There are many theories regarding what could be causing the steep increase in ED cases for the last decade or two.
However, a new study published in Nature Ecology and Evolution reveals a surprising source – the environment we grew up in as boys.
Low testosterone level has long been considered one of the main causes of Erectile Dysfunction. But why do some men have low levels and others high?
In a new study, researchers set out to debunk the theory that states genes or race determines testosterone levels, arguing that instead, it was environmentally determined.
To do this, they compared the following groups with each other:
1. 107 adult residents of Bangladesh,
2. 59 Bangladeshi men who migrated to the United Kingdom as children,
3. 75 Bangladeshi men who migrated to the UK as adults,
4. 56 second-generation UK-born and raised children of Bangladeshi parents, and
5. 62 UK-born ethnic Europeans.
The scientists collected saliva samples to examine their participant’s testosterone levels, including data such as their height, weight, age of puberty, and other health information from which normal ED studies have excluded.
While testosterone levels were in no way related to their ethnicity, it was a reflection of their surroundings during their childhood.
Those who were raised in the UK, of both of European and Bangladeshi heritage, had higher testosterone levels than those who grew up in Bangladesh.
Money was irrelevant here, as they had compared Bangladeshi residents who were relatively financially well-off with the British residents.
Those who grew up in the UK were also taller and reached puberty earlier than those who grew up in Bangladesh.
Good testosterone level could only develop where there are no other major demands placed on the body, like the combating of infections.
From these findings, they concluded that challenging childhood conditions, like the presence of many infectious diseases or relatively poor nutrition, could compromise the men’s testosterone levels for life.
We can speculate from these findings that the overwhelming fast-food society we live in, that has very little nutritional value, is one of the contributors as to why ED is on such a steep rise.