If you’re a man or married to one you’ll probably benefit from this episode of Andrew Huberman’s podcast about Male Sexual Health. Huberman has Dr. Michael Eisenberg as a guest and they discuss the two primary dimensions of male sexual health: fertility and potency. The episode has lots of great… uh, tips… and ideas for what to discuss with your doctor and how to understand the meaning of various tests and procedures.
If you’re a husband, you have a responsibility to take care of your sexual health, both for your own benefit and for the benefit of your wife.. There are a few negative stereotypes that sometimes work against husbands:
- Men shouldn’t go to the doctor unless it’s an emergency
- Erectile dysfunction is shameful and shouldn’t be discussed
- A decline in male sexual health is an inevitable consequence of aging
- Fertility is primarily a female problem
It’s important for us husbands to overcome these stereotypes so that we can talk with our wives and doctors about our health and then take action to protect and improve our sexual health. The Bible is clear that a husband has a responsibility to satisfy his wife’s conjugal rights:
2 But because of the temptation to sexual immorality, each man should have his own wife and each woman her own husband. 3 The husband should give to his wife her conjugal rights, and likewise the wife to her husband. 4 For the wife does not have authority over her own body, but the husband does. Likewise the husband does not have authority over his own body, but the wife does. 5 Do not deprive one another, except perhaps by agreement for a limited time, that you may devote yourselves to prayer; but then come together again, so that Satan may not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.
Husbands: we’ve got a job to do, and we have to keep our tools primed and ready!
(Note: We wrote in 2014 that the term “conjugal rights” includes a lot more than only sex, so go read that post for a deeper understanding.)
Podcast Notes has a good summary of the male sexual health episode; here are their key takeaways:
- Obesity is a risk factor for lowering testosterone and sperm quality
- Fat aromatizes testosterone into estrogen
- Testosterone and sperm quality are barometers of health in men
- Taking exogenous testosterone without medical need can dramatically reduce endogenous testosterone and sperm count & quality
- Semen quality doesn’t just relate to fertility – it’s an excellent marker for overall men’s health
- Men with higher semen tend to live longer, go to the doctor less, and have lower rates of cancer
- Less than 10% of erectile dysfunction is due to a hormonal issue (e.g., low testosterone); most are related to restricted blood flow and could be a foreshadowing of cardiovascular health
- The first path of treatment (if all else is healthy, not obese, not smoking, etc.) is oral therapy like Viagra or Cialis
- Don’t assume sperm is healthy just because you ejaculate – about 50% of men have low semen quality
- To improve sperm quality: avoid heat (sauna, hot tub), don’t smoke, use alcohol in moderation (or avoid it altogether), avoid drugs (especially benzodiazepines and opioids), use marijuana minimally, stay active and at a healthy weight
If reading this post has made you discouraged, don’t be! We don’t have to be perfect, we just have to work towards the best possible version of ourselves. Each of us can take small steps towards improved sexual health, and over time we can maintain and increase our well-being.