Does cycling lead to risk of erectile dysfunction?

For the nearly 18 million men who are affected by erectile dysfunction, there are a number of certain lifestyle factors that could play into increasing incompetence.

For the nearly who are affected by erectile dysfunction, there are a number of certain lifestyle factors that could play into increasing incompetence. While a prescription for Viagra can vastly increase sexual performance, eliminating a variety of activities may also reduce the likelihood of erectile dysfunction. One recent study has explored whether cycling is indeed an exercise that can increase the risk of erectile dysfunction.

Researchers from the University College London looked into whether or not the popular sporting activity could be linked to incompetence by recruiting to partake in a questionnaire that interviewed the subjects on a number of topics, including their sexual performance. Cycling has always been revered as a healthy physical activity that can increase cardiovascular health and improve muscle strength and flexibility, but it's always been noted as having a potential link to urogenital disorders such as erectile dysfunction.

To put into perspective on how trendy cycling has become in the U.K., the researchers reported that in 2012, 600 million more miles had been ridden by bicycle on British roads than a decade prior, with 80 percent of these miles being ridden by men. The researchers hoped that their findings would help put to rest any inclinations that cycling is a main component to developing erectile dysfunction.

The questions on the survey pertained mostly to the demographics of the men, as well as their experience and history with cycling. Other inquiries pertained to certain lifestyle and health factors that could also be proponents of ED, such as alcohol intake, current and past cigarette use, history of cardiovascular events as well as treatment for or diagnosis of hypertension, high cholesterol or diabetes. The subjects were then asked to report whether they had suffered from ED in the last five years or if they had officially been diagnosed with the ailment.

In the end, cases of ED were self-reported in 8.4 percent of the participants, and overall, no concrete relationship was observed between the amount of cycling hours and ED. Those who had identified themselves of having previous history of ED were typically found to be more than 60 years old, smokers and had high blood pressure. Essentially, cycling was found to neither increase or decrease the likelihood of ED occurring.

Causes of ED
While cycling has been determined to not be a factor in developing ED, there are a number of causes of the ailment that specifically pertain to health traits. Some of the more notable traits that can produce symptoms of ED include:

  • High cholesterol or blood pressure
  • Being overweight
  • Diabetes
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Low testosterone
  • Enlarged prostates

In addition to these characteristics, certain lifestyle choices can also impact the odds of experiencing ED. Smoking cigarettes and excess drinking are two common triggers of ED, while frequent episodes of stress, anxiety and depression are also considered to increase the risk of incompetence.

While finding ways to cut down stress, eliminate tobacco use and keep healthy in general are the natural ways to combat against ED, a prescription to Viagra can be an even simpler remedy that may help out the millions of men living with the condition.