Low Libido and Nutrition: 10 Health Hacks For A Better Sex Drive
If you’re GreenSmoothieGirl, many people know you’re single, some people know you’re a former sex therapist, and everybody knows you know a lot about nutrition…..my point is, people tell me stuff.
Turns out, lots of women, and some men, too, are suffering with sexual dysfunction, or just a lack of interest in sex, period.
Why is Your Libido Gone?
Historically, at least when Masters and Johnson were doing their landmark work on North Americans and sexual practices and attitudes, women hit their “sexual prime” at 40, but these days, researchers see less of that.
More and more, some women don’t even HAVE a sexual prime. They’re perennially exhausted, and with reserves running low, sex is the first thing to go.
Moms of young children are very often less interested in sex than their partners. Husbands are frustrated and wonder what happened to the energetic woman they married. (Have a little patience, guys. It very well may be temporary. Kind of a LONG temporary, I know, but still—it’s a season.)
Another growing phenomenon is low testosterone in men—so many men have less interest in sex now than they did 50 years ago. Research has shown that high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, and obesity lower testosterone¹, and (surprise!) all of those conditions are on the rise.
Depression and anxiety are also on the rise, and while these conditions are libido-killers in themselves, the medications used to treat them have the common side effect of causing sexual dysfunction.
The endocrine system, which modulates your hormones (and therefore, your sex drive) is easily disrupted. Besides medications, endocrine disruptors in the environment, home products, and even our food supply, are known to cause a wide range of reproductive problems, including low libido.²
How To Get Your Sex Drive Back: Ten Nutrition Tips
I have a few tips for those suffering from lack of libido–or maybe it’s your partner whose sex drive doesn’t match yours. I’m going to start with the DON’Ts, and move on to the DOs:
1. Ditch endocrine-disrupting plastics. Don’t drink out of plastic containers or microwave stuff in plastic (or heaven forbid, Styrofoam).
2. Don’t drink tap water–avoid fluoride and chlorine. Get a carbon filter on the whole water system in your home. Get a reverse osmosis filtration system, at a minimum. Best of all is if you have R.O. water, and a water ionizer.
3. Don’t eat soy! Most soy in the U.S. is genetically modified, but worse, processed soy products mimic estrogen in the body and disrupts normal hormone function. Don’t use soy milk or any other processed soy products—occasionally, small amounts of organic miso, edamame, tofu, nama shoyu or Bragg’s, are okay.
And read your labels! There is soy protein isolate and soy lecithin and a dozen other processed soy fractions in everything boxed, everything canned, everything manufactured by humans these days, including almost all BREAD products. It all adds up, so cut it OUT of your diet.
4. Quit using chemical personal care products. Putting it on your skin is the same as eating it. Your skin is a living, breathing organ, and it takes what you put on it into the bloodstream. Grab a copy of my free wallet card, Cosmetic Ingredients to Avoid, and use it while shopping to avoid harmful ingredients. Make a shift to the things you put on your skin being only natural. My moisturizer is organic coconut oil.
What to Eat For a Better Sex Life
Now for the DO’s:
5. Eat more whole-food plants: A quart of green smoothie is one of the easiest ways to get 7-10 servings of fruits and vegetables every day.
One of my biggest surprises in writing The Green Smoothies Diet was discovering that many people who drink green smoothies regularly, in my study of 175 people, experience higher libido.
(The sex-drive statistic, to me at least, relates to both energy and interest in a very intense, personal connection with other people. You might say it’s just making your hormones balanced and healthier, and that’s a good point, too–I believe a high libido is a natural state.)
And when plants are what you eat most of, weight loss is nearly inevitable.
Even being 10 pounds over your normal weight can very noticeably affect libido. You may think depressed libido is because you don’t feel sexy or uninhibited when you’ve got love handles or thigh flab. That’s only part of it.
(An important part! Feeling sexy and energetic DOES lead to you being your best self—in all ways. On the flip side, having to turn the lights off, avoid certain body parts being visible, or worrying about insecurities, leads to nothing good in the bedroom.)
The other part is how even just an extra 10 lbs. truly depresses circulation and endocrine functions. You really need those functions, for good lovin.’
When your energy is depleted, as it always will be on the Standard American Diet diet, you lose the sexual interest and stamina you once had. Sexual dysfunction happens the same way all degenerative disease does: it is linked to lifestyle choices. Your reproductive system, after all, is affected by the same things your cardiac, circulatory, and endocrine systems are–they are all inextricably linked, as they are all part of one complex organism.
6. Add three things to your green smoothie. Call the recipe Good Green Love. Or Sexy Smoothie 2.0. Half for you, half for your partner. Here they are:
a. Maca. It’s the “Peruvian ginseng,” a root vegetable prized by the Incans for thousands of years for its ability to improve athletic endurance and sexual stamina.
b. Bee pollen. Look what it does for the queen bee! It’s a powerful aphrodisiac. Try one grain to make sure you’re not allergic, then two grains the next day. Put a spoonful of it in your smoothie when you’ve ascertained you don’t have a sensitivity to it. It also has a potentially helpful effect on seasonal allergies, and immune function!
c. Celery. Yes, the vegetable I affectionately like to say comes from the cardboard family.
Put it in your smoothie where you won’t notice it, since it contains androsterone, a precursor to pheromones that positively affect the sexual behavior of your partner.
More Tips to Increase Your Libido
8: Check your medicine cabinet: Many over-the-counter and prescription drugs suppress libido or cause other sexual dysfunction. Common culprits are:
- Birth control pills or patches
- Hair-loss treatments
- Beta blockers
- Medical marijuana
Try switching to something that doesn’t have effects on your libido. Better yet, address the root cause of the condition so you can eventually ditch the meds.
9. Figure out what your time of day is, and take advantage of that. Some people are simply more interested in sex in the morning, rather than at night. It’s a truism that many folks are either “night people” or “morning people.” Nothing wrong with that–you might have to compromise if your partner is the opposite.
10. Consider visiting a bioidentical hormone specialist. Women, get a full blood-panel workup to find out if progesterone or female testosterone is the root of the problem. A little yam-based progesterone or hormone cream may work wonders. (However, you want this only if it’s warranted by your test results!) Testosterone cream is appropriate only if you are 40 or older.
Please get these ONLY from a bioidentical practitioner. The drugs, from the other guys? The substances are not identical to what your body makes. They are harmful and may have some symptom-abatement results in the short term, but they are also associated with negative side effects and disease risk.
Other remedies your natural-care practitioner may recommend, like DHEA, or flax oil, could be easily located at a health-food store.
So try those ideas, and HAVE FUN! (And I mean that in the wildest, most passionate way possible.)