ED is the most common sex problem that men report to their doctor, according to the Urology Care Foundation. It affects as many as 30-M men and can lead to low self-esteem and depression.
While ED (erectile dysfunction) can happen for a variety of reasons, many men can ease or even reverse ED by making simple lifestyle changes, such as losing excess weight and quitting smoking, but for as many as 75% of men, the cause may be more complex.
According to Harvard Medical School, ED may result from vascular disease, neurological disease, diabetes, or prostate-related treatments or surgeries. Sometimes it’s a side effect of a medication you are taking.
However, enhancing sexual function for both men and women can be achieved also by including herbal therapies, says an expert.
“The search for sexual enhancing herbs and nutrients has been ongoing since the earliest times,” Dr. Ellen Kamhi, R.N., Ph.D., tells us. Dr. Kamhi, the author of “The Natural Guide to Sex: Improve Your Love Life with Nature’s Alternatives to HRT and Viagra,” says that while the pharmaceutical industry is currently capitalizing on the desires of millions who hope to enhance their sex lives, natural, less costly, and safer alternatives are available.
Here are some of the most widely recognized herbs that boost libido, as follows:
- Yohimbe. A popular dietary supplement made from the bark of an African evergreen tree, yohimbe is commonly used to treat erectile dysfunction as well as aid in fat loss. It works by blocking the receptors that prevent erections. In a review of seven controlled studies, yohimbe was clearly more effective than a placebo in treating ED. It’s important to buy the supplement from reliable sources to avoid potential side effects such as anxiety, gastrointestinal distress, and high blood pressure.
- Muira Puama. This herb that comes from the Brazilian Amazon is best known for its aphrodisiac qualities. Some other common names for this plant are “erection root” and “potency wood.” “It is listed in the British Herbal Pharmacopoeia as a treatment for impotence, and studies in France have verified the herb’s usefulness for men increasing libido and reducing impotence,” says Dr. Kamhi.
- Damiana. Traditionally used to treat bladder and urinary issues, drinking tea made from the leaves of this plant is said to enhance sexual performance and stamina in both men and women. These days, you can find it in tea bags and capsules. Read the label carefully and follow the recommended dosage.
- Korean red ginseng. It is used in Chinese medicine to treat a variety of ailments such as boosting the immune system, improving heart health, increasing energy and treating impotence. According to a study published in The Journal of Urology, “study subjects who took Korean Red ginseng over a placebo showed significant improvement in erections.” Researchers concluded that Red ginseng may be an effective treatment for impotence.
Dr. Kamhi cautions that since these herbs may interact with medications you may be taking, always check with your healthcare professional before taking any supplements
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