Following a healthy diet comes with a slew of benefits, so it’s no surprise to hear that the foods you eat also play a role in your sex life. Eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables can benefit your sex life in many ways, from boosting libido (sex drive) to maintaining an erection. But a quick search online brings a mammoth amount of information, which can sometimes make it hard to sort fact from fiction. So, we spoke to Christine DeLozier, author of the newly released book Diet for Great Sex: Food for Male and Female Sexual Health, to find out more.
DeLozier reckons leafy greens “are probably the best thing that we can eat to have better sex”. Why? Leafy greens such as spinach are rich in magnesium, a mineral that may increase the body’s level of the hormone testosterone. And, as we all know, testosterone plays a big part in increasing sex drive. “Men and women both need testosterone for strong libido,” DeLozier confirms.
While onion breath may not be sexy, onions are another great one to add to the mix, as they boost testosterone levels and are high in dietary nitrates, which can help enhance your performance in the bedroom. This is because nitrates improve how your muscles use oxygen.
According to DeLozier, capsicums also boost testosterone levels, while sweet potatoes are beneficial for the vagina and uterus, which is why they are often recommended during pregnancy. Our bodies transform the beta-carotene in sweet potatoes into vitamin A, which helps produce sex hormones.
Almonds and dates are also good sex-friendly foods, DeLozier says, adding that the common household spice saffron is another winner when it comes to spicing things up in the bedroom. She says one of the active ingredients found in saffron, crocin, can increase libido and the frequency of erections. “It was also found to improve arousal and lubrication,” she adds.
For men who have found that it’s more difficult to get or maintain an erection with age, there are certain foods that are worth trying before reaching for that little blue pill.
DeLozier says good blood flow is the key when it comes to longer lasting sex, explaining that, “When men have better blood flow, they have stronger erections.”
However, she says it’s also important to note that women benefit from good blood flow too. “Studies have shown that when women have better blood flow, they have improved clitoral sensitivity, better lubrication, and rate their sexual satisfaction higher.”
The good news is, there are lots of foods that increase blood flow, and potassium-rich foods are one of the best! Sources of potassium include sweet potatoes, leafy greens, mangoes, oranges, bananas and squash. “Try to eat two or more of these every day for more pleasure and stronger erections,” DeLozier advises.
It’s probably a no-brainer but when it comes to things to avoid, sugary foods are at the top of the list. DeLozier says refined sugars can reduce testosterone levels, which can ultimately have a negative effect on performance in the bedroom. High-fat diets can also have the same effect.
If you’re keen on following a more sex-friendly diet, but don’t know where to start, DeLozier recommends whipping up a big leafy green salad with some roasted sweet potatoes and onion. It’s simple, easy and healthy and will benefit your sex life too!