Wellness Hub July 2016 Eat fruit to keep your banana happy Tara Ali July 24, 2016 Share If the saying you are what you eat is true, then no man wants to be a wet lettuce. If you want to keep your banana happy, then science has some good news that’s easier than asking your doc for a script for a little blue pill. A study from researchers at Harvard University and the University of East Anglia found that chowing down on certain powerful plant flavonoid-rich foods three to four times a week is associated with a reduced risk of erectile dysfunction. Tasty. Your flavonoid-rich shopping list Citrus fruits: oranges, grapefruit, mandarins, lemons, limes Red and purple berries and fruit: blueberries, cherries, blackberries, radishes and blackcurrant Apples, pears Green tea and red wine More than 50,000 middle-aged men were included in the study, with more than one third of the men suffering new onset erectile dysfunction. But those who consumed a flavonoid-rich diet, in particular the foods above which contain specific flavonoids anthocyanins, flavanones and flavones, were less likely to suffer the condition. Erectile dysfunction – the inability to get or keep an erection – affects almost two thirds of men aged 45 and over, according to a study published in the Medical Journal of Australia. But the flavonoid study was good news for younger men too, with citrus fruits, blueberries and red wine are believed to have particular benefit to those under the age of 70. And while you’re at it, buy a new pair of runners… As well as filling up on fruit and enjoying a glass of Merlot a couple of times a week, if men are active it drives the risk for erectile dysfunction down even further. The flavonoid study of 50,000 men showed that a higher total fruit intake was associated with a 14 per cent risk reduction but a combination of consuming flavonoid-rich foods with exercise - researchers suggested a couple of hours of brisk walking a week - can reduce the risk by 21 per cent. Breaking a sweat has double the pay off, as the health benefits of exercise also lower the risk for other common male health issues. Men with increased body mass index are much more likely to suffer from erectile dysfunction and bedroom problems can be an early indicator of future cardiovascular challenges, according to a study published in the journal PLOS Medicine. The takeaway? Eat citrus and berries, drink red wine and green tea and if you’ve fallen off the workout wagon, get back on. Your body will thank you for it. If you are experiencing erectile dysfunction, see your healthcare professional.