Solutions for Erectile Dysfunction
   by James Occhiogrosso, N.D.

Health Naturally - Home Page

About this Article

This article is the first part of an extensive booklet on Erectile Dysfunction (ED) that discusses techniques to help you determine the cause of your ED and describes several techniques to resolve it.

The complete booklet includes both parts in a printable, bindable booklet, and is about 40 pages long. The idea is that if you know what is causing your ED, you can approach the problem in an intelligent way to try to resolve it. It provides detailed information on nutritional items and herbal supplements known to help with ED, as well as FDA approved drugs and other medical solutions like Vacuum Erection Devices, Penile Implants, TENS and Shock Wave therapy. It also discusses research on some new techniques and clinical studies that are on the horizon. The combined information can help a man with erectile dysfunction from any cause achieve a better sexual performance.

The complete booklet contains some condensed information from my book “Your Prostate, Your Libido, Your Life”, mostly about lifestyle and nutritional or herbal items. If your ED appears to be mostly due to these causes, purchasing the book would probably be a good choice for you. You can purchase the book on my website and I will include the booklet at no additional cost. Or, you can purchase the booklet on my website for $12.50.  See instructions at the bottom of this article or click here to order.


Erectile dysfunction (ED) is generally defined as the inability of a man to attain or maintain an erection sufficient for vaginal penetration and satisfactory sexual performance. It is highly prevalent worldwide and affects most men in the age group of 30 thru 70 at some point in their lives. ED is generally an age dependent issue effecting about 3-4% of men in their 30’s and 40’s to well over 50% of men by age 65. This article explores various issues about ED to allow you evaluate your specific situation and symptoms and help you determine the cause or causes of your ED.

By using this information in this article, a man with ED should be able to determine the approximate cause of his ED, and using the information in the associated booklet, set a plan for resolving it. Once you have a good handle on the cause(s), you will have a much better chance of rectifying the problem.

It is unfortunate that unscrupulous supplement manufacturers take advantage of the suffering male with late night TV advertisements for worthless products—most of which contain one or two ingredients that research shows may have some kind of a positive effect on ED sufferers. The problem with all of this is that the average male wants a quick fix, leaving him vulnerable to the manipulation of these late-night advertisements which promise—but rarely deliver results—instant or otherwise. Many men fall victim to these advertisements promising an instant cure for ED. In my years of practice, the only instant action I’ve seen from any of these “quick fixes” — is how quickly they can take your money!

There are many external influences that affect ED. Thus, depending on the specific cause of your ED, there are also many ways it can be treated. The good news is that, in most cases, ED problems can be overcome with patience and perseverance. Multiple natural substances, both nutritional and herbal, can help to resolve the problem, but they must be taken at the correct dosage levels and for the correct issue. To have any chance of rectifying ED, you must have a good handle on the cause.

Before getting into great detail, we might acknowledge that many ED symptoms can be quickly resolved with one of the FDA approved ED drugs. However, no drug actually cures the problem. At best, a drug covers up both symptoms and causes of the problem. Thus, over time, drugs allow the conditions that caused ED in the first place to become worse. Natural solutions can help the body heal by providing it with needed nutrients, and thus, can actually cure a problem.

I once gave a lecture about the potential long-term use of an ED drug allowing a circulatory problem to continue progressing and go undetected for years. After the lecture, I was approached by a lady who told me her husband used increasing doses of an ED drug for many years. While the drug permitted a decent sex life, it also allowed his underlying cardiac problems to go unnoticed until a massive heart attack ended his life. In my opinion, the only way to use ED drugs—is as a crutch to get over the immediate issue—while you take steps to address underlying problems. Once these underlying problems are resolved, the ED drug may no be longer needed.

Determining an Approach to Solving ED

Any man with ED should first determine the most likely cause for his problem before attempting to rectify it. Using this approach, he can then determine the best path to try to rectify it. In general, there are five main causes of ED.

Natural Causes — This can be a combination of aging, poor nutrition, lack of exercise, unrelated illnesses, circulatory issues and general poor health.

