the nerve impulses and reducing the blood flow needed for erection.