11 Secrets for a Harder Erection and a Mind-Blowing Orgasm

How to elevate your experience and your performance—no pills required.

The days when you could hang a wet beach towel on your erection may be over (assuming you're not 18 anymore), but that doesn't mean you can't improve the angle of the dangle. There's plenty you can do to learn how to come harder, elevate your erection, and have better orgasms without swallowing a pill. And there's good reason to make the effort beyond the obvious: more and more evidence suggests what's good for your penis is also good for your heart and your prospects of hitting 100 years old. Try these scientifically-proven secrets for how to come harder, have a stiffer erection, and more powerful, better orgasms. And to rocket your sex life to stratospheric levels, read the 10 best everyday sex drive boosters for men.

Get plenty of vitamin B12

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B12 is A-1 when it comes to your sexual health. In a recent study, Harvard researchers linked a deficiency of vitamin B12 to erectile dysfunction. They speculate that's because the vitamin is crucial for blood production, and we'll take their word for it. You need 6 micrograms a day, but don't rely on supplements; it's always best to get your nutrients for whole foods. The foods highest in Vitamin B12 are bivalves like clams — one 3 oz serving will give you two weeks' worth — but everyday foods like salmon, fortified cereals, beef, and yogurt are excellent sources that will put you over the top.

Have an orgasm every day

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No objections? According to Harvard Medical School's report Sex and the Prostate, erections are a "use-it-or-lose-it" kind of thing: "Some research suggests that when the penis is flaccid for long periods of time — and therefore deprived of a lot of oxygen-rich blood — the low oxygen level causes some muscle cells to lose their flexibility and gradually change into something akin to scar tissue. This scar tissue seems to interfere with the penis' ability to expand when it's filled with blood." Another reason to keep skin in the game: Recent research shows that having a daily orgasm can slash the risk of prostate cancer by 20% by flushing out chemicals and old cells; prostate disease is a major contributor to erection problems. Find out more in our exclusive report How to Cancer-Proof Your Prostate!

Eat foods high in arginine

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Make sure you have gas in the tank before you're ready to go. Nitric oxide is the Marvin Gaye of natural body chemicals—it's a gas that helps blood vessels relax, so blood can speed where it needs to go, especially below the belt. That can't happen without the essential amino acid L-arginine, which produces nitric oxide. Enough with the science—next time you're at the supermarket, stock your cart with the highest natural food sources of the stuff: Turkey and chicken breast, lean pork loin, walnuts, lentils and pumpkin seeds.

Hit this magic exercise number each week

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A healthy ticker guarantees a healthy penis: Exercise improves cardiovascular health and reduces stress, two crucial factors in getting a quality erection. But what's the sweet spot? A new study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine has the answer. Researchers examined 300 men and found that those who exercised the most reported the highest sexual function, including erection and orgasm quality. Specifically, the guys who had 18 METS, or metabolic equivalents, per week, reported the best sex. METS are measures of the amount of energy spent on an activity, and 18 METS works out to two hours of strenuous cardio like running or swimming or three-and-a-half hours of moderate exercise per week. Jump-start your fitness with The World's Fastest Full-Body Workout!

Eat your anthocyanins

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Natural chemicals that give blue, purple and red foods their hue, anthocyanins are a type of antioxidant that, just like arginine, help your body produce that wondrous wingman nitric oxide. Add blueberries, blackberries, beets, cherries and grapes to your diet to improve blood flow and cardiovascular health.

Mix things up

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As we age and our relationships grow more familiar, we need more and varied sexual stimuli to keep things exciting. Remember that sexual arousal comes from the senses as well as fantasy. Not only is there nothing wrong with fantasizing, creating your own private sexual Sundance Festival in your head can keep her satisfied.

Check your head

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We're supposed to always be ready to go, anytime, anyplace. Not only is that impractical (despite what those Cialis commercials suggest about going at it in a rowboat or movie theater), the pressure to perform is unfair and can lead to a self-fulfilling prophecy. Guess what: It's OK not to be in the mood. "Once anxiety becomes the predominating thought, not only does it flood the system with adrenaline, but it leaves little room for real erotic thoughts that drive arousal," says Madeline Castellanos, M.D., a psychiatrist and sex therapist. "Sex is always best when it's a 'want to,' not a 'have to'." So don't feel guilty about bailing out when you're not up for sex; don't pressure yourself over past performance, and give yourself enough time and space to enjoy the process. You'll definitely have better orgasms for it.

Walk more

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Having better erections is literally as easy as putting one foot in front of the other. A 2015 study published in The American Journal of Cardiology found that a group of men who reported erection problems experienced a 71 percent decrease in impotence symptoms after adopting a walking program. If you can't make it to the gym, aim for 30 minutes of brisk walking a day. Take the stairs at work, park your car further from your destinations and hoof it inside, or schedule walking meetings with your co-workers (that's actually a trend). Or, if you really want to burn some fat, check out the one workout that's proven to turn back time—and melt fat away!

Put down the beer

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Putting your craft-brew habit on ice might sound painful, but the reason why you should will make you wince: The hops in beer are rich in phytoestrogens, plant-based chemicals that raise the amount of estrogen in the blood. Too much of them, and they'll predominate over testosterone, reducing your sex drive and leading to flop sweat in the sack.

Pump up the unpronounceable

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Doing exercises that strengthen the pubococcygeus, the muscles of the pelvic floor will give you better ejaculatory control and help you boost the power and intensity of your ejaculations. You've heard of these, right? The kegel exercises? Here's the how-to: First find your pubococcygeus—the muscles deep in your nether regions that you clench to stop peeing. Tense them for 10 seconds, then relax for 10 seconds and repeat. You can practice these while commuting, watching TV, in the Starbucks line, and no one will know. Start with short intervals and work up to 20-second holds. You can also practice naked with an erection (but hopefully not while commuting or in a Starbucks line); clench and release your muscles to make your erection rise and fall.

Live on the edge

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Use your newly buff PC muscles for another helpful exercise called "edging," or delaying orgasm. While masturbating, practice bringing yourself to the edge of orgasm but not to the point of no return, then stopping or slowing down to regain control and repeating the start/slow sequence several times. A recent study in the Journal of Sex Research found that people who slowed down when they arrived at 90 percent of the way to orgasm and then started arousal again reported more powerful and enjoyable climaxes.

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