Sugar can have a negative impact on your love life!
Romance and sex have often been related to something “sweet.” But before you reach for that box of Valentine’s Day candies, take a minute to understand how sugar can be negatively impacting our libido or sex drive.
Basically, sugar affects the production and absorption of several important hormones that are directly related to your sex drive or libido.
Sugar, Insulin and Hormones
Your hormones, and in particular the hormones that regulate sexual desire and performance, such as testosterone, do not operate on their own. They are part of an intricate web of metabolic processes, many of which are directly related to another hormone, insulin, and the level of sugar in your blood. Sugar, and in particular the processed sugars found in junk foods, create spikes in insulin, which leads to insulin resistance and hormone imbalances that negatively impact sexual wellness.
Specifically, sugar negatively impacts sexual wellness in these five ways.
- Decreased testosterone – Particularly in men, increased sugar consumption leading to insulin resistance lowers testosterone levels. Low testosterone can lead to erectile dysfunction, and decreased libido in both men and women.
- Leptin Resistance – Sugar not only causes insulin resistance it causes leptin resistance. Leptin is a hormone that helps regulate appetite. It tells your brain when you are full and to stop eating. When you eat too much sugar, leptin stops working. Your fat cells continue to produce leptin, but your brains ability to “hear” its message shuts off. This condition of “leptin resistance” also leads to a reduction of testosterone production, with the concurrent impact on your sex drive.
- Decreased production of HGH – Over consumption of sugar also reduces production of Human Growth Hormone, orHGH. HGH is secreted by the pituitary gland, and it has many “anti-aging” properties. In the presence of increased insulin, due to excess sugar, HGH drops, which also leads to sexual dysfunction in both men and women.
- Tiredness and Fatigue –Sugar may give you a temporary spike of energy, but too much sugar leads to fatigue, and you can’t perform sexually when you are too tired.
- Increased stress and anxiety – High levels of sugar and insulin lead to chronically elevated levels of cortisol, the so-called “stress hormone.” Elevated cortisol leads to increased stress and anxiety, both of which can cause decreased libido.
Improving Sexual Performance
Want to give your sex life a boost? Cutting down on the intake of processed sugars is a great place to start.
But, that may not be enough to return your hormones to a healthy balance, particularly if you are over 40. The truth is, regardless of what you do, or do not eat, as you get older, you may lose the ability to perform sexually the way you used to.
Men can experience erectile difficulties, while women may start to lubricate less, or find it takes longer to become aroused.
Much of this is due to declining hormones as we age, but also, what you eat, and even the stress of everyday life, can all cause lack of libido, or other sexual wellness issues. The bottom line is, there are many ways to “sweeten” your sex life – without any added sugar!
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