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Natural Libido Boosters

May09

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Advice Smackdown ArchivesHi Amalah!

I’ve been reading for years now and I have a little “problem”. Actually, I have to admit to not having read too much recently because… actually, it’s a pretty huge problem with an unfortunate tangential crisis. I’ve been struggling with unexplained infertility for over two years now (that’s the huge problem) and just in the last month or two, the whole process has started to put a damper on my romantic tendencies (unfortunate tangential crisis). I’m pretty proud that it took this long frankly. An online friend who is also struggling with infertility recently commented, “I wish I still had private parts” and that about covers it. I’ve lost count of the number of medical professionals who have been “up in my business” in the last two years and it kinda dulls the excitement of undressing from the waist down.

Still reading? Good, because here’s where I’m hoping you can help. A LONG time ago, you mentioned a supplement (or possibly a tea?) that you had used to stir the embers a bit when you were feeling a little less than sexy. I don’t remember if you mentioned it in your blog or in the Advice Smackdown and I can’t figure out how to search the archives of the Smackdown anymore (I’m getting old and change is haaaard).

Do you remember what this stuff was? Do you have any other suggestions, because I adore my wonderful husband and he deserves so much more action than I can provide these days!

Please, please, please tell me I didn’t imagine this and you know what I’m talking about!

Slackie

I do! I do know what you’re talking about. And no, you didn’t imagine anything. The topic simply got lost in the sea of Amalah Probably Writes Far Too Many Things On The Internet, and you’re not the first person to email me asking just what the heck happened to that column that mentioned the lady-libido thing. Or the second, or third! In fact, I have gotten SO MANY emails (usually via my personal email account) asking where that recommendation can be found that I realized it’s high time I revisit the topic anew, here at the Advice Smackdown where people seem to be looking for it. [Editor’s note: for future reference, if you’re looking for quick access, type “libido” into the search box and the sought-after post is the first one to pop up.]

Because the original column was NOT actually part of the Advice Smackdown, but a Bounce Back column on low libido and getting your sexy back after baby.

The supplement in question is an herbal blend I bought at Whole Foods. Not really any sort of big hard-to-obtain secret formula handed down by a shaman you must visit on a mountaintop after sacrificing a chicken or anything. Head to the general lady-supplement area (where they keep the women’s multivitamins, prenatal vitamins, general stuff for the female business), and you’ll see a couple different options for women’s libido. If you don’t have Whole Foods in your area, a quick search of both GNC and the Vitamin Shoppe’s websites reveal that they also carry similar supplements. Personally, the Gaia Herbs Women’s Libido variety is my favorite, but your mileage may definitely vary. There’s also Hot Plants For Her and Irwin Naturals Steel Libido for Women, both of which contain a few of the same herbs plus a few different ones.

And what herbs are we talking about here, exactly? Let’s go to the labels: Horny goat weed, Damiana leaf, Maca root, Ashwagandha root, Wild Oats milky seed, Blue Vervain and other assorted root, bark and flower extracts, depending on which formula you go with. Exactly the sort of thing I usually shrug off as bullhockey, personally, but what can I say? I was desperate and so was my husband, more than a little bit, and willing to give anything a try. Luckily, I was more than pleasantly surprised. (OHHHHH yeeeeeeeeeaaah.) Your body might respond to some of these ingredients more/better than others, or not at all. For me, the Gaia variety is the one that produced the most significant, that’s-totally-not-in-my-head-unless-you-count-the-crazy-sexy-dreams-omg results.

You cannot take these formulas if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, and should always talk to you doctor before adding a supplement to your diet, particularly if you regularly take other medications. (Herbal supplements are NOTORIOUS for interfering with prescription medications, since they are not regulated by the FDA or dispensed through your pharmacist who can check for interactions.) (And NO, I DO NOT COUNT AS YOUR DOCTOR.)

About the author

Amalah

http://www.amalah.com
Amalah is a pseudonym of Amy Corbett Storch. She is the author of the Advice Smackdown and Bounce Back. You can follow Amy's daily mothering adventures at Amalah. Also, it's pronounced AIM-ah-lah.

If there is a question you would like answered on the Advice Smackdown, please submit it to amyadvice@gmail.com.

Amy also documented her second pregnancy (with Ezra) in our wildly popular Weekly Pregnancy Calendar, Zero to Forty.

Amy is mother to rising first-grader Noah, preschooler Ezra, and toddler Ike.


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17 Responses to “Natural Libido Boosters”

  1. Bonnie May 09 at 12:36 pm Reply Reply

    Is there anything you can take if you are breastfeeding? Because my husband would really, really appreciate that. Probably getting more than two unbroken hours of sleep would help, but unfortunately I think the mountaintop-shaman-chicken-sacrifice thing would be easier than getting the babe to sleep. Plus I hear I can blame the bfing hormones, so can anything be done?

  2. R May 09 at 1:24 pm Reply Reply

    Whew! Good thing I read all the way to that last paragraph! I guess Hubby will have to wait until Baby is weaned to get some Fun Time.

    Come on, weaning – Momma needs some action too!

  3. ally May 09 at 2:03 pm Reply Reply

    I’m on the same page as Bonnie. What helps when you are breastfeeding?

