Have you lost your mojo? Can’t seem to build an appetite for sex? Need to find a remedy for a limp libido?
If you are looking at ways to improve your sex drive naturally then you may well already have read about the purported benefits or oysters, asparagus and bananas, for example.
But have you heard about the effects of Maca, Sea Cucumber and Slime Eel? What about Cobra Blood or Ambergris? These powerful yet little known natural aids are, supposedly, nature’s way of kick-starting your sex drive.
In our guide to the Best Natural Aphrodisiacs for Men, we take a look at some of the most unusual and strangest, but all natural, ways to boost your libido and find out whether there is any truth in these traditional cures for carnality.
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A Complete Guide to Natural Aphrodisiacs
For thousands of years, men (and women) have used nature’s own supply of remedies to treat everything from common ailments like fever, pain and infections to complex illnesses.
Though many of us would denigrate the efficacy of herbalist tinctures and potions as old wives tales; there is actually a good deal of scientific evidence to suggest they actually work.
Okay, so vitamin C provides a great boost for the immune system, arnica oil helps with bruising and flax seeds help constipation but is there a natural remedy for a waning sex drive?
The power of the placebo
For those who aren’t familiar with a placebo, the results from taking a medicine can often be influenced by the belief we have in a particular outcome.
When new medicines are tested on the market, groups of volunteers are used to take part in a trial; one group is given the new drug and another group is given a placebo which has no medicinal properties. A control group is usually set up alongside the trial to monitor the effects.
Neither of the two groups taking the drug/placebo are aware of which drug they are taking.
At the end of the trials, the results are measured alongside the control group (the one that had nothing) and often the group taking the placebo report an improvement in their symptoms; sometimes to an extent that is comparable to the results observed in the group taking the ‘medicine’.
The placebo effect is a very powerful one but what has this got to do with your sex drive?
Well, we wanted to start this piece off with a nod to the primary sex organ in the human body and not the one between your legs; the mind. It might seem like a cliché but getting in the right mindset can have a significant, and positive, effect on your sex drive.
The combination of self-belief and trusting in the potency of the remedy you take can all work to boost your sex drive.
Weird and Wonderful Lesser-Known Aphrodisiacs for Men
How many of these natural aphrodisiacs have you tried?
The Maca plant from Peru has been revered by the indigenous people for centuries for its many medicinal properties.
Though cultivated as a vegetable (similar to a radish), it is the root which is said to be a superfood. Scientifically speaking, the root has a high nutritional value and is rich in potassium and calcium as well as a whole range of trace elements and nutrients.
It also contains a potent chemical, p-methoxybenzyl isothiocyanate, which is reputed to have aphrodisiac properties.
Certainly, Incan warriors used a formula of powdered maca root before battle to enhance their strength; however, they were banned from using it after battle in order to protect the womenfolk from their increased virility!
Maca Root is an adaptogen, meaning it boosts the function of your adrenal system (the part that manages your body’s stress response) and lowers cortisol in the body.
Though most evidence relating to the properties of Maca Root as an aphrodisiac are anecdotal, there is plenty of support for this herb being capable of providing a potent boost for your sex drive.
Also known as the ‘Hagfish’, this marine vertebrate (it has a skull but no other bones) is one of nature’s foulest creatures.
Producing a thick and bad smelling mucus when agitated, a single slime eel can turn five gallons of seawater into a jelly mess in next to no time.
However, Koreans have been cooking these odd creatures for hundreds of years and reportedly enjoying their aphrodisiac qualities.
Served with a shot of liquor and broiled in sesame oil as a salted appetiser much like an oyster, the market in the West has grown considerably in the last decade.
There is a lack of scientific evidence to support the claims that the slime fish can boost your libido. It is thought that the combination of the phallic shape of the eel and the fact it produces thick mucus when stroked is the sole basis for the claim.
Irrespective, there are many people (Korean or otherwise) who swear by the results of these little bottom feeders. What have you got to lose?
Derived from an African tree (Pausinystalia Yohimbe), yohimbine was originally intended as a veterinary drug.
Used as an anti-sedative for dogs and deer, yohimbine has been found to have a positive effect on erectile dysfunction with its use widely accepted by Western practitioners.
Used by traditional African herbalists for centuries, this mildly hallucinogenic extract has also been found to produce a positive effect on the libido. Yohimbine works by improving blood flow, increasing production of the organic chemical, norepinephrine (essential for erections) and by stimulating the pelvic nerve ganglia.
Caution is required to ensure the correct dosage of yohimbine as an excess can cause unwelcome side effects such as rapid heart rate, insomnia and overstimulation.
