There are many reasons why a person’s sex drive can suddenly start to wane unexpectedly — excess stress, rapid aging, poor nutrition, and chronic depression are just a few common causes of low libido. But resorting to those little blue pills to fix the problem in an instant should be a last resort option, as there are plenty of natural remedies for treating this common condition that address its root causes Continue reading
…that a versatile Peruvian superfood boosts energy, libido and sexual function, improves fertility, and balances hormones? Continue reading
Kapikachhu or Mucuna pruriens is well-known for its aphrodisiac activities as it is known to increase the sperm count and to increase testosterone levels in the body. The herb is also known to help the body build lean muscle and to break down surplus fat and hence Mucuna or Kapikachhu is often used by athletes, sports persons and body builders as sports medicine for increasing body performance. Continue reading
Today, there are scientifically engineered pills to cure a number of sexual ailments from erectile dysfunction to low sex drive. For those who are interested in taking a more natural approach to boosting their fertility, the good news is that certain natural herbs and tonics that–along with a healthy diet–have been known to increase sperm count. Many not only improve the quantity of sperm, they improve the quality of sperm, while boosting overall sexual health. Horny Goat Weed, for example, does just what you’d expect–it increases sperm count and revs up the libido. Continue reading
Almost everyone wants to improve their love life, find the perfect partner and have better sex. Some of the biggest pharmaceutical sales in history come from performance-enhancing drugs. What about using natural inducements for romance such as chocolate-dipped strawberries, grapes or truffles? Add some of these delectable delights to your arsenal of temptations and woo your lover into bliss.
Chocolate — Chocolate works like no other food to stimulate human sexuality. It’s delicious, melts on the tongue and has an erotic quality even when not thinking of sex. According to Amy Reiley in her book, “Romancing the Stove: The Unabridged Guide to Aphrodisiac Foods,” chocolate helps thin the blood, Continue reading
One can always cringe when we read a news report on the health benefits of cocoa — the takeaway is almost always “eat more chocolate.”
Sure, go ahead and eat more chocolate — if you want to kill yourself.
But if you want the health benefits, you’ll need to stick to pure cocoa and get it the same way I do: so raw you have to steal it from a monkey.
What’s the difference? Glad you asked.
Chocolate is a candy loaded with sugar, soy, and an alphabet soup of chemicals — and if that’s not bad enough, the cocoa used to make it has been treated, Continue reading
A look at how omega-3 fatty acids influence depression, with a flurry of evidence concerning how they may treat major depression and depressive symptoms in bipolar disorders.
Nine double-blind controlled studies were found on how effective omega-3s can be for depressed patients, including those with bipolar disorder. Let’s take a look:
1999: A 16-week study of 30 bipolar patients used 6.2 grams (g) of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) plus 3.4 g of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) — both are fish oil — and tested it versus placebo (olive oil). Patients were also taking antidepressants, benzodiazepines, or mood stabilizers. The omega-3 fatty acid group had a longer remission period than placebo group did. The omega-3 group did better than placebo group in all measures of depression.
2002: A one-month study looked at 20 patients with major depression. It compared 2.0 g of EPA to placebo Continue reading
Question: What are the benefits of taking a progesterone supplement?
Dr. Brownstein’s Answer:
Progesterone is produced in the adrenal glands of men and women, as well as in women’s ovaries. During menstruation, it is the hormone that prepares the uterus for implantation of a fertilized egg. Progesterone also acts as a natural antidepressant and diuretic, helps to activate thyroid hormone, improves libido, protects against breast disease, and can even Continue reading
Habitat: Fenugreek is native to North Africa and the Mediterranean area but today it is grown in many parts of the world. It is undoubtedly one of the most widely cultivated medicinal plants.