  4. Katxena May 09 at 2:41 pm Reply Reply

    Personally, I find a hot romance novel does the trick for me. I hadn’t read a romance novel in decades, then I discovered that there are new lines that are a lot more explicit than the ones I grew up with, but not in a gross way. Check out the Harlequin Blaze line (my favorites are by Leslie Kelly). If you have a Kindle, you can also get Samhain and Ellora’s cave books for free on Amazon, but those are often more explicit and sometimes go to far for my tastes (but YMMV, and I won’t judge).

  5. bouncy May 09 at 2:43 pm Reply Reply

    Same here with the breastfeeding… *sigh*

  6. Wiley May 09 at 3:12 pm Reply Reply

    Seems like a revisit for those who are breastfeeding is in order. Sigh.

  7. EmilysHollow May 09 at 4:45 pm Reply Reply

    While I was still breastfeeding, my (naturalist) doctor said I could take Maca Powder. You can get it online or just about any healthfood stores. I put some of the powder into yogurt smoothes or juice and shook it up a lot and rank it super fast because I didn’t care for the taste (it’s not bad to some people, though). It wasn’t a magic cure all, but it helped, and it was totally bf safe. As you get used to it you can take it more than once a day. Also helped shed some of the extra pounds that lingered.

  8. EmilysHollow May 09 at 4:49 pm Reply Reply

    I hope this doesn’t double post.

    When I was still nursing, my doctor said I could take Maca Powder to help out with the post partum libido issues. It’s available online or at health food stores. I got the actual powder and mixed it into smoothies or juice. I didn’t LOVE the taste, but it’s not horrific. As you get used to it, you can take it more than once a day. It wasn’t a magic cure all, but it helped, and it helped me lose a few pounds of baby weight, too.

  9. jessica May 09 at 5:03 pm Reply Reply

    In addition to the supplements being unsafe while nursing, breastfeeding leaves you naturally estrogen depleted (not even taking into consideration the whole sleep-deprived, crying baby situation), which is likely to put the kibash on your libido, especially if you’re baby’s sole source of food. I have had friends try (with varying success) getting a lot of pomegranate into their diets as a way to kick things up a notch. And even if it does jack shit for your sex drive, it’s still good for you!

  10. JenVegas May 09 at 5:14 pm Reply Reply

    Well, while I knew it wasn’t just me I’m super glad to know it’s not just me. Dear Libido, my husband misses you.

  11. kari Weber May 09 at 9:29 pm Reply Reply

    I totally second the reading a naughty novel… It works.  Even if just to remind you of what it FEELS like to actually have some stirrings in yer’ nether-regions!  Not necessarily a permanent  fix… but drug free!  And safe for breastfeeding!

  12. js May 10 at 11:29 am Reply Reply

    There are a number of naughty novels in the free/promotional area of the kindle bookstore. I have found a few written by Anonymous in the victorian/edwardian (?) era that are both explicit and hilarious in their old fashionedness. “oh sir, would you be so kind as to blah blah blah…”

  13. Drew May 10 at 12:18 pm Reply Reply

    As a fellow infertile, I can totally relate. And quite honestly, I don’t know if there’s a magic herbal supplement or tea that can fix the issue going on here, though I suppose it couldn’t hurt (although my RE has nixed any supplemental herbs for me). I think it’s a totally different problem than a low libido due to breastfeeding. Much more about how sex (which is supposed to make babies!) has become a chore. Nothing sexy about chores. While it can also have to do with everyone under the sun knowing all about what’s going on with your lady bits, I would bet that the monotony of trying to get pregnant sex has also set in. My suggestion is to talk to your husband (or a therapist) about it. Just know that it’s going to be rough for awhile.

  14. Emily May 11 at 10:33 pm Reply Reply

    I’ve been there. ‘yeah yeah, the kit says I’m about to ovulate, let’s get your guys up there to wait’. lol good luck to you all! I am wondering HOW unsafe those are while pregnant? Are we talking ‘I had a glass of wine when I didn’t know I was pregnant yet’ or ‘I drank a glass of mercury when I didn’t know I was pregnant yet’? I’m guessing the former, but I always worry about those types of things. I’m the one who cut down on all the ‘bad’ things when I was trying to get pregnant which means I was about 2 years without decent amounts of coffee (making up for it now!).

  15. HeyThatWasMyQuestion May 12 at 10:31 pm Reply Reply

    Thank you so much! Might not be able to use it while cycling, but glad to have the info for reference!

  16. Brie May 14 at 1:29 pm Reply Reply

    Is there anything you can do or take while pregnant? I am 5 months pp with my first baby and 2 months pregnant with my second baby. It sucks so hard.

  17. Kati Jun 25 at 12:57 pm Reply Reply

    as a fellow TTC’er, something that we found helpful to keep the baby dancing from becoming drudgery was to plan out each month how sex week was going to look.  

    so basically, i’d get my period and have a little cry fest and a glass of wine, and then a few days later, DH and i would talk about what we haven’t done in a while.  one month, all we did was pull out lingerie i’d boxed up and neglected.  

    it has really helped my frame of mind – i want a baby so very much that it hurts sometimes, but planning ahead for sex week put my focus back on how much i love my husband, too.  our baby dancing has become the funnest sex we have all month!

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