Medications — Many prescription medications, especially anti-depressants and some cholesterol lowering drugs, as well as drugs for treating prostate conditions like BPH can often cause a loss of libido as well as ED.

Hormonal Imbalances — a low free testosterone level coupled with a high estrogen level can often cause a severe loss of sexual desire (libido) as well as problems getting and maintaining an erection. When ED is accompanied by a lack of vigor, poor muscle tone, depression, and low energy—all symptoms of declining testosterone levels—hormone testing and balancing are definitely in order.

Underlying Medical Conditions — Many medical conditions can cause or exacerbate ED. Chief among these is uncontrolled diabetes, hypertension, or arteriosclerosis. The first symptom of cardiac insufficiency is often the onset of ED.

Medical Procedures or Physical Trauma — Surgery for prostate, colon or rectal cancer, and any surgery in the pelvic area can disturb the nerves that are crucial for an erection. Even with surgery that takes attempts to preserve nerve function, the ED can last a long time (sometimes years) or be totally irreversible. Spinal injuries as well as any physical trauma to the pelvic area can also initiate ED. Depending on the amount of damage done, the condition may quickly resolve itself or be totally irreversible.

The first two items above can often be resolved with an improvement in nutrition and lifestyle, intelligent use of herbal preparations, and evaluation of prescription medications for side effects that cause ED. Often relatively minor changes can achieve a major reversal of symptoms. Information on dietary and lifestyle changes as well as some herbs and nutrients that may help with ED are provided in Part Two of this booklet.

The third item, hormone balancing, requires testing of free hormone levels—especially testosterone, progesterone and estrogen—with a home saliva test kit. Such kits are available from my website and are quick and easy to use.

The last two items above represent illnesses or physical trauma, and are usually more difficult to overcome. However, in many cases trauma to the erectile nerves (medically known as neuropraxia) is not due to direct severing of the nerves, but simply that the nerves are in shock. In this case, there is much that can be done to accelerate the process of healing, often resulting in complete restoration of erectile function. This is also discussed in Part Two of the booklet.

Once you have categorized your ED into one of the five broad groups detailed above, you can subcategorize it further into one or more of the groups shown below. This may sound simple, but it is not. The causes of ED vary widely and you may need the help of your health professional to guide you. By categorizing the approximate (or exact) cause of your ED, you may be able to do the appropriate research, and by trial and error, resolve or at least improve your condition. Again, you may need the help of your health professional to guide you, but if you are doing it yourself, the information presented in this booklet should be of great help.

The causes of ED fall into some broadly defined categories. Below are broadly defined categories for most general causes of ED. Working with your health practitioner, (a Naturopath, or Natural Health Practitioner if possible) you can use it to approximate the root cause of your ED. Armed with that knowledge, you can then do your research to select nutrients and/or herbals supplements that might help with your condition. Note that all of the conditions listed below overlap considerably.

Circulatory Issues

This is the most prevalent issue relating to lifestyle and general health, and is broadly defined as an issue of poor blood circulation. To achieve a satisfactory erection, a man must have relatively decent blood circulation throughout his body. The penis becomes erect through a series of neurological and physical processes. The neurological process occurs when the man becomes sexually aroused, which then triggers the physical process of inflating the penis with blood to achieve a sufficient erection. However, if arteries are clogged with plaque deposits they certainly cannot deliver adequate blood flow to the penis for an erection and thus, his erection is either weak, subsides quickly, or is non-existent. The most common circulatory issues that cause ED include but are not limited to the following conditions:

High Blood Pressure, Diabetes, High Cholesterol, Lack of Exercise, Obesity, Smoking, excessive Alcohol use, and Circulatory or Cardiac insufficiency.

Any of these issues alone may cause ED, but in most cases, it is a combination of several of them that produce the problem. Of course, the above is a simplification of a very complex problem, but knowing that his ED may be caused by a seemingly unrelated problem, goes a long way towards motivating a man to at least attempt to resolve the underlying problem.

