Meat Week Should Be Renamed Erectile Dysfunction Acceptance Week, say Doctors

The Physicians Committee
NEWS RELEASE January 26, 2014
Meat Week Should Be Renamed Erectile Dysfunction Acceptance Week, say Doctors
Erectile Dysfunction Acceptance Week

Many men who live with the stigma of impotence do not understand its true cause: meat

WASHINGTON— The Physicians Committee—a nonprofit of more than 10,000 concerned doctors—is urging the founders of Meat Week to rename the event “Erectile Dysfunction Acceptance Week,” alerting men to the true consequences of meat consumption. Meat Week, which takes place from Jan. 26 to Feb. 2, is a national campaign promoting meat consumption and “manliness.”

“Your event is the perfect opportunity to send a clear message to men across the country: It’s not you; it’s meat,” writes Susan Levin, M.S., R.D., director of nutrition education for the Physicians Committee to Chris Cantey and Erni Walker, founders of Meat Week. “By embracing the name Erectile Dysfunction Acceptance Week … you’ll help [men] understand that, like constipation, high cholesterol, and obesity, erectile dysfunction is just another side effect of eating meat.” Levin notes that although many men believe their impotence is caused by performance anxiety, the vast majority of cases can be traced back to poor lifestyle habits, especially meat consumption.

The letter is part of the Physicians Committee’s week-long campaign to draw attention to the health hazards of meat consumption, from heart disease to ED, and to help men who suffer from impotence understand its true cause.

Meat-heavy diets are responsible for the arterial damage that leads to both heart disease and ED; the cholesterol and saturated fat in meat can clog arteries and cut off blood flow to the heart (causing a heart attack), brain (causing a stroke) and penis (causing impotence). Obesity and elevated cholesterol levels—both classic signs of a meat-heavy diet—are also tied to ED.

Arterial blockage can be reversed with a plant-based diet, and even a modest diet improvement can help. One study found that normal sexual function returned in almost one-third of the men who ate a healthier diet, compared with a 5 percent recovery in the control group.

An advertisement accompanying the campaign depicts a forlorn, disgruntled man holding a hot dog at a barbecue, alerting men to the risks associated with meat consumption that are skipped at the dinner table. The Physicians Committee has also released a casting call for those who may be interested in appearing in its next erectile dysfunction public service announcement.

A website with resources and a fact sheet about the links between meat consumption and erectile dysfunction as well as a social media campaign featuring the hashtag #ItsNotYouItsMeat accompany the letter and ads. The group will also distribute resources outside D.C. participating restaurants.

For copies of the ads or fact sheet, or to speak with Susan Levin, M.S., R.D., please contact Carrie Clyne at 202-527-7339, or

Founded in 1985, the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine is a nonprofit health organization that promotes preventive medicine, conducts clinical research, and encourages higher standards for ethics and effectiveness in research.

Media Contact:
Carrie Clyne, M.S.
202-527-7339 office
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