Aphrodisiacs: Food to Get You In The Mood
Two things dominate the mind, so it’s no wonder they go hand in hand.
Food and sex are closely linked, and although ‘you are what is you eat’ is a tired saying, what you eat directly influences you body. The foods you consume can have a direct impact on your sex life, affecting your hormones, brain chemistry, energy and stress levels. Some foods have psychoactive properties, others arouse because they are psychologically suggestive, some can actually increase blood flow. Men and women continuously turn to natural supplements for better sex, and these foods claim to ‘arouse,’ ‘increase sexual desire,’ or ‘improve sexual performance.’
Below we’ve listed foods that’ll give you a boost, and what you do with that is entirely up to you.
Oysters are notorious for being an aphrodisiac. Though it sounds clichéd, they do spark the fire. High in zinc and with a reputation for being great for love and fertility, researchers have found that oysters contain amino acids that trigger the production of sex hormones. It’s said that spring is the time of the year the shellfish have their greatest aphrodisiac quality.
With an exotic reputation, a spicy hit and and the colour of love, it’s clear why this food is considered an aphrodisiac – but there is also the science to prove it. According to Dr. Meryl S. Rosofsky, chilli peppers stimulate endorphins and make you feel good, they also speed up your heart rate and make you sweat, mimicking all the sensations you feel when you’re aroused.
This sensuous shaped fruit has held it’s reputation for being an aphrodisiac as far back as the Aztecs. They would call the avocado ahuacuatl meaning ‘testicle tree’ . While the jury is still out on just how lustful avocados are, the scientific reason why avocados make sense as an aphrodisiac is that they are rich in Vitamin E, helping to maintain youthful vigour and energy levels which could help keep the spark alive. Vitamin E also helps your body churn testosterone, estrogen and progesterone, all stimulating sexual responses. They are also high in unsaturated fats and low in saturated fat, Vitamin B6 and potassium, making them good for your heart and arteries.
Any foods that keep the heart beating strong will keep blood flowing to all the right places; men with underlying heart disease are twice as likely to suffer from erectile dysfunction.
Sensual from its taste to its aroma, chocolate has always been considered romantic. Chocolate contains phenylethylamine which stimulates the nervous system and triggers the release of pleasurable endorphins, all linked to in enhancing sex drive. Phenylethylamine has also been shown to cause a spike in dopamine, a neaurochemical directly associated with sexual arousal and inducing feelings of pleasure.
With its phallic shape, bananas already look like a feel-good food. They’re also packed with Vitamin B and potassium, both of which are said to be important for sex hormone production and elevate energy levels. Bananas also contain bromelaid, an enzyme which triggers testosterone production and is said to enhance the male libido.
Honey contains Vitamin B which stimulates testosterone production which can trigger arousal. It also helps to regulate hormone levels, providing a natural energy boost. In fact, the word ‘honeymoon’ got its name from mead, an alcoholic drink made from honey that was given to newlyweds. However scientists have cautioned against Mad Honey, a product produced in Turkey that’s advertised as a sexual stimulant. It is believed people who use the product risk heart problems as it contains a substance called grayanotoxin, a substance which also happens to increase vaginal stimulation.
Watermelon contains phytonutrient citrulline which leads to an increase in the amount of nitric oxide in your body. This increase causes blood vessels to relax and speed up circulation. It’s said that because of this, watermelon can have a Viagra-like effect on the body.
Heralded as an arousal aid, this peppery plant has been documented as an aphrodisiac since the first century A.D. Research reveals the minerals and antioxidants found in dark leafy greens are essential for our sexual health, have also been proven to block environmental contaminates that are thought to negatively harm libido.
Packed with antioxidants, olives and their oil have been used for centuries for health. The Greeks believed they made men more virile as well. Olive oil is a good source of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which are critical for a healthy heart, blood flow and hormone production.
The colour red is known to help spark the fire. A 2008 study found that men found women sexier if they wore read, as opposed to cooler tones such as blue or green. Strawberries are packed with Vitamin C to keep you stimulated and help blood flow to all regions of the body. They’re also an excellent source of folic acid, a B Vitamin that helps ward off birth defects in women and are said to be tied to high sperm counts in men.
These bright gems enclosed in a thick rose husk are filled with antioxidants which protect the lining of the blood vessels. This allows more blood to course through them which supports blood flow. One study found that pomegranate juice had a positive effect on erectile dysfunction.
Pumpkin seeds are high in magnesium. This helps with raising testosterone levels by making sure more enters the blood stream, but can also help lower anxiety and aid in the production of some sex hormones. High in Vitamin E, it can also boost your energy levels.
Almonds have long been puported to increase passion, act as a sexual stimulant and aid with fertility. They are nutrient-dense and rich in several trace minerals that are importance for sexual health and reproduction such as zinc, selenum and Vitamin E.