Romance is in the air, flower shops are working overtime and restaurant reservations are getting harder and harder to come by. All of this can only mean one thing: Valentine’s Day is around the corner.
As Cupids everywhere plan romantic gestures for their special someone, there are certain foods that are rumored to assist in sparking romance. While the Food and Drug Administration maintains that there is no scientific evidence that supports some aphrodisiacs, the following foods continue to be linked with an enhanced the romantic experience.
Oysters are commonly rumored to be an aphrodisiac due to their high zinc content, which helps produce testosterone. Oysters increase dopamine levels and also contain amino acids and serotonin, all of which have been linked to a heightened response to pleasure.
Nothing is more romantic than a surprise home-cooked dinner. Try grilling oysters to make your own homemade chargrilled oysters to reduce the amount of butter used, or use coconut or olive oil instead. Steamed oysters in a white wine sauce is a lighter option and just as delicious.
While chocolate is one of the foods most commonly linked to Valentine’s Day and romance, there isn’t much evidence to back the sweet treat’s claim to improving your sex drive. So while it’s always a good idea to surprise your Valentine with a chocolatey gift, don’t expect it to provide them with anything more than a sugar rush.
When purchasing or preparing a chocolate gift, consider using dark chocolate with at least 70 percent cocoa for increased antioxidants and decreased sugar content.
Maca is a root vegetable that has been linked to various uses, including increased libido, for generations. Scientific research has been mixed regarding Maca’s impact on a person’s sex drive, but it has been linked with improved fertility, sexual arousal and treating hot flashes.
Most often found in a powdered form, maca can be added to smoothies, teas or even with hot chocolate to finish off your romantic evening.
Saffron is a spice derived from the Crocus sativus flower. It is native to Southwest Asia and is one of the most expensive spices by weight.
What's more, saffron is also popular for its potential aphrodisiac properties, especially in individuals taking antidepressants. One study in women reported that those in who consumed saffron experienced higher levels of arousal compared to those who did not.
Fenugreek seeds are mostly used in South Asian dishes, but are also utilized in Ayurvedic medicine as an anti-inflammatory, libido-boosting treatment.
A small study investigated the effects of a daily dose of 600 mg of fenugreek extract in women who had reported having a low sex drive. It observed a significant increase in sexual desire and arousal in the fenugreek group by the end of the eight-week study, compared to the placebo group.
While it’s always fun to think of ways to increase romance, especially around Valentine’s Day, it shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone that eating a healthy and balanced diet is the best way to feel good about yourself, stay healthy and increase your sex drive.
Note: Consult your physician before taking any new supplements or drastically changing your diet.
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