Want a Good Sex Life? Drugs to Avoid

Posted by Admin on December 23, 2008

Today's pharmaceuticals have saved many lives and improved the quality of life for millions. But almost all such drugs have side effects that range from the merely annoying to the downright ugly. Such is the case with four common classes of pharmaceuticals that have been shown to have a disruptive effect on our sex lives. Following are some highlights about these medications and some ways of avoiding their use.

Cholesterol-lowering drugs. Their leading side effects are impotence and lowered sexual desire. A study published in the journal Family Practice in 2002 systematically reviewed the scientific literature and found a solid link between erectile dysfunction and cholesterol-lowering drugs, including both statins, such as Lipitor and Crestor, and fibrates, such as Lopid and TriCor.

For some people, it's simply a matter of life and death that they take these medications. But if possible, for the sake of your sex life, try to switch to exercising a lot more and eating a low-fat, high-fiber diet.

Antidepressants. These pharmaceuticals switch off brain circuits having to do with sexual attraction and arousal, especially the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) like Prozac, Paxil and Zoloft. They lower women's ability to achieve orgasm and men%u2019s potency.

The chemicals decrease the brain's production of dopamine, which strongly influences sexual desire and mating. If you must use an antidepressant, Wellbutrin has the fewest sexual side effects - perhaps because it acts much like the stimulant amphetamine. In addition, your doctor might know of a safe, over-the-counter alternative, such as the herb St. John's wort.

High blood pressure drugs. Research has also linked these medications to ejaculatory disturbances and diminished sex drive. To wean yourself away from them, try eating a low-fat, low-sodium, high-fiber diet, losing weight, exercising regularly, quitting smoking and curbing alcohol consumption.

Birth-control pills. Ironically, as the birth-control pill has freed women to let go in the bedroom, it also has been found to reduce their sexual appetite and pleasure. A study in the Journal of Sexual Medicine in 2006 discovered that women on the pill have much lower libido than those who aren't.

This could be because the pill lowers the female body's production of key sex hormones such as testosterone; increases production of sex-hormone binding globulin (SHBG), a protein that inactivates sexual hormones; produces side effects such as bloatedness, nausea and breast tenderness that curb sexual desire; or a combination of the three.


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