Sexual dysfunction affects as many as four in 10 women and three in 10 men in the US. Such maladies include low libido, which, in turn, can either be a desire or an arousal disorder. Orgasm and pain disorders are also forms of sexual dysfunction.
Age is one of the most common culprits behind low libido or an impaired sex drive. For starters, male testosterone levels drop about 0.8% to 2% every year. Women already have much lower T levels, and age can further reduce it.
Fortunately, some supplements can help increase libido. Pair these up with increased physical activity and less stress, and you may be able to restore your T levels.
So, ready to learn all about how to increase libido with supplementation? Then let's get right into it!
1. Nitric Oxide Supplements
Low testosterone can cause erectile dysfunction (ED) and impaired sex drive in men. Meaning, a man with ED can also have low libido levels. Having low libido, in turn, can further aggravate symptoms of ED.
Having ED can also result in a lack of desire to have intercourse, which can mirror the effects of low libido. Either way, these issues can go hand in hand and restrict you from having an enjoyable sex life.
If you have ED, nitric oxide (NO) supplements may help alleviate your symptoms. NO is a molecule that the body produces naturally, but some people don't generate enough. Aging, for instance, can reduce NO supplies by 50% to 75%.
The thing is, NO is vital for erections, as it acts as a vasodilator.
This means that nitric oxide relaxes the inner muscles of the penile blood vessels. This then triggers an increase in the blood flowing into the penis.
The more blood, the higher the chances of a successful erection. Having an erection can then help stimulate your sexual desire. As a result, your sex drive may increase, and you may find it pleasurable to have intercourse.
2. Iron Supplements
In the US, an estimated 7.8 million women are deficient in iron. Unfortunately, iron deficiencies can result in impaired sexual functions, too.
For starters, iron deficiency can result in anemia, which is a lack of healthy red blood cells. Iron deficiency anemia, in turn, can cause a myriad of symptoms like anxiety and fatigue. It can also lead to restlessness, weakness, and overall reduced strength.
All these can then “put off” women from having sex, which can ultimately take a toll on their libido.
If you experience any of the symptoms mentioned above, it's best to see your doctor soon. Your physician would likely need you to undergo blood tests to see if you have an iron deficiency. If it turns out that you do, your healthcare provider may agree to you taking iron supplements.
Bromantane is an “actoprotector.” Actoprotectors are chemicals that stabilize the body under extreme physical loads.
Some of the earliest users of bromantane were the Soviet and Russian armies in the late 1980s. They used it as a means to reduce recovery times after vigorous physical exertion. Because of this, their endurance also improved, so they lasted longer on the field.
From here, the use of bromantane has expanded to nootropics, or “cognitive enhancers.” It has purported mood-lifting properties that may encourage improved libido. What's more, scientists say that it appears to have no addictive potential.
However, it's important to note that researchers are still looking into its effects. They do say that it has positive psychological and physiological effects. Still, it's best that you read more about bromantane before giving it a try.
4. Supplements With Aphrodisiac Ingredients
Aphrodisiacs are food or medications said to trigger sexual instinct and boost libido. Many dietary supplements also contain food- or plant-based aphrodisiac ingredients. Some of these include saffron, maca, and Ginkgo Biloba.
Do note that some studies say these ingredients work, while others found them not to have any effects at all.
Saffron as a Libido Booster
Researchers found that saffron had a significant improving effect on libido. They also say that it helped ED patients have better erectile functions.
All in all, the study's participants reported having more satisfying sex lives. However, one drawback to saffron is that it doesn't seem to improve semen quality.
Saffron may also help with female libido, especially in those who take antidepressants. That's because antidepressant drugs can dampen sexual drive and desire in women. However, a study found that saffron can help stir arousal and desire in these female patients.
The downside is that saffron may not work as great in women who don’t take antidepressants.
Maca as the “Peruvian Viagra”
Maca is a root crop related to cruciferous veggies like cabbage, cauliflower, and kale. As a vegetable, it brings health benefits, as it contains antioxidants and flavonoids. However, this sweet root veggie also goes by the name “Peruvian Viagra.”
That nickname comes from its purported erectile function- and libido-improving effects. Some studies do suggest that these claims hold some truth to them.
Ginkgo Biloba as a Vasodilator
Ginkgo biloba is another herbal supplement that seems to work as a vasodilator. In this way, it may promote nitric oxide production, which can boost blood flow.
Traditional Chinese medicine used this plant to treat sexual dysfunction and even depression. Its long history stems from the fact that the Ginkgo biloba tree is one of the oldest tree species out there.
Increase Libido Levels With the Help of these Supplements
There you have it, four of the supplements that may help increase libido. More than that, they may also improve other aspects of your mental and physical health. Since scientific studies back them up, they may be worth trying out.
However, make sure that you consult your doctor before you give them a shot. This is especially important if you're already on prescription medications. Your doctor can help you avoid supplements that may interact with your meds.
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