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Supplements That May Benefit Sexual Health And Libido

5 months ago

5318  0
Posted on Feb 20, 2024, 4 p.m.

Low sex drive can have many causes including emotional health, physical health, mental health, and hormonal changes. Sometimes to boost your libido you will only need to make some minor lifestyle changes, but other times you may need to seek professional help. 

If you are looking to explore DIY approaches before seeking professional guidance, there are some steps that you can take to promote sexual health and libido. Simply making sure that you are taking care of your body and health by following a healthful lifestyle can have a huge impact on all areas of health which includes your sex drive. 

Diet, sleep, exercise, and keeping stress under control are part of a healthy lifestyle. But sometimes your diet can fall short, and there is some evidence that supplements may help to fill the gap. Supplementation may help to promote the production of sex hormones which are important to sexual function and reproduction, while they, in general, provide support for the strength and vitality of the entire body. 

When your diet is less than ideal you could be missing out on important nutrients that your body needs, taking a good multivitamin can help to fill in these gaps. With this in mind, getting enough vitamin E has been shown to improve sexual health, and getting enough vitamin C supports both cardiovascular health and blood flow which affect sexual health. Studies suggest that low levels of magnesium are linked to poor sexual function. Zinc has strong antioxidant properties that can help support male sexual health and the immune system as well as act as a hormone balancer. 

Close to half of Americans are not getting enough vitamin D, which can affect overall health as well as sexual health. A study investigating the relationship between testosterone levels and vitamin D found that men with a deficiency taking vitamin D supplements experienced increased testosterone levels and better sexual function. A separate study examining sex hormones in older men found the same correlation. Additionally, a study of post-menopausal women found that those who maintained optimal vitamin D levels experienced less severe menopause symptoms and had better overall sexual function.

There’s also pretty good evidence that ginseng supplements can help to increase sex drive and improve sexual health for men and women. Ginseng may help to promote the production of nitric oxide, which helps with circulation, and in men helps the penis relax. Men with sexual dysfunction taking ginseng were found to have experienced improved sexual health in a systematic review and meta-analysis published in PubMed. A separate review of 9 studies of men with sexual dysfunction had the same findings. Another systematic review of 10 studies also published in PubMed found that red ginseng had a strong positive effect on sexual function and sexual desire in menopausal women. 

A study published in the Journal of Applied Physiology suggests that niacin is associated with improved blood flow in middle-aged and older adults. This study specifically investigated the positive effects of niacin on the endothelium that lines our blood vessels and plays an important role in both blood flow and sexual health.

Maca supplements have also been studied for its ability to improve sex drive and sexual health. Results suggest that daily maca supplements had fertility-enhancing properties for men, as well as promoted increased sex drive and sexual performance. A pilot study found that 14 days of maca supplementation improved sportsmen's cycling times and boosted their sexual desire. 

The adaptogen Ashwagandha has been shown to help promote sexual health. Studies have found that supplementation significantly boosted female function and led to both increased sexual function and functioning in men. 

DHEA (Dehydroepiandrosterone) is one of the abundant circulating steroid hormones in humans, however with age, the levels decrease, and taking DHEA has been shown to help promote improved sexual health and sexual satisfaction, as well as greater mental and physical arousal in women. 

The amino acid L-arginine promotes the production of nitric oxide which may support sexual health, increase blood flow, and help with the dilation of blood cells, while another amino acid called L-citrulline that is produced in the body converts to L-arginine helping to produce nitric oxide to potentially help support healthy sexual function. Small studies suggest that daily supplements of L-citrulline helped to improve sexual health and sexual function in men. 

It is important to point out that while the supplements mentioned in this article are easy to work into your schedule, are widely available, and present few side effects, they work best when taken as part of an overall healthy lifestyle. Other steps that are worth considering include keeping your stress level in check, getting enough sleep, regular exercise, staying hydrated, eating a healthy diet, limiting alcohol, and avoiding smoking. If you are considering some of these supplements, talk to your certified medical professional to make sure that they don’t interact with any medications that you may be taking or pre-existing conditions which is especially important when taking supplements that affect blood vessels. 

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