In order to achieve a healthy sexual lifestyle, healthy organs and a balanced endocrine system that produces the necessary hormones is critical.
Low pituitary and thyroid function, weak adrenals, low testicular function in men, and low estrogens in women lead to lack of desire, decreased development of sexual organs, and a decrease in sex drive.
Here are three natural steps you can take to maintain a healthy body while optimizing an enjoyable sex life.
#1 Improve your diet
Any diet that contains fresh, high-vitality foods while maintaining your normal weight, a healthy cardiovascular system, and full-functioning organs will lead to better sexual function.
A diet too rich in proteins may interfere with your sexual functioning, as well as a cholesterol-free diet. In fact, cholesterol is a precursor to several sexual hormones. For this reason, a proper intake of fatty acids is important for a healthy sexual function.
Many foods that improve the sexual function come from the ocean. This is probably due to the high amount of zinc they contain, which is essential for sex. In fact, zinc not only increases testosterone levels, but also improves the potency and frequency of sexual intercourse in both men and women by supporting male prostate function and adrenal glands. Also, when women have high levels of zinc (which is essential for the production of natural vaginal lubrication) in their bodies they find it easier to prepare for sex.
In men, zinc controls testosterone, which is responsible for producing sperm. It is important that men load up on zinc after sex, as their zinc level reduces during intercourse.
The top food sources of zinc are oysters and crabs, especially when cooked in moist heat. Pumpkin seeds are high in zinc, too.
To support sexual vitality and fertility, extra vitamin E, vitamin C and B are helpful, so the supplementation with a general multivitamin, multi-mineral (zinc, magnesium, selenium, manganese, molybdenum) and antioxidant formula is highly recommended.
Vitamin E, also called the “sex vitamin”, aids in the production of sex hormones, which increase attraction, desire, and mood. It also delays the aging process and prevents disease, which of course indirectly boosts the longevity of anyone’s sexual lifestyle, improves sperm quality motility and sperm count, protects sperm from free radical damage, and raises the testosterone level, which boosts the libido. Vitamin E also improves blood circulation.
Top food sources of vitamin E are wheat germ oil, sunflower seeds, dried almonds, dandelion greens, and spinach. Peppers, asparagus, squash, blackberries, kiwi, broccoli, and avocado are good sources, too.
Vitamin C works in tandem with vitamin E to enhance the sex drive. In fact, vitamin E needs vitamin C to achieve some of its circulatory benefits in the arteries. It also improves sperm quality and helps produce the thyroid hormone.
Top food sources of vitamin C are red and yellow bell peppers, kale, parsley, kiwi, strawberries, papaya, broccoli, oranges, Brussels sprouts, and grapefruit.
The majority of the various B vitamins can help increase sexual desire, so a supplementation with a B50 complex is very helpful.
Vitamins B3, B6, B12 and folic acid are major factors in increasing libido.
Top food sources of these B vitamins are tuna, turkey, chicken, clams, oysters, mussels, crab, sardines, herring, cod, mushrooms, salmon, kidney beans, broccoli, peppers, baked potatoes with skin, cauliflower, pistachio nuts, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, dandelion greens, zucchini, squash, peas, asparagus, spinach, turnip greens, kale, squash, parsley, seaweeds, lentils, artichokes, and lettuce.
There is also good evidence that the essential amino acid arginine works by increasing the flow of blood to the sexual organs in both men and women, which improves sexual functioning. So be sure you are getting enough quality protein in your diet.
Top food sources of arginine are walnuts, almonds, cashews, sunflower seeds, flaxseeds, pumpkin seeds, chocolate, lentils, soybeans, chickpeas, the alga spirulina, turkey, chicken, shrimp, tuna, cod, spinach, cheese, and yogurt.
Supplements of L-arginine are also available in capsule or cream forms.
#2 Support your body with herbs
With the proper diet and food supplementation, herbs are strongly recommended. Here is a list of herbs known for their aphrodisiac properties, antioxidant properties, blood circulation improvement (directly related to sexual functioning), and hormone balancing effect for both men and women.
- Damiana, spicy and hot, boiled for 15-20 minutes has an aphrodisiac effect and is commonly used in Mexico in alcoholic drinks. It has a stimulant effect to the inguinal nerve, which brings more blood to the erogenous zone.
- Ginko Biloba is a strong antioxidant and beneficial to sexual functioning when related to circulation (i.e. impotence due to impaired blood flow). Traditionally it is a kidney tonic and rejuvenating herb.
- Miura Puama is known as “potency wood” to indigenous cultures of Brazil. It has been shown to stimulate libido, boost physical performance, and promote a healthy stress response. It is considered a tonic for the central nervous system as well as an aphrodisiac.
- Panax Ginseng is an energy tonic for both men and women, and has a warming effect on the body, while also acting as an antioxidant and adrenals regulator. As a sexual stimulant, it strengthens male reproductive health and has an estrogen-like effect on women.
- Schizandra is an oriental, full body, energy tonic that has a warming effect on the body. It also acts as an aphrodisiac, a good antioxidant, and is effective for fatigue and low stamina. Not enough? Schizandra even increases staying power in men and is a kidney tonic that improves general weakness, depression, and sexual debility in both men and women.
#3 Reduce stress and improve your lifestyle
Adopting the following lifestyle changes is a natural way to help you improve your sexual life.
Exercise is a great way to manage stress. Stress increases levels of a hormone called cortisol, which suppresses your body’s ability to make and utilize testosterone, negatively affecting sexual performance and desire.
Exercise daily to help keep your testosterone levels up, to improve blood circulation, and to control your weight. Excess body fat can upset your hormonal balance.
But be careful because over-exercising can decrease testosterone levels, leading to a less robust sexual appetite in both men and women. In addition, over-training can compromise the immune system, which could also adversely affect sexual performance.
2) Lower alcohol intake
Heavy drinking also inhibits sexual performance. Alcohol has a negative effect on your testosterone production and, in both sexes, sexual response is reduced by regular and prolonged drinking. Many people mistakenly believe that alcohol is an aphrodisiac. In reality, especially in men, alcohol can cause difficulties achieving and maintaining erection while women may experience reduced lubrication, find more difficulty in reaching orgasm, or else experience less intense orgasms. Alcohol lowers testosterone while increasing estrogen levels and can also lead to weight gain. Heavy drinking can also atrophy the testicles, lower sperm count, and cause erectile dysfunction. In addition, alcohol disturbs sleep while increasing stress.
3) Get a good night’s sleep
Sleeping less than seven to eight hours decreases testosterone levels.
Proper sexual functioning (not considering psychological issues) results from the combination of factors that keep the body young, active, and vital. Improper functioning is your body’s alarm. Listen to your body. Give your body what it needs to function at its peak performance.
Our bodies change over the years. They develop different needs that should be addressed before deficiencies become chronic. Any deficiency and lack of balance can be avoided with a proper lifestyle, the right food, and when necessary, herbs and food supplements.
Your body has different needs at every stage in your life. The responsibility is yours to make your body function as best as it can for as long as possible. If you lack confidence in your own capability, seek an expert who can help you understand and address the challenges of this specific period of your life. An experienced Holistic Health Practitioner is a good place to start.