(Natural News) Chocolate has always been associated with feelings of happiness and pleasure. It has been proven to reduce stress levels and alleviate pain by triggering the release of endorphins in the brain. It can also affect serotonin levels which dictate our mood. However, there is very little scientific evidence to back up the claim that chocolate is a true aphrodisiac. On the other hand, the foods listed below have been studied for their libido-enhancing properties.
1. Maca powder
Due to its high fiber and mineral content, this powder has become the new darling of dietitians and health enthusiasts. Maca powder is produced from a Peruvian plant that has stress-relieving, energy-boosting, and mood-enhancing properties. According to a noteworthy study, maca can also be a potent aphrodisiac as men who consumed maca regularly experienced an increase in sexual desire after eight weeks. Moreover, men and women who included one-and-a-half to three grams of maca a day in their diet also experienced an increase in libido.
2. Red ginseng
Ginseng is an herb that is commonly used in Chinese medicine. Its use, especially as treatment for sexual dysfunction, has been well-documented since ancient times. Recent studies suggest that ginseng has the ability to enhance male sex performance and sperm production. Red ginseng, in particular, was reported to be the most effective. While fresh ginseng can also be used for the same purpose, red ginseng, which is harvested when the herb is six years old or older, seems to be more potent. It is said to improve erectile dysfunction by increasing the production of nitric oxide, which causes the muscles in the penis to relax and eases blood flow. (Related: Ginseng is Much More Than Simply an Aphrodisiac Herb.)
Despite their many differences, watermelon and ginseng share a common trait: both of them can help with erectile dysfunction. Watermelon contains a phytonutrient called citrulline that functions similarly to the active ingredient in ginseng. Once citrulline is converted into arginine, this amino acid promotes the production of nitric oxide which helps relax the blood vessels so blood can flow easily. This is why watermelon is also known as a “natural Viagra.”
Not only is saffron a powerful antioxidant and mood enhancer, it also helps treat PMS symptoms in women and even fight cancer. When tested on men taking antidepressants, saffron was found to effectively treat erectile dysfunction. Studies also showed that a chemical component of saffron called crocin can improve arousal and lubrication, and alleviate sexual pain in women who are using antidepressants.
5. Olive oil
The ancient Greeks believed that olive oil boosts health and virility, and they were right about that. Olive oil is abundant in antioxidants that are good for the heart and the immune system. It is also rich in monounsaturated fats, which are healthy fats that reduce the risk of heart disease, improve blood circulation, and help with weight loss. These fats are also needed by the body to produce hormones such as testosterone and estrogen, which are important for sex drive.
Oysters are probably the most famous aphrodisiac known to men, but other bivalves such as scallops, mussels, and clams can also improve sex drive. These sea creatures contain amino acids that can increase the production of sex hormones. D-aspartate, which regulates the production of testosterone, has also been found to improve sperm quality. Bivalves are also rich in minerals such as iron, selenium, manganese and zinc, which are all vital for a healthy libido.
Visit FoodScience.news to learn more about foods that can help with sexual dysfunction.