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The Mediterranean diet isn't just good for your health — it's also great for your sex life

couple toasting with wine
Klaus Vedfelt/Getty Images
  • The Mediterranean diet is consistently ranked as the best diet for your health.

  • It may also improve your sex life, according to a sex therapist and registered dietician.

  • It lowers cholesterol and inflammation, which could boost libido and reduce erectile dysfunction.

For six years in a row, the Mediterranean diet has been ranked as one of the healthiest ways to eat by experts.

The diet, which gets points for being easy to follow, involves eating lean protein, fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.

And there's another plus for the Mediterranean diet: it might also benefit your sex life.

Dr. Janis Roszler, a sex therapist and registered dietician, told Business Insider the Mediterranean diet is probably the best diet out there for improving sexual health issues. Roslzer shared ways the Mediterranean diet can boost your sex life.

It could help prevent erectile dysfunction

The Mediterranean diet is great for lowering cholesterol, and Roszler said that high cholesterol can negatively impact your sexual health. This is especially true for people who suffer from erectile dysfunction.

"In order to have a healthy erection, you need good blood flow and you need good nerve conduction," Roszler said. She noted that high cholesterol can lead to "fatty buildup in your blood vessels that could slow blood flow."

A 2020 study found that following a Mediterranean diet could prevent erectile dysfunction, particularly because of the reduction of high-cholesterol foods like red meat, processed meats, dairy, fried foods, and saturated fats.

It can also improve arousal for women

According to Roszler, the Mediterranean diet features anti-inflammatory foods such as fatty fish, leafy vegetables, and red wine — while reducing inflammatory foods like added sugars and refined carbohydrates.

Reducing inflammation "means that your blood vessels are healthier, that your body is working more effectively, that everything is functioning better," she said.

A 2019 study suggested that an anti-inflammatory diet like the Mediterranean diet could improve sexual arousal and desire in women, though the research is still preliminary.

The Mediterranean lifestyle helps your sex life, too

While your diet is important, Roszler said that lifestyle factors also play a huge role.

For example, while drinking a little alcohol can help get people in the mood, she said too much booze can "slow everything down in your system." The Mediterranean diet discourages excessive alcohol, with fans of the diet drinking a moderate amount of red wine instead.

She also said that "stress is a real libido killer," as is lack of adequate sleep.

"In order to really connect with someone and enjoy the sexual experience, you've got to be present," Roszler said.

She said the Mediterranean lifestyle is "very holistic" because it prioritizes socializing, rest, and physical movement, all of which can help boost your desire to have sex.

Read the original article on Business Insider