There are many herbs touted to assist enhancement of sensuality, and further inflame sexual desires, especially during Valentines, a time for celebrating romance. Hmmm. Romance. Are there herbs to enhance the experience of romance? Glad you asked – as a matter of fact, there are a few.

Through the ages, aphrodisiacs have been sought to enhance sexual pleasures, entice others to bend to another’s advances, cure sexual deficiencies, or bring about youthful vitality to the aged. These aphrodisiacs range from being completely worthless, having dangerous side effects, to helping to heal sexual deficiencies, to actually stimulating the genitalia.

This article will focus on some of the safer and beneficial herbs reportedly used successfully to enhance the sexual experience.

Maca is an herbaceous plant native to the Andes of Peru. It is used both as a root vegetable and medicinal herb. The native Peruvians have used maca root for thousands of years for its benefits of improving stamina, enhancing libido, and increasing fertility in both men and women.

The benefits of maca root have been recently discovered and used for chronic fatigue, menopause, depression, stress, in addition to helping fertility. Athletes have found it to be a much safer alternative to steroid use for increasing strength and stamina.

Kava kava root is a safe and effective herb that has been used in the Polynesian island for their entire history. It is not water-soluble and it is taken internally for its effect. The Polynesian natives make a strong drink by pre-chewing the kava kava root and mixing it with coconut milk and fermenting it into a potent beverage for important rituals. Some of the effects of this drink are reported to relax spinal activity, and produce a euphoric state without impairing mental faculties. Some people have reported a tingling in the genitalia, which can produce all the ingredients for a perfect night with a loved one. Kava kava root is very safe to use in small doses on an occasional basis. Over use may cause respiratory and skin problems.

Try this recipe: 1 ounce of kava kava root, 2 tablespoons olive oil, 10 ounces of water. Blend on high for one minute. This is enough for 2-4 people.

One of the best combinations for an aphrodisiac combines kava kava with damiana, another herb made popular for its aphrodisiac effects. Damiana is commonly used in Mexico, where it originates. The two herbs can be combined together for a tea. Since heat destroys the beneficial properties of kava kava, it is best to brew the damiana separately for 10-15 minutes, chill the tea, and then add the kava kava. Only a small amount of kava kava is necessary for a serving; we recommend 1/8 teaspoon to ¼ teaspoon of the powder. The powder does not dissolve, so it is best to drink the mixture immediately. Since herbs are gentle on the body, it may take one to two weeks of drinking a cup a day before noticing effects- depending on metabolism.

Ginseng is another miracle herb. There are two types of ginseng: Panax ginseng from Asia (Korea and China) and Panax quinquefolius from the Americas. The active ingredient is called “ginsenosides”. Panax comes from the Greek word meaning “all-heal”.

In one 1 research study of 90 men with erectile dysfunction (ED), 60% reported improvement to their symptoms compared to 30% on a placebo. This is not strictly an aphrodisiac but it will help men with ED to have more enjoyable intimacy. It has been shown effective with long term use only. It will not fix ED overnight; ginseng needs to be taken daily for several months.

A perennial favorite is Horny Goat Weed, or Epimedium. It is a time-tested aphrodisiac that increases the libido in men and women and improves erectile dysfunction in men. The Chinese have used this herb for more than two millennium to help with sexual dysfunction in men and women. It is reported to be the best herbal sexual tonic for both men and women. It is reported to rebuild youthful sexual vitality and fire, help fatigue, and alleviate menopausal discomfort, while boosting libido. The main active ingredient is called icariin. Dosages of the herb should be standardized on the icarrin levels at around 10-20%. Suggested dosage is 400-500mg a day for those who need a boost in their love life. According to Chinese medical doctors, Horny Goat Weed has been being used in China for more than 2000 years- because it works.

Those were just a few of the safer but popular aphrodisiacs used past and present. Experiment around to find what is best for you and your loved one. And remember, fun is an equal part of the equation!

For more information on herbal remedies please go to www.herbalvista.com

1. Choi HK et al. Clinical effacacy of Korean red ginseng for erectile dysfunction. International Journal of Impotence Research. 7.3 (1995):181-6

Author's Bio: 

Aurelia & Kennon Ward are both founders of a new Company called Herbal Vista LLC, which focuses on selling healthy sustainable products. They are currently developing their own line of all natural herbal skincare that soothes both the skin and achy muscles. The products are planned to be ready for distribution later this year. Kennon is both a Reiki Master and herbalist, specializing in preparing specialty healing teas (coming soon on www.herbalvista.com). Aurelia was trained in research and development, and studies aromatherapy. For more information, visit www.herbalvista.com, or e-mail Aurelia at: award@herbalvista.com