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This One Thing May Predict Your Mortality if You're a Middle-Aged Man

Some of the warning signs might not be obvious.
FACT CHECKED BY Emilia Paluszek

There is a fountain of youth, but one good step toward living longer is being vigilant about your health, listening to what your body's telling you. Some of the warning signs might not be obvious. That's the takeaway from a new study that indicates a certain symptom might be more serious than you believe—and could even point to a risk of early death. Read on to find out more—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss Already Had COVID? These Symptoms May "Never Go Away".


This One Thing May Predict Your Mortality

couple in live holding hads while lying in bed together

British researchers say that men who have a lack of morning erections may have an increased chance of dying. The reason: Arteries supply blood to the penis, and if they're not functioning properly, that could be a sign of heart disease. 

The findings were recently published in the journal Age and Ageing. Researchers looked at 1,788 men between the ages of 40 and 79, who participated in the European Male Ageing Study (EMAS). The study subjects completed questionnaires that included any sexual symptoms, and they were followed for about 12 years.

They found that erectile dysfunction and poor morning erections were associated with increasd mortality. 

The researchers' conclusion: "Sexual symptoms, in particular erectile dysfunction, predict all-cause mortality independently of sex steroids and can be an early warning sign of a poor health status."


Risk of Heart Attack Within "Three to Five Years"

man dealing with chest pain, heart disease

"Loss of morning erections are a sign your arteries are not functioning properly," Dr. Geoff Hackett, former president of the British Society for Sexual Medicine, told the UK Sun. "That means you are at significant risk of a heart attack or stroke within three to five years. This applies to celibate, single men — not just those who have a partner."


Have ED? Talk to Your Doctor

Sad man sitting on a bed, girlfriend in the background.

Experts say that you should consult your doctor if you're experiencing erectile dysfunction—being unable to get an erection, or to keep one long enough for satisfying sex—at any age. ED could indicate a serious health problem, as the UK study suggests. In addition to heart trouble, erectile dysfunction could be an early sign of type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure or kidney disease, among other conditions. ED could also be caused by medications you're taking or psychological issues like depression. And to protect your life and the lives of others, don't visit any of these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.

Michael Martin
Michael Martin is a New York City-based writer and editor. Read more about Michael
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