Characteristics and properties: Fenugreek was esteemed by the ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Romans as a remarkably versatile medicinal plant which could be used as a remedy for a wide variety of conditions. It was a favorite of Hippocrates, the father of Western medicine, and has been a favorite of most healers and herbalists ever since. It’s most popular use has always been as a galactogogue, a substance which increases a mother’s milk supply, and over the centuries fenugreek has become the most popular and renowned herbal galactogogue of all. Mothers taking fenugreek usually notice an increase in milk flow within 24-72 hours, though it should be noted that a daily amount of at least 3500mg is usually required to produce the effect. For some breastfeeding women it can take 2 weeks to see a change, and if no improvement Continue reading
Couples often ask how frequently they should be having sex. There’s no right answer. After all, a couple’s sex life is affected by so many different factors: age, lifestyle, each partner’s health and natural libido and, of course, quality of their overall relationship to name just a few.
What might seem like too much sex to one person may seem like too little to another: (Remember that scene in Annie Hall, in which Woody Allen and Diane Keaton are discussing their sex life, split-screen, with their respective therapists? Asks Woody’s therapist, “How often do you sleep together?” To which he responds: “Hardly ever. Maybe three times a week.” Meanwhile, Diane Keaton’s therapist is asking her the very same question, and she replies, “Constantly. I’d say three times a week.”)
Every couple has to find their own middle ground Dr. Gail Saltz, says: “If your sex drives are out of balance, Continue reading
The great Amazon rainforest is both the most bio-diverse place on Earth, and the largest natural pharmacy. Many hundreds of Amazonian native remedies have been well documented and studied.
Among them, one of the very most popular is chuchuhuasi (Maytenus krukovii), a very large canopy tree, whose bark has been used as a general remedy for many centuries. Shamans, medicine men and women commonly employ chuchuhuasi for both curative and prophylactic purposes.
Chuchuhuasi is highly popular throughout the Peruvian Amazon especially. Sections of bark are commonly sold in herbal markets, and many fluid preparations of chuchuhuasi can be found. Chuchuhuasi liquors, from wines to distilled alcohols, show up in grocery stores and airport gift shops. To say that chuchuhuasi is everywhere in the Peruvian Amazon is not much of an exaggeration.
Traditionally chuchuhuasi is used to relieve pain and inflammation, to treat arthritis, rheumatism and back pain, to restore vigor after a debilitating disease, as a general tonic, and for relieving menstrual pain and enhancing libido. Continue reading
An occasional problem achieving an erection is nothing to worry about. But failure to do so more than 50% of the time at any age may indicate a condition that needs treatment. Are you at risk for erectile dysfunction (ED)? Take the following quiz and find out.
- Are you overweight? Yes or No
- Do you have any of the following conditions?
- High cholesterol
- Atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries from plaque)
- Kidney disease
- Do you:
- Drink alcohol
- Use recreational drugs
- How often do you exercise?
- Once or twice a week
- A couple of times a month
- I never seem to get around to it
- How often do you feel stressed?
- Much of the time
- Overweight men are more likely to have ED
- Common causes of ED include nerve diseases, psychological conditions and diseases that affect blood flow. A number of prescription drugs and over-the-counter drugs may also cause ED by affecting a man’s hormones, nerves or blood circulation
- Tobacco, alcohol and recreational drugs can all damage a man’s blood vessels and/or restrict blood flow to the penis, causing ED
- Regular exercise can reduce the risk of ED
- Stress and anxiety are leading causes of temporary ED
Questions to Ask Your Doctor
- Does my erectile dysfunction stem from an underlying illness?
- Could any of my medicines be causing this problem or making it worse?
- Could stress or a psychological problem be to blame for my erection difficulties?
- Are there medications I can take?
Did You Know?
- Misinformation about erectile dysfunction includes the notion that ED, also called impotence, is an unavoidable consequence of aging. ED is not considered normal at any age, nor is it normal for a man to lose erectile function completely as a result of being older.
- Another myth is that tight underwear causes ED. While physical and psychological conditions can lead to ED, tight underwear is not to blame. Tight underwear may be a factor in producing a low sperm count.
- ED can be treated with oral medications, sex therapy, penile injections and surgery, such as penile implants.
- Intercavernous injection therapy is a medication injected directly into the penis to treat ED.
- Intraurethral therapy is a suppository medication that is inserted into the urethra to treat ED.
- Urologist is a doctor specially trained to treat problems of the male and female urinary systems, and the male sex organs.
