Our last blog included an aphrodisiac “breakfast in bed” recipe from the cookbook “Intercourses”, a Tulip bestseller. Since we received a lot of positive feedback on that blog (and the steamy recipe), we decided a continuation on the subject is a must. We did our research, and it’s quite interesting. According to the FDA, there is no such thing as an aphrodisiac. But ancient history tells a different story. Throughout history, various foods have been held in the highest regards as aphrodisiacs.
The word aphrodisiac derives from the Greek goddess of beauty and love, Aphrodite. Here is a brief history & science of just a few , but very potent, aphrodisiac ingredients;
Cupid was known for dipping his arrows in honey before shooting them at unsuspecting lovers.
Honey is know throughout history as one of the most potent aphrodisiacs. Honey itself is made through pollination, a symbol of procreation. The term honeymoon makes more sense now! Honey also contains boran, which helps regulate testosterone and estrogen levels and provide a natural energy boost. According to www.benefits-of-honey.com, “a scientific study found that a three-ounce dose of honey significantly increased the level of nitric oxide, the chemical released in the blood during arousal.” They continue to say, “It was said that Greek physician Hippocrates, one of the most outstanding figures in the history of medicine, prescribed honey for sexual vigor and advocated the taking of milk and honey to induce love and ecstasy”.
The Aztecs called the avocado ahuauatl, or “testicle tree”.
Maybe it’s the pear-shaped form, or the delicious soft interior, the avocado has been considered an aphrodisiac food as far back in history as the Aztecs. Barbara Klein, professor of food and nutrition at the University of Illinois, told the California Avocado Commission that the fruit’s high levels of vitamin E could help maintain the spark alive because of its role of maintaining “youthful vigor and energy level.” The Aztecs called the avocado ahuauatl, or “testicle tree”. According to Discovery Health, “The high-quality Vitamin E content of this super-food can boost the state of arousal and intensity orgasm.”
Chocolate is not only extremely sensual through it’s aroma, texture, and taste, but dark chocolate has been shown to cause an increase in dopamine, which creates feelings of pleasure. According to eatsomethingsexy.com, “Michael Liebowitz of the New York State Psychiatric institute proved that the phenylethylamine (PEA) in
chocolate releases the same hormone as does sexual intercourse. Although naysayer object that the amount of PEA in chocolate is too small to produce significant results, this sweet drug offers hundreds of other chemical compounds – in fact, chocolate is among the world’s most complex foods.”
“In Italy, where sweet basil is called “kiss me Nicholas,” “bacia-nicola,” it is thought to attract husbands to wives, and a pot of basil on a windowsill is meant to signal a lover.”
In our last blog, we posted an aphrodisiac Basil Fritatta recipe, so we couldn’t leave out the amazing sexy properties of the basil leaf. According to Womansday.com, “the flavonoids in basil are anti-inflammatory, which combats erectile dysfunction and low libido. Lowering inflammation increases blood circulation, which aids erections.”
The Herb Society (www.herbsociety.org) explains the history of basil & love intertwining, “[Basil] has been considered an aphrodisiac by some, is associated with the pagan love goddess, Erzuli, and is used in love spells. In Italy, where sweet basil is called “kiss me Nicholas,” “bacia-nicola,” it is thought to attract husbands to wives, and a pot of basil on a windowsill is meant to signal a lover. In Moldavian folklore, if a man accepts a sprig of basil from a woman, he will fall in love with her. As is typical for its folklore, while being linked to love and attraction, basil has also conversely been associated with chastity.”
Eating tomatoes is known to aid in sexual performance. They help calm pre-sex nerves, which can be especially helpful in a first-time-partner situation. Furthermore, the tomato is also known for improving muscle control, which can aid in a number of other sexy efforts, too.
We left this for last because of it’s intense smell, but had to include it because of it’s potency and vast history of use for sexual potency and libido. While garlic isn’t necessarily the most desirable odor you might want during some romance, when you’re both eating it, it won’t make a difference and according to Session Magazine, garlic is the third most powerful aphrodisiac in the world.
Garlic helps with blood circulation. According to Dr. Joerg Gruenwald of Berlin University, “A lot of men with heart disease will have impotence but not realize poor circulation and narrowing of the arteries in the groin is to blame. Garlic can help. A good flow of blood to the groin means a man should not have a problem with sex.”
Additionally, in history, “Myths tell that the priestesses that controlled the temples of Eros, Aphrodite or Dionisio were experts in preparing love potions. It is said that the base of their power lied in garlic..
In another publishing, The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew (United Kingdom), Plant Culture wrote this bit of garlic history: “The ancient Indians valued the medicinal properties of garlic and thought it to be an aphrodisiac. [but...] It was also forbidden by monks who believed it to be a stimulant which aroused passions. Widows, adolescents and those who had taken up a vow or were fasting could not eat garlic because of its stimulant quality.”
In Jewish Magic and Superstition, by Joshua Trachtenberg (1939) we are told that Jewish traditional belief held that garlic was among those things “which heat the body and awaken sexual desire.” ”
*Tulip Recommendation: This Valentine’s Day, make your partner an aphrodisiac meal and enjoy the aftermath!