by Dr. Ro, The Nutrition Coach NNPA Columnist
Valentine’s Day has passed; but if you want to keep the romantic fires burning, don’t fret. In the words of Olivia Pope, “it’s handled!” As your nutrition coach, I’m here to the rescue you with tips that will pay off big – for you and your sweetie. So here’s my advice if you really want to put the sexy back in your love life. Whether it’s for Black Love Day or every day, it is going to take food and a few good moves to do it. So here are a few of my favorite picks for aphrodisiac foods and moves that are supported by science. Let’s get started with the food first.
Strawberries are rich in antioxidants like vitamin C, which is good for the heart because the Vitamin C increases circulation, making the arteries more supple, and in the boudoir, that circulation is key. The heart’s job is to pump blood to all body parts, including female and male genitalia… all the right places to help you get that lovin’ feeling! For an extra lovin’ punch, dip your berries in dark chocolate, also rich in antioxidants called methylxanthines, known to increase libido. Can you say “twofer?”
Oysters. Okay, you may have heard that these mollusks are a potent aphrodisiac and are winners when it comes to increasing libido, and here’s why. Oysters have a high zinc content, a mineral essential to the production of testosterone, the male sex hormone, and the maintenance of healthy sperm. If the idea of throwing back a few of these sexy jewels doesn’t cut the mustard for you, try adding pine nuts to your salads, chicken, fish, or vegetable side dishes. Pine nuts also qualify as they too, contain large amounts of zinc relative to other nuts.
Hot peppers. A group of alleged aphrodisiacs – cayenne and other chili peppers – sometimes sold in the form of an extract, but its effect on the body may be more discomfort-inducing than arousing. The fiery fruits contain varying levels of a chemical irritant called capsaicin, which, when ingested, causes an increase in heart rate and breathing, sweating, and blood flow – similar to the body’s response to sexual arousal.
Chocolate. Probably the most famous – and most studied – of all aphrodisiac foods, chocolate contains feel-good brain chemicals, serotonin, and anandamide, as well as phenylethylamine (PEA), which increases endorphins, all of which contribute to feelings of happiness and euphoria during sex. Eureka! To get the greatest concentration of chocolate’s antioxidant and brain chemical power, I recommend dark chocolate with 65-80 percent cacao, which has more nutrients than its sugary counter parts.
Almonds. These nuts are rich in zinc, selenium, (minerals), and vitamin E, all of which are important to sexual health and reproduction. Selenium helps with infertility, vitamin E plays a vital role in heart health, and the mineral zinc helps to produce men’s sex hormones and boosts libido. Almonds are chock-full of good heart-healthy omega-3 fats as well. Add them to salads, eat handfuls for snacks and make sure you opt for raw almonds as salted varieties cause bloating.
Yoga Move to Put the Moves On!
I personally adore most yoga moves because the very practice of yoga gives you a more supple body that can be moved, bent, folded and eased into almost any direction. The fact that you can achieve yoga moves is bound to make you feel sexy! But studies show that circulation below-the-belt is directly linked to arousal and this move delivers. So here’s my fave:
The Wide-legged Straddle Pose. It’s good for low libido because it increases blood flow to the pelvic area; and where blood flows, your energy and vitality goes so—
Sit on the floor, legs spread arms-length apart (as wide as you can spread them), point toes upward, touching the insole of your feet, with your head down, and face almost touching the floor. Hold the position for 30 seconds or as along as you can.
Rovenia Brock, Ph.D., is a medical advisory board member and contributor the “Dr. Oz Show,” where she helped more than a half-million Americans lose more than 5 million pounds. She is the author of Dr. Ro’s Ten Secrets To Livin’ Healthy (Bantam). For more health, nutrition, and fitness tips, join Dr. Ro and her social media community at www.everythingro.com.