Also known as the Withania somnifera plant, ashwagandha is a common component of the traditional Indian medicine known as Ayurveda.
Most of the plant is used with each element being put to the remedy of different ailments. It is the roots from which ashwagandha is derived and prepared as a supplement to treat impotency by increasing serum testosterone and improving sperm motility and numbers. The treatment is also found to have a positive effect in stimulating libido.
This marine echinoderm is another phallic aphrodisiac with leathery skin, a soft, elongated body and found in abundance in Asia.
Traditional Japanese and Chinese medicine use several species of sea cucumber in their treatments. Even Western science is conducting research into claims that extracts from the animal are effective in treating malaria, colon cancer and internal pain.
However, it is the sea cucumbers effect on the male genitals which has gained it a notorious reputation as being the Viagra of the sea.
The sea cucumber is one of the world’s oldest living creatures and, as a result, has developed an extraordinary immune system and is nutrient rich with niacin, zinc and magnesium; all of which help to produce healthy and plentiful sperm. Not only that but they also increase blood flow and boost sex hormones.
The result is a powerful kick start to the sex drive.
A delicacy in the Philippines, Balut is a fertilised duck egg containing a fully developed embryo.
Though it may seem unpleasant, this highly nutritious snack is packed with protein as well as iron and calcium. There is no scientific studies to support the claims that Balut boosts the sex drive but Filipinos swear by it; it even has its own saying: “balut is a cure to a feeble or shaky knee”.
Maybe this is because it is traditionally served with beer (like a high energy bar snack) that produces the effect of enhancing the libido.
Coming from a flower plant native to the Amazon rainforest and nicknamed the ‘potency wood’ and ‘erection root’, muira puama contains long chain fatty acids, lupeol, coumarin and plant sterols.
In two separate studies conducted by Dr. Jacques Waynberg in Paris, the extract of the root was shown to increase libido, restore stability of an erection during intercourse and improve stamina and physical energy.
The science is reasonably straightforward and can be seen in lab tests where the herb blocks the enzyme acetylcholinesterase. As a result, the corpus cavernosa becomes relaxed allowing it to become more easily engorged.
Not something you will find in many supermarkets, Ambergris is a waxy substance extracted from the digestive system of sperm whales; sort of a middle-ground between whale vomit and whale faeces.
Bizarrely, you may already have some in your cupboard…in the form of perfume. Yes, parfumiers used to use ambergris as a fixative to make your favourite scent last longer.
With a distinctive musky scent, it is the odourless property of ambergris which makes it an aphrodisiac; ambrein.
When used in laboratory tests on mice and rats, males were found to respond to the substance with increased sexual responses (more erections, increased sexual appetite and a greater sense of ‘exploratory’ behaviour).
Females on the other hand responded to ambrein with indifference.
The Eurycoma longifolia plant, native to the rain forests of Malaysia is also known as tongkat ali or Malaysian ginseng.
Used in traditional therapeutic medicine for millennia, the root of tongkat ali is boiled and the infused water used to treat a range of ailments. Though it’s also used to treat dysentery, fever and indigestion, the primary use of Malaysian ginseng has been to boost hormone levels in males as an aphrodisiac.
Unlike some of the treatments on this list there has been some scientific studies shown to support the claim that tongkat ali does actually work.
A study in 2012 found that after 30 days of taking supplements men whose testosterone levels were sub-par were actually boosted to normal ranges.
In separate trials, there was also a marked improvement in the number of men who reported increased erectile function, semen volume and libido.
With US Marines reportedly drinking snake’s blood as part of their training and many countries in the east distilling rice wine with whole serpent, the fate of the poor cobra is not an enviable one.
There is little evidence to suggest this claim is anything but anecdotal at best but many people still believe that the blood of a cobra can boost your sex drive.
Mixed with an alcoholic beverage (presumably to take the foul taste away), it is thought that the more venomous the snake, the more potent the result with some people even mixing the venom in with the concoction.
Though this last addition is more likely to seriously harm you than get your trouser snake active, there is a theory that the cobra’s toxin:
“…has a powerful effect on smooth muscle and vascular endothelium (the things that cause erections) … initially, cobra venom has a very powerful relaxing effect (which could cause the corpus callosum to relax and trap blood in strategic reproductive areas). The initial relaxation/expansion is followed by an opposing, contracting effect.”
—aphrodisiology.com (from PubMed Reference)
Have you found any other natural aphrodisiacs that deserve a mention?
Let’s hear them below!