For centuries, cultures all over the world have tried to link erogenous foods to sexuality as part of our natural aphrodisiac. Some foods like mussels, strawberries, oysters, caviar, and even cherries are said to enhance the release of oxyctocin in the brain to stimulate sexual desire. Depending on the culture, there are a variety of foods and herbs that causes someone to go into a heated frenzy. Whether fact or fiction, we all use food as a romantic gesture to create a “wanting” desire within our partner. From oysters to lettuce, let’s take a look at what stimulates the senses across continents.
Balut (Phillipines, Cambodia and Vietnam)- is a fertilized duck (or chicken) egg with a nearly-developed embryo inside that is boiled and eaten in the shell. Balut is believed to be an aphrodisiac because its a high-protein and hearty snack.
Borojo (Borojoa patinoi) (Colombian)- a large fruit (about 12 cm length) with a round shape and brown color. The Borojo has high levels of protein, phosphorus, ascorbic acid, calcium and iron. Used in the preparation of jam, wine, desserts and traditional medicines with supposed aphrodisiac effects for those who consume it.
Cow cod soup (Jamaica)- a traditional dish in Jamaican cuisine, it is made with bull penis (or “cod”). Cos soup is cooked with bananas and scotch bonnet pepper in a white rum-based broth that is said to give you sexual virility and strength to last and last.
Damiana (Turnera diffusa) (Central America, Mexico, South America, and the Caribbean), is a shrub that produces small, aromatic flowers. A taste similar to figs, the shrub is said to have an strong spice like odor somewhat like chamomile and enhances sexual abilities and longevity.
Deer penis and antlers (in Taiwan and China)- contains substances like the stimulant herbal ephedrine. The penis of a deer or tiger is considered a natural aphrodisiac that also enhances male virility and sperm production.
Eruca Sativa- native to the Mediterranean region, from Morocco and Portugal east to Lebanon and Turkey is an edible annual plant. It is used as a leaf vegetable, which looks similar to lettuce. Rich in vitamin C and potassium, it is considered an aphrodisiac for its sweet peppery taste and strong flavor.
Epimedium Grandiflorum (Horny Goat Weed) (Korea, China, and Japan)- a species of flowering plant or herb has been shown to increased sexual activity.
Ginseng-(China). Ginseng has long been respected in China for its systemic healing properties, including the ability to aid sexual function.
Hot Chili Peppers- South American, mostly Peruvian
Licorice Beignets (Chinese, Egyptians and Hindus) have all used licorice to increase sexual arousal and stamina, since it contains phytoestrogen sterols, which affect sex hormones.
Mamajuana( Dominican Republic)- considered an alcoholic sex drink, this concoction includes rum, red wine, and honey, soaked in a bottle with tree bark and herbs. Noted as an aphrodisiac, the Dominicans claim the drink has similar effects to Viagra.
Yohimbine- (West African), is an oil that comes from the bark of the West African Pausinystalia Yohimbe tree. Said to work by blocking the blood vessel-constricting effects of adrenaline on the nerves. This promotes the flow of blood to the genitals, which assist erections.