Know Your Numbers
- At least 20 million American men have some degree of erectile dysfunction, and about one in 10 adult males suffers from ED long-term.
- About 40% of men in their 40s report at least occasional problems getting and maintaining erections. So do more than half (52%) of men aged 40 to 70, and about 70% of men in their 70s.
- Failure to achieve an erection less than 20% of the time is not unusual; treatment is rarely needed.
- Atherosclerosis alone accounts for 50% to 60% of ED cases in men 60 and older. Between 35% and 50% of men with diabetes have ED, and ED may be a predictor for other vascular problems.
Knowing how to boost your metabolism naturally can offer great health benefits in addition to romantic activity. Nutrition plays an important role in desire and exercise can come into play when it comes to energy levels. Certain medical conditions can cause a decrease in libido, so it is important to discuss the symptom with your physician.
Medical conditions that are linked to low libido are not always serious in nature but the condition can be a symptom of a serious health condition. Treating any underlying medical condition can help create balance, naturally improving energy levels and sex drive. Some problems that can interfere include:
• Mood disorders
• Chronic fatigue
• Heart problems
• Hormone imbalance
Any medical condition that interferes with hormone production, mood, or energy levels can have an effect on libido.
The first step in the process is to address any mental processing problems that may interfere with the condition. In some cases, the loss of libido is psychological in nature, and it can stem from lack of confidence, disinterest in your partner, or feelings of guilt or inadequacy. Addressing these issues can naturally boost libido.
Focusing on positive aspects of yourself and your partner can help. Boosting your mood with sensual mental images throughout the day is an excellent visualization exercise that can help. Thoughts and feelings are closely linked, but few recognize that exercise and mental processing are closely related as well.
Exercise helps libido in many ways. It boosts energy and it improves circulation. In addition, it helps to tone and tighten the body, and this can alleviate some feelings of oneself-consciousness in some individuals. Any activity that gets the blood flowing can improve circulation and improve sex drive.
Adding healthy foods to your daily menu can offer excellent benefits as well. Consider some of the following foods, some of which are considered to be aphrodisiacs.
• Cinnamon and nutmeg work in a number of ways. The aroma of these spices can enhance desire, and nutmeg has been shown to work much like Viagra in animal studies.
• Chocolate is a natural choice because it sets off the same chemicals in the brain that are released when a person falls in love. Phenylethylalamine is the helpful chemical in this natural aphrodisiac.
• Figs offer high levels of amino acids believed to help increase energy.
• Almonds contain healthy fats that improves brain function, promoting alert attention.
• Avocados contain essential fatty acids as well. This food is traditionally associated with sensuality.
• Oysters in the half shell are other foods closely associated with sensuality. This food contains lots of zinc, an element effective in improving male performance.
• Chili peppers can promote circulation; working much like exercise does to improve overall body performance.
In addition to the suggestions here, Discovery Health offers 10 ways to boost libido naturally. Combining different approaches is the ideal way to improve your health as well as your drive.
Ginseng: There are several types of ginseng, two of which are Siberian ginseng, which is typically used as an aphrodisiac, and red Korean or Asian ginseng, which is used in Chinese traditional medicine and has slightly more research behind it, Saigal says.
Ginseng, like a lot of herbs, is thought to work by helping the body make more nitric oxide — as does Viagra. A couple of good studies showed some effect from ginseng, so people can look at this as an alternative to Viagra. But it’s not going to be as effective as Viagra or Levitra or Cialis.
Ginseng appears to help women, too. Ginseng gives people energy and may improve mood, and you need energy and endurance for sex.
Black Cohosh: In the past, black cohosh has been used to treat arthritis and muscle pain and was traditionally used for “female” complaints. Today, it is marketed to treat hot flashes, night sweats, vaginal dryness, premenstrual syndrome, and other menopausal symptoms.
Black cohosh has estrogen-like properties, and increases blood flow to the pelvis — which increases arousal and response to sexual stimulation. More blood flow means more lubrication, and that’s good for sex. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is funding studies of black cohosh as a treatment for menopausal symptoms.
