Dell H. Grecia
Why bother with aphrodisiacs and Viagra when your vegetable garden might yield rich, bountiful - and, yes, cheap - sources of the vitamins that boost sexual vitality?
As you work in your backyard garden, get to know the plants or veggies you grow, especially the benefits your body can reap from including these in your diet.
What we eat greatly affects our energy and drive.* There is a big difference between people who take food enriched with vitamins and minerals and those who don’t watch what they eat. Doctors observe, for instance that those who meet the requirements of a balanced diet are less inclined to indulge in smoking, drinking, and unhealthy eating habits.
What happens to the body that is properly nourished, specifically with foods that contain the all-important minerals and vitamins? A healthy body pre-disposes one to a zestful sex life?
What are these vitamins and what specific roles do they play in enhancing one’s sex life?
Vitamin A is the secret to smooth skin and a healthy glow. Foods rich in vitamin A include carrots, broccoli and other crucifers, yellow fruits and green leafy veggies. Deficiency in vitamin A leads to poor production of sex hormones and predisposes tissues to inflammation and infection.
Vitamin B can be derived from unpolished rice and other cereals, nuts and seeds.
Among the sources of niacin or vitamin B3 are asparagus, mungo sprouts (togue, lean meat and fish. This vitamin improves memory and, together with Vitamin A and minerals, is responsible for that healthy flush and glow. A deficiency may result in skin eruptions and pellagra.
There is also pyrodizine, which is vital to the functioning of our brain and nerves. A deficiency is manifested by a general feeling of weakness, neuritis and insomnia, which may all lead to loss of libido and failure to experience orgasm.
Choline, which is related to vitamin B, enhances sexual arousal and performance. It is an ingredient of lecithin, a rejuvenator. Lecithin also contains Inositol.
Dr. Jensen believes that Inositol, panthothenic acid, and para-aminobenzoic acid (PABA) constitutes what he calls the “youth vitamin.” Sources of this vitamin other than those already mentioned are eggs, crucifers, liver, legumes, whole grain nuts, and seeds like sesame. These also provide another vitamin B member, biotin, the lack of which in our body could lead to depression.**
Mango, avocado, citrus, tomato, guava, and strawberry are among rich sources of vitamin C (ascorbic acid), When we lack vitamin C, we suffer from bleeding of the gums, poor digestion, slow healing of wounds, susceptibility to cold and infections, shortness of breath- the early symptoms. Poor sex life is also attributed to a deficiency. Prolonged lack of this vitamin may lead to scurvy. It plays a role as well in the absorption of iron.
Iron, meanwhile, aids in oxygenation of the blood. A well oxygenated blood is efficient in carrying oxygen, hormones, and nutrients to the organs and tissues of the body.
Although there is no known direct effect on sex, the lack of vitamin D, which is actually a hormone complex known as sterols, adversely affects calcium-phosphorus balance and metabolism. Bone deformity in children and osteoporosis are the chief manifestation of a deficiency.
Regular sunlight exposure and calcium-phosphorus-rich food protect us from the symptoms of a deficiency in this vitamin. In later years, calcium supplements, mainly from milk, may be necessary.
Vitamin E, besides slowing down the aging process, adds zest to one’s sex life. It prevents the oxidation of fatty acids, which are important in the production of sex hormones. Vitamin E is found in most of the vitamin-rich food, but some people may still need supplements often marked tocopherols (for childbirth).
Vitamin F is very badly needed by the thyroid, adrenal, and prostate glands. It promotes calcium absorption, buffers cholesterol, and helps keep our hair and skin looking healthy. Most of the vitamin-rich foods provide us with adequate vitamin F.
Vitamin B12 was discovered in papait, derived from the chyme of ruminant animals. The chyme is filtered and pasteurized (heated below boiling for a few minutes and filtered). It is mixed with medium rare meat of goat or beef. This is the effective against tuberculosis and anemia.
Other food sources of this vitamin are fish, poultry, and seaweed like gamet, arusip, and gulaman. Chlorella and spirulina are rich in vitamin B12. Its lack is manifested by fatigue, irritability, paleness, muscle jerking, and mild mental problems- all of which can adversely affect one’s sex life.
To maximize the vitamins present in the food we eat, we must remember that heat destroys vitamins. Thus, vegetables must not be overcooked.
Alcohol and coffee prevent the absorption of nutrients, principally vitamins and minerals. It is also good to remember that even if we get the proper kind and amount of food, we must complement it with regular exercise and enough rest. A positive disposition won’t hurt either.
Why not try working in your garden? It’s a good workout for your body, which will also benefit from fresh air and sunshine.
Viagra became a byword when the United States’ Food and Drug Administration approved this first oral drug for “treating erectile dysfunction” in March 1998. It is not an aphrodisiac nor a miracle pill that endows all men with the capacity to have vigorous sex, however. It only works for men who are impotent, its manufacturer clarified. Besides, the drug is so expensive that only the rich can afford it.
Being a relatively new drug, Viagra must be used with caution because of its possible side effects. Thus, my friend Abe and his co-authors decided to write about Philippine plants known to contribute to sexual vitality other than having common uses as food and as local health remedies. These herbs, among others, could bring about improvements in one’s sex life and general health as well.
* **Philippine Herbs to Increase Your Sexual Vitality, Ontengco D DC, Del Rosario RM and AV Rotor