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Last updated on April 24, 2014 at 17:35 EDT

Weight Loss Improves Sexual Health Of Overweight Men With Diabetes

August 5, 2011

A new study published in The Journal of Sexual Medicine reveals that in obese men with type 2 diabetes, weight loss improves erectile function, sexual desire and lowers urinary tract symptoms.

Researchers led by Professor Gary Wittert, MBBch, MD, FRACP, FRCP, of the University of Adelaide studied 31 obese men with type 2 diabetes over 8 weeks. The men received either a meal replacement-based low-calorie diet or a low-fat, high-protein, reduced-carbohydrate diet prescribed to decrease intake by 600 calories a day.

In obese men with type 2 diabetes, results found that, a modest weight loss of 5%, resulted in a rapid reversal of sexual and urinary problem, within 8 weeks, and the improvement continued out to 12 months.

“Our findings are consistent with the evidence that not only erectile function, but also lower urinary tract symptoms are a marker of cardio-metabolic risk,” Wittert notes. “The evidence that improvement can be achieved by modest weight loss, in particular when a diet is of high nutritional quality, is of public health significance in framing public health messages that resonate with men.”

“This important paper supports earlier publications that lifestyle is relevant and can positively affect sexual function” stated Irwin Goldstein, Editor-in-Chief of The Journal of Sexual Medicine. “At a time when oral drugs are very popular, it can now be shown that weight loss is an important non-pharmacologic therapeutic intervention in restoring erectile and urinary function and cardio-vascular health. Obesity is an epidemic, and such data reinforce the positive relationship between eating right, losing weight, improved sexual function and voiding and overall cardiovascular health.

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