Chasteberry (Vitex): Chasteberry is native to the Mediterranean region and western Asia — and is approved in Germany for premenstrual and menstrual problems. It is said to increase sexual desire by boosting the hormone progesterone and the brain chemical dopamine.
Chasteberry also decreases the brain chemical prolactin that interferes with sexual desire. It works for some patients..
L-Arginine (Arginine): Arginine is an amino acid the body needs for many functions, like boosting immunity. The body also uses arginine to produce nitric oxide — an effect similar to the way Viagra works. Arginine has been found to improve blood flow to the penis.
One study showed improvements when L-arginine, glutamate, and yohimbine were combined. (Yohimbine is FDA approved as a drug therapy for ED, so how much of the effect was due to arginine is unknown.) Another study showed “significant improvement in sexual function” when L-arginine and pycnogenol were combined — but not when L-arginine was used alone.
Arginine is generally safe, although there may be drug interactions — especially with high blood pressure drugs. In addition, men taking Cialis, Levitra, or Viagra – or nitroglycerin (nitrates) for chest pain (angina) — should be cautious as combining them with L-arginine can cause a potentially serious drop in blood pressure.
It’s something to try. And if it works for those arteries, it could also help the heart arteries, too. Men with heart disease might benefit most from taking arginine.
Ginkgo: Ginkgo has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for thousands of years. Ginkgo leaf extract is used today to boost mental power, help Alzheimer’s, and treat tinnitus, asthma, fatigue, and sexual dysfunction. Some studies show that gingko enhances the effects of nitric oxide — which allows better blood flow to the penis.
Ginkgo is one of those herbs that are pretty popular. The thing is there’s no great data for sexual function on it. Ginkgo is thought to help with sexual dysfunction related to antidepressant use. One study showed that ginkgo made no difference; the other showed some slight difference. There may be a large placebo effect, but there have been anecdotal reports that it helps some people.
Yohimbe: Yohimbe is derived from bark of the yohimbe tree, native to Africa — and traditionally used as an aphrodisiac. In current times, this extract has been shown to be moderately effective in treating ED. It may perhaps increase erections and libido, because it has some effect on the brain.
Some studies indicate that yohimbe may help ED in men taking antidepressants, although research in this area is limited. Caution: Some yohimbe bark extracts may not contain significant amounts of yohimbine, so they may not have these effects. There’s a buyer-beware issue. A lot of supplements use names that sound like yohimbe but are basically worthless. Look at the content label. Make sure it’s from the yohimbe tree. Also, look for the name of the active ingredient — yohimbine or yohimbine hydrochloride.
Maca: Maca is a vegetable native to Peru that is traditionally used as an aphrodisiac, There have been rat studies, but studies to support its use are very limited, but because it’s a vegetable, maca won’t hurt you.
Pycnogenol: Pycnogenol is an extract of the bark from French maritime pine. It is believed that pycnogenol helps protect blood vessels and boost production of nitric oxide — similar to L-arginine, yohimbe, ginkgo, and ginseng.
Some studies show that taking L-arginine and pycnogenol together boosts nitric oxide production. Those weren’t randomized trials [meaning the combination wasn’t compared to placebo], but there was an effect. So there’s some effect in combining the two.
ArginMax: If female patients are interested in herbs, Hutcherson guides them to ArginMax (a combination of Panax ginseng, L-arginine, ginkgo biloba, damiana, multivitamins, and minerals).
Two large clinical studies found that ArginMax improved sexual function in menopausal and other women with low sexual desire.
Zestra for Women: Zestra, a blend of botanical oils and extracts, is designed to increase female sexual desire, arousal, pleasure, and satisfaction when applied to the female genitalia. Zestra’s ingredients include: borage seed oil, evening primrose oil, angelica extract, coleus extract, vitamin C, and vitamin E.
In a preliminary study, Zestra was shown to increase sexual sensation, arousal, pleasure, and satisfaction in “normal women” and women with arousal problems. Zestra also helped with sexual side effects related to antidepressants.
You rub it on your clitoris, which is supposed to increase blood flow.
The NIH is launching a clinical study comparing Zestra to placebo in women with a variety of sexual dysfunctions, including problems with interest, desire, arousal, and orgasm.
