The Food of Love – An A to Z of Aphrodisiacs
Aphrodisiacs are anything that is consumed that increases sexual desire. Named for Aphrodite, the Greek Goddess of love, they constitute a wide range of drugs, medicines and food. With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, we have done the homework for you and put together our A-Z of foods that will get you in the mood. We aren’t scientists though so we won’t be accepting any complaints!
Artichokes are packed with vitamins and antioxidants, which are important for proper body function and blood flow. The symbolic peeling of the layers should get you in the mood!
Asparagus is another great source of vitamin E which helps production of testosterone, oestrogen and progesterone, which stimulate sexual responses. It is also full of potassium, fibre, vitamin B6, vitamins A and C, thiamine and folic acid.
Avocado is rich with vitamin B6, vitamin e, potassium and folic acid. This boosts histamine production which is necessary for orgasms. A great reason to eat more guacamole!
Bananas. It might look obvious why they are included but bananas have potassium which is key for muscle strength, magnesium and B vitamins for energy and bromelain, an enzyme which triggers testosterone production.
Basil has a pungent aroma that is said to have an aphrodisiac effect but it is also very stimulating when eaten. That’s probably why the Italians use so much of it!
Cherries are packed with feel-good vitamins (A, C, and E), potassium, magnesium, folate, iron, and more. They also have melatonin, an antioxidant to help regulate your heart and maintain that all important blood flow.
Chocolate has long been linked to romance and it’s not hard to see why. The cocoa in it contains anandamide, a psychoactive feel-good chemical, and phenyl ethylamine which releases dopamine. It also produces serotonin and endorphins to make you happy.
Coffee is the king of caffeine and we know that puts a pep in your step. The stimulant increases heart rate and circulation and keeps you awake for longer. Which is a good thing.
Durian is a Chinese fruit that promotes the production of oestrogen and increases fertility.
Flaxseeds are a tasty little addition in breads and salads but you might be surprised to learn they contain omega-3 fatty acids which stimulate sex-hormone production.
Garlic gets a bad rep and is probably blamed for a lack of amorous activity but it is actually really good for your circulation and blood flow because of the allicin and arginine in it. Another ingredient loved by Italians!
Ginger heats up dishes and drinks and will heat things up in the bedroom too. It helps circulation and increases your heart rate.
Honey is another surprising aphrodisiac. It is a great source of boron which helps regulate oestrogen and testosterone levels and provides a natural energy boost.
Olive Oil is a good source of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which are good for a healthy heart and hormone production. No wonder it is the cornerstone of the Mediterranean diet!
Pine Nuts are high in zinc too so they have the power to improve your sex drive. Get amorous and eat with your fingers by making a punchy pesto and dipping breadsticks in it.
Pumpkin seeds have lots of magnesium which helps raise testosterone levels and omega-3 fatty acids which help increase sex hormone production.
Rocket protects your libido because it is full of minerals and antioxidants that block negative contaminates from damaging your system.
Strawberries are really seductive, especially when smothered in chocolate. Their health benefits improve your general well being and give you an energy boost.
Walnuts have the same omega-3 fatty acids as seeds and salmon so chop some up in a salad or a walnut cake for extra sex-hormone production.
Watermelon is another food that increases blood flow. It has a phytonutrient called citrulline that produces nitric oxide which relaxes the blood vessels. It’s basically the Viagra of the fruit aisle.
Happy Valentine’s Day!
Alison has been writing since she could hold a pen, which came in handy for her degree in English, Media and Cultural Studies. She has been working in media since graduating and is the latest features writer for TheTaste.
Writing for TheTaste allows her to combine her passion for the written word with her love of food and drink. Find her on Twitter @AliDalyo