Men’s intimate health is linked to a host of good lifestyle decisions. Theories of these subsets often create an illusion that people can improve partly without holistically improving the whole lifestyle. So, figuring out a path at home to better intimate health involves some classic choices that go with healthy lifestyles. The ideal steps to take towards better sexual health for men are steps that are good for their overall health. The general advice, ‘sleep well, and get some exercise regularly,’ seems to hold for intimate health, as it indeed does for overall health. In conversation with Financial Express Online Suhas Misra, CEO of Misters.in, talks about various aspects of men’s health. Excerpts:
How Startups like Misters.in are empowering Men to revive their marital and intimate lives?
The big value that startups offer in any category is in narrowing of focus. So, while products for men’s health and wellness exist in the portfolio of larger companies—and have indeed existed for decades—the specific understanding of the category is essential to address and overcome the barriers and obstacles that block the path of someone seeking to improve sexual function. The obstacles and barriers in the sexual health category originate in the social stigma around sex. Specifically, the social expectation that men are always willing to, and ready to have and get intimate all the time, and anything short of that—whether in limitation of desire, or, say, the inability to have an erection—makes a man much less of a man. This prevents acknowledgment of problems and challenges. As a startup focused on the men’s sexual wellness category, questions of building the ideal access to the category are the most important to us.
How Technology is bridging the gap for Indian society to talk about men’s intimate issues freely?
It is important to note that the biggest role that technology is playing is not in changing the cultural landscape but rather offering an alternative to social conversations, which are absent in the category. Men finding it difficult to discuss intimate issues freely, or indeed honestly, is a challenge not just in India, but rather a challenge that flawed notions of masculinity lead to globally. A smartphone screen is therefore a viable option. Men might find it hard to have a conversation about, say, the frequency of morning erections with their friends, but find it relatively easier to choose an answer to a question about that frequency on the screen. In fact, the role of self-administered questionnaires (SAQs) is a significant one in all domains where stigma and, possibly, shame is at play. Technology has made the SAQ much more interactive and user-friendly, by the elimination of redundant questions (which exist in pen and paper formats), and by providing quick feedback. Startups are leveraging these capabilities to create systems of self-evaluation that can subsequently connect a person answering the questions to the right expert. Our sex quiz, that helps users index their sexual wellness, is extremely popular, and we find that men who take the quiz are quite keen on talking to experts to understand their scores, and then figure out the right products.
What diet & exercise should men follow in regards to maintain healthy intimate life?
Broadly, what works for good health overall, invariably works for good sexual health. According to Misters data, 32% of men who get some exercise regularly have high erection confidence (about getting an erection the next time they have sex), while 25% of men who get no exercise have similar confidence. A lot of research shows the value of both sleep and a good diet for good sexual function. Specifically, exercises that are more cardiovascular seem to be better than others. Misters research suggests yoga and running have greater benefits than working out with weights or walking, but all exercise helps. It is important that exercise and diet plans are formulated in consultation with experts depending on people’s specific contexts.
Scared of judgment from society, men hesitate to talk about ED, What common age of men face more sexual health issues & why?
There is indeed a correlation between frequency of erection challenges with age group but it is important to note that it is not exclusively an issue of ageing alone, as is often implied in popular culture. An analysis by Misters suggests that the percentage of men who report less than flawless erection function (in other words, men who have experience of at least some erection dysfunction), is 59% among adults below the age of 30, 66% among men in their thirties, 73% among men in their forties, and 82% among men in their fifties. So there is indeed an increase in the percentage with age, but it is quite common even among young men. In fact, such data itself is an important part of the overall journey towards helping men index their experience, because it does not emerge in social interactions.
What kind of Ayurvedic products can easily help men to revive their reproductive fitness amidst their busy lifestyle?
Ayurvedic solutions exist for various sexual health challenges that men may face. It is important to understand that Ayurvedic options also require expert advice and conversations with an Ayurvedic doctor are the best way to identify what works best given the overall body type and other such parameters. The most popular Ayurvedic ingredients in the sexual health category are Shilajit, which contains fulvic acid that boosts the production of testosterone, Ashwagandha, that has found global acclaim due to its stress-reducing and sleep-enhancing properties, and Safed Musli, which has often found application in improving ejaculation time among other attributes.
Misters has a Pro series of Ayurvedic products—Misters Shilajit Pro, Misters Ashwagandha Pro and Misters Safed Musli Pro—that have been formulated to ensure that key ingredients are delivered in the ideal dosage, and are stacked with the right supporting herbs to ensure the highest efficacy.