Vitamin E: Vitamin E oil — when applied to the vagina — helps improve lubrication. It is very effective. .
Cautionary Notes About DHEA Supplements
DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone) is a natural hormone that is converted into male and female sex hormones in the body. DHEA is sold as an antiaging supplement that improves energy, strength, and muscle, plus it increases immunity and burns fat.
However, the NIH says, “there is no conclusive evidence that DHEA supplements do any of these things,” and “there is little scientific evidence to support the use of DHEA as a ‘rejuvenating’ hormone.”
Long-term effects of DHEA supplements have not been studied — but there are “early signs that these supplements, even when taken briefly, may have detrimental effects on the body, including liver damage.”
Even if DHEA does rev your libido, it won’t help erections, If the goal is a better erection, getting more testosterone won’t help. We don’t know the long-term effects of DHEA
Keeping Your Libido Healthy
Pills aren’t the only answer. If flagging sexual desire is the problem, find something that adds spice. Find something interesting that stimulates your mind, since the brain is the largest sex organ.
Her libido-boosting suggestions:
- Sleep in the bedroom. Have sex anywhere else — the den, kitchen, or laundry room.
- Seize the moment wherever, whenever, it hits.
- Buy something new. New lingerie definitely qualifies.
- Send hot sizzling notes to each other during the day.
- Buy a sex toy. Read an erotic novel together. Watch an erotic video.
There are so many things, you can never run out of ideas. What helps most — the best aphrodisiac — is going on a field trip to an adult store together. Try different things, touch, giggle, have a good time. You find you can’t wait to get home to try them.
Protecting Your Sexual Desire
To keep your libido in prime form, you’ve got to walk, jog — do some kind of aerobic exercise — daily. Maybe it doesn’t sound sexy, but a two-mile walk every day keeps the blood flowing.
Losing weight (if you’re obese) and eating a low-fat diet also helps restore sexual function. You’ll feel better about yourself, and your partner will be more interested in you. You’ll also help your heart. And that’s very sexy.
According to folklore, natural aphrodisiacs may help to raise libido and increase desire. They’re being used by an increasing number of people to give their sex lives a boost.
But some of them may cause side effects or interact with medications and others haven’t been proven. Here are the facts about 10 popular aphrodisiac herbs and supplements.
Ginseng is one of the bestselling herbs in the United States. In much of Asia, ginseng is prized as a revitalizer for the whole body, partly due to the human-like shape of the root.
2) Horny Goat Weed
According to folklore, horny goat weed’s reputed aphrodisiac qualities were discovered when a Chinese goat herder noticed increased sexual activity in his flock[ after they ingested the weed.
Fo-ti is also called he shou wu, which means “black-haired Mr. He” in Chinese. This name refers to a legend of an older villager named Mr. He who took fo-ti and restored his black hair, youthful appearance and sexual vitality.
L-arginine is not a herb but an amino acid that has numerous functions in the body. It has been used for erectile dysfunction and is often promoted as a Viagra alternative.
Damiana is a plant native to Mexico and the southern United States. It has been widely used as an aphrodisiac in Mexico for men and women.
6) Tribulus Terrestris
Tribulus terrestris is a herb that has been used in the traditional medicine of China and India for centuries. It was only in the mid-90s when Eastern European Olympic athletes claimed that tribulus contributed to their success that tribulus became known in the North America
7) Tongkat Ali
] Tongkat Ali is a tree native to Malaysia, Thailand, and Indonesia. It was dubbed the “Asian Viagra” in a May 1999 report in the New Sunday Times.
According to folklore, ancient Incan warriors took maca before going off to battle to make them physically strong. However, they were later prohibited from taking it, in order to protect conquered women from their heightened libidos.
9) Muira Puama
Muira puama, also called “potency wood” is a small Brazilian tree that grows across the Amazon river basin. It has a long history of use in Brazilian folk medicine as an aphrodisiac.
Yohimbe is an evergreen tree that grows in western Africa in Nigeria, Cameroon, the Congo and Gabon. Yohimbe bark extracts are widely promoted online and in health food stores as a natural aphrodisiac to increase libido and treat erectile dysfunction