When the new year rolls around, many people turn their attention to improving their health and make resolutions to try out a new diet or join a gym. Choices like these are great for personal well-being, and they have the added benefit of improving your sex life. If you’re a gay man, you may have some additional health needs to stay on top of in 2018 – but isn’t having your hottest year yet worth the extra effort? Here are five resolutions that can help you stay healthy and virile next year:
1)If you are having any trouble getting or keeping an erection, consider getting some of those “magic pills” that increase blood circulation, such as Viagra and Cialis. Before taking any erectile dysfunction drugs, however, you should consult your doctor and discuss potential complications with other medications you’re taking. ED drugs are dangerous for patients who are taking nitroglycerine for coronary artery disease. ED pills also don’t mix well with some “recreational drugs.” Certain HIV medications can increase both the effectiveness of ED pills and their potential side effects, so the smallest possible dose of ED drugs must be used to balance safety with performance.
2) Practice safe sex and protect yourself against AIDS. Knowing that your partner has passed an HIV test is not always enough, as the virus can be transmitted before it shows up in a test. The deadly virus can find its way into your bloodstream through any minor break or crack, either in your skin or in the mucous membranes lining any body cavity. When in doubt, heed the usual advice about using condoms or avoiding intercourse. Condoms may cramp your style, and, yes, sex feels a lot better without them – but your life is at stake. You can love sex even with latex. You just have to do it with discernment, caution, and care.
3)One issue that is blind to sexual orientation is prostate cancer, the second-leading cause of death in men in America. More than 200,000 cases are detected each year in the US alone. The best way to beat prostate cancer is with an early diagnosis, and the key to early diagnosis is a yearly digital rectal examination by a qualified examiner, a PSA (prostate-specific androgen) blood test, and an ultrasonic-guided prostate biopsy, if needed. Published data has shown that a PSA in conjunction with a digital rectal examination doubles the detection rate of early prostate cancer. Though bringing up cancer can feel scary, asking for a PSA screening is one of the best ways you can protect yourself from this threat.
4)Make the resolution to turn up the heat on your sex life – have as much safe sex as you can fit into your schedule. Frequent sexual activity is a sure way to increase your cardiovascular fitness, mental acuity, inner enthusiasm, and psychological tranquility. This is the time to be more innovative in the bedroom and more adventuresome with your partner. The greatest aphrodisiac is love itself. Be creative, be bold, be proactive, and care passionately about the needs of your partner, and the rewards will be endless.
5) A healthy diet and vigorous exercise program are essential for sexual fitness. Doctors recommend 30 minutes of aerobic exercises four or five times a week to maintain cardiovascular fitness. Avoid overeating, refrain from excessive drinking, and make sure you consume plenty of fiber. A diet high in fiber and protein but low in saturated fats and simple sugars is effective at both helping men maintain their prowess and preventing diseases such as atherosclerosis, diabetes, and prostate cancer.
Dudley S. Danoff, MD, FACS, is the attending urologic surgeon and founder/president of the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center Tower Urology Group in Los Angeles, California. He is the author of The Ultimate Guide to Male Sexual Health: How to Stay Vital at Any Age.
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