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Health

The Link Between Your Diet and the Sex You're Having

By Maya Khamala

Most of us understand that eating well leads to feeling well. Healthy food, healthy body, right? But for all the focus we spend on eating optimally, we tend to give little if any thought to how our food choices affect our sexual health, sexual desire, and sexual enjoyment overall. 

But since sexual health can’t simply be divorced from physical health, it’s hardly surprising that some foods can make you a veritable goddess in the sack, while other foods can leave you feeling like a dud. 

If you’re looking to crank up the heat in your boudoir, diet can certainly play a role, as can an active lifestyle, and tending to your mental health needs (nothing exists in a vacuum, after all). 

But today we’re here to improve your sex life by harnessing the power of food. Consider the following tips when eating for arousal.

Eat to keep your hormones happy

Keeping our hormones balanced can help lead to a steadier—and more satisfying—sex life. When our hormones are imbalanced, it can impact our mood, and may even dull sexual desire. Hormones are supposed to work together in harmony, so when one gets out of balance, others are usually affected. For instance, when our stress hormones spike, it can affect our thyroid gland, our digestive system, and our sex hormones, to name a few. This, friends, applies to lovers of all genders.

The good news: changes to your diet and lifestyle can help provide hormonal support.

- Avocados are packed with vitamin E, and can help improve the production of estrogen, progesteron, and testosterone alike. 

- Switching to organic foods can help reduce the amount of pesticides you’re exposed to, which can have negative impacts on sexual health and the reproductive system.

- A daily dose of cruciferous vegetables like boy choy, broccoli, or kale is integral to hormone detoxification and overall balance.

- Eating good fats like olive and flaxseed oil, and raw nuts or seeds build hormones while also reducing inflammation throughout the body.

- Eating a quality protein at every meal keeps you fuller longer and balances your blood sugar. Quality proteins include eggs, yogurt, meat, poultry, and fish. Always go with hormone-free meat by choosing organic grass-fed options.

Eat to stay horny…or restore horniness

Foods rumored to boost libido have held a certain appeal throughout history. While there is some debate over how well they work, many foods with a reputation for being natural aphrodisiacs come with their own set of benefits.

- Oysters are probably the most world-famous aphrodisiac out there. This might be because they’re high in vitamin B12 and zinc, a mineral our bodies need for vital, everyday functions. Zinc also helps to increase stamina, regulate testosterone levels, and improve sperm quality.

- In addition to being a good source of magnesium and iron, basil provides manganese, vitamin C and folate, all nutrients linked with sexual health and fertility. This delicious cleansing herb can promote better cardiovascular health, improve blood flow, and increase your desire and ability to perform sexually.

- Dark chocolate is so much more than just dessert. An excellent source of serotonin and phenylethylamine (AKA love hormones) as well as caffeine, dark chocolate acts as a stimulant which improves blood flow and reinvigorates libido.

- Garlic contains allicin, a compound known to increase blood flow to the sexual organs, hence its reputation as a very powerful aphrodisiac. But you need to take capsules or eat garlic daily for about a month to reap such benefits. If you’re eating raw garlic, though, just make sure your lover does too, so you can share in the flavor together, ‘nam sayin’?

Eat to boost your stamina

Stamina can mean many things, but when it comes to sex, it often refers to how long you can last in bed. If you’re unsatisfied with how quickly you (or your partner) does the deed, there are a number of foods you can try to boost stamina and improve overall sexual performance.

Capsaicin is found in most hot peppers, as well as ginger root. It helps to boost endurance, as well as speed up recovery, you know, so you’re ready to go again in no time.

As one of the body’s most integral electrolytes, potassium keeps your muscles and cells hydrated and boosts your metabolism — all of which are important if you want to keep up your stamina. Go for bananas, cantaloupe, potato, tomatoes, and carrot—to name just a few.

While the simple carbs found in pasta and bread can really kill your stamina (food coma, anyone?) complex carbs do the opposite, fortifying your sexy body with a lasting dose of energy. Think oatmeal, sweet potatoes, brown rice, quinoa, barley, bulgur, and dried beans.

Bonus tip: slow down on the booze

While drinking alcohol can absolutely lower your inhibitions and maybe even increase the likelihood that you’ll get it on, it can also cause erectile dysfunction (those who have partners with penises, take heed). Not to mention, alcohol dehydrates your body, and your vagina is sadly not exempt. This means less lubrication. Alcohol is also a central nervous system depressant, so can also render your nerve endings less sensitive to the touch. Moral of the story: when trying to improve your sex life, try not to rely on alcohol. 

Bottom line: paying attention to your health can go a long way toward countering the ill effects of the world as we know it. Always remember that good food leads to good health and great sex, which in turn leads to more good health…and more great sex. It’s a positive feedback loop, so have a second helping already! <3

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