Hormonal Imbalances

As a man ages, it is quite natural for him to encounter hormonal imbalances. This usually presents as a low free testosterone level, a high estrogen level or both. In any case, it is the ratio between testosterone and other hormones that typically causes a problem. Low testosterone levels usually a cause a loss of libido in an aging man. Depending on how low his testosterone level is, it can also result in erectile dysfunction. The only way to know for sure is to have one’s hormones tested. This can be done quite simply with a home saliva test kit. ED is often accompanied by a lack of vigor, poor muscle tone, depression, and low energy—all symptoms of declining testosterone levels. Click here to go to a page where you can order a salivary hormone test.

Nutritional Deficiencies

This is one of the most difficult causes to pin down, but nutritional deficiencies, especially if severe, can directly cause ED. One of the most common is a zinc deficiency. While difficult to diagnose, nutritional deficiencies are the easiest to rectify. A blend of various vitamins and minerals as well as a few herbals may resolve the problem quite easily, albeit it may take a few months for the improved nutrition to make an effect.

Pharmaceutical Medications

Many medications, particularly those used for prostate problems, as well as anti-depressants and some statin drugs can directly cause a loss of libido or ED. If you are taking any prescription medications, it is prudent for you to research each one for its effects on sexual performance. Many men simply ask their doctors about this and almost always get a negative or non-definitive answer. Many doctors are in denial about the side effects of the medications they prescribe, and drug representatives will rarely give their doctor clients a clear picture of them, whether they know about them or not. The only solution is to do the research yourself, or visit a health practitioner that is well aware of medication side effects or will research them for you.

Surgery or Trauma

Treatment for prostate or other cancer that involves surgery or radiation is well known to be a cause of ED subsequent to or concurrent with the treatment. To resolve such ED requires a high degree of motivation as well as a good working knowledge of the physiology of an erection and possibly the cooperation of your doctor. There are many different techniques for restoring function lost thru surgery or radiation.

Emotional Issues

A man may experience ED as a result of emotional problems, particularly stress. Often, a man will suffer temporary erectile dysfunction due to the stress of a divorce, loss of a job, death of a loved one, or simply the stress of living. In cases like this, the ED usually vanishes when the stress issue causing it is resolved. If an anti-depressant is prescribed, research it so you can take the lowest dose that will help you, without exacerbating your ED problem. If the drug causes deterioration in performance, tell your doctor immediately, so it can be changed to one that doesn’t affect you as much.


Erectile Dysfunction is a serious problem that has a profound emotional effect on both the suffering man and his significant other. In many cases, a man’s doctor is not very sensitive to his suffering, and if a prescription drug doesn’t help, his arsenal for fixing the problem is essentially empty.

Fortunately, there are many natural substances as well as medical devices and treatments that can help a man suffering from ED. Unfortunately, it may take a course of trial and error to determine what works and what doesn’t, or to find a doctor that is willing to work with you.

A printable 40 page booklet available is available that provides detailed information on nutritional items and herbal supplements known to help with ED, as well as FDA approved drugs and other medical solutions like Vacuum Erection Devices, Penile Implants, TENS therapy, and a promising new approach called Shock Wave therapy. The booklet also discusses research on some new techniques and clinical studies that are on the horizon that one can investigate if other approaches fail. A motivated guy suffering from Erectile Dysfunction (ED) will find a multitude of ways to try to resolve his problem in this booklet, and, hopefully, find one that will work for him.

The booklet is available in bindable, printable format and is free for my current clients, (defined as anyone who has purchased from me within the last 6 months) and available to others for a nominal charge of $12.50.

Click here to order the complete  booklet.

You can also call 239-652-0421 or email me at to order your booklet.

Copyright © 2007-2016, James Occhiogrosso, N.D.,
All Rights Reserved Worldwide

Phone:  239-652-0421

Permission is herby granted to post this article on another website provided that the entire article including this copyright notice with website address, email address, phone number and all references (if any) are copied and shown with the article.