At some point in your life, you may feel that your sex drive has gone awry. It is not what it used to be, you might say. But you are not alone on this. A lot of people from all walks of life have experienced a decrease in their libido. This will eventually affect your relationship with your partner, even if you share a strong relationship with him/her.
According to experts, a sexless relationship can put a toll in any type of relationship. This is especially true if your partner has higher sex drive than you or the other way around.
A lack of sex drive is one of the main reasons couples argue. Oftentimes, it places above money and other sources of conﬂict. But there are tons of reasons this issue arises. The most common one is medical issue. Regardless of the cause, you can increase your sex drive without resorting to prescription medicines.
Known to herbalists as Turnera diffusa, Damiana grows abundantly in hot, humid climates. Hence, it is common to see it growing in Mexico, South America, California and other hot, humid places. Its scientiﬁc literature is dated back more than 10 decades ago after its aphrodisiac effects had been unearthed.
It was the Mayas who ﬁrst started using this herb. At that time, these people used it to treat their loss of balance. In the last century, however, this herb has been primarily used as an aphrodisiac. According to a Spanish missionary, the Mexican-Indians drank the leaves of this herb because of their love-enhancing properties.
It was only in the 1870s that damiana was imported to the US and marketed as a tincture. It was advertised as a natural aphrodisiac. Through its aphrodisiac properties, it was given to aged men and women to improve their sexual ability. Even up to now, this herb enjoys success in this ﬁeld.
In 1888, it was included in the ﬁrst edition of NF or National Formulary. It was noted as an elixir and ﬂuid extract. But it did not end up in the US Pharmacopeia. The elixir part was eliminated from NF in the year 1916. Its ﬂuid extract and leaves were still listed up to 1947.
Even though many companies were still selling it to the market, the herb’s popularity had almost disappeared after it was unlisted in the NF. But it was brought up again in the 1960s through a hippy movement.
These days, you can ﬁnd damiana in various herbal supplements that claim to improve sex drive. People in the Caribbean obtain the herb’s leaves and boil in water. The vapors produced are inhaled to relieve their headaches. They also make a damiana tea as a way to control bed wetting.
It is difﬁcult to understand damiana’s chemical structure. But herbalists
consider its active components as the reasons for its medical uses and applications. The volatile oil in this herb contains at least 20 useful elements, like calamine, alpha and beta-pinene. Its leaves, on the other hand, are rich in ﬂavonoids, tannins, arbutrin, and beta-sitosterol.
Currently, damiana is processed in different forms, such as tablets, tea, tinctures, extracts and capsules. However, you will need to combine it with other herbs to obtain its higher efficiency. Although many doctors are still hesitant to consider it as a useful herb in treating various illnesses, including loss of libido, herbalists and other individuals who have already tried its beneﬁcial effects are considering this plant as precious. Nevertheless, research is still necessary to further verify its actions to the human body.
Abundant in Central and South America, damiana is being used in medical preparations. The two species of damiana used in herbal healing are Tumera aphrodisiaca and Tumera diffusa. Its other names will include pastorate, oreganellow and woman’s broom, among others. The most useful part of this plant is its leaf, where its beneﬁcial components are concentrated. Either you chew it raw or use it to make a tea; damiana is a wonderful herb with many health beneﬁts.
Here is a list of the most common uses of damiana.
1. Sexual Function
Whether it is in pill or liquid form, this plant offers positive sexual beneﬁts.
Women also beneﬁted from this plant as it increases their libido, which is driven by the pleasurable nature of the sex. Because of its anti-anxiety and aphrodisiac components, it reduces the tension and nervousness of women, which may prevent them from achieving female climax.
Apart from its aphrodisiac effects, damiana can also be used to treat depression. It can boost your overall mood allowing you to
feel better all the time. Because of these effects, herbalists do recommend it to patients suffering from anxiety.
Through its natural ability to relieve anxiety and reduce stress, damiana can also be used to modify and control nervous responses in patients with problems regarding central nervous system.
3. Urinary Tract Infection
Damiana is not only known for its aphrodisiac effects and calming components but it is also known for its diuretic and antiseptic properties. Because of these, it can be used as an herbal remedy in treating urinary tract infections. The arbutin of this plant is converted into hydroquinone, which becomes a powerful antiseptic.
This plant also provides laxative effects to those suffering from constipation as it relaxes the muscles in the gastro-intestines.
You can use damiana in treating your headache by boiling its leaves in water and inhaling its steam. Because it provides soothing effects on the CNS, it can treat painful headaches.
The lack of energy can be alleviated through the use of damiana as it can enhance blood circulation and improve stamina.
7. Menopausal Symptoms
Damiana is also useful in regulating hormone production and its levels, thereby, effective in alleviating the symptoms of menopause, including night sweats and hot ﬂashes.
Other uses of damiana will include as a ﬂavoring to many liqueurs, tea and beverages. It can also be added as a ﬂavoring to some foods in Mexico. In fact, it has been approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration for food use.
Damiana is a useful herb that treats several disorders, including decreased libido, anxiety and depression. Because of its many health beneﬁts, you might consider taking it in higher dosage. But this could lead to plenty of side effects related to excess damiana consumptions. Some of its known side effects will include the following:
How damiana affects your body will depend on the method of delivery.
Diarrhea. Through its laxative effects, diarrhea may arise caused by consumption of this plant. If you are experiencing stomach discomfort and diarrhea, you should lower the dosage or stop using it for a while. Wait for it to subside before you begin to take it again. This is to help you determine how much of this plant’s components your stomach can take.
Effects on your emotions. Normal dosage of this plant can improve your mood. But if taken on larger dose, then it can have extreme effects on your emotions. With that in mind, you may experience hallucinations and manic feelings.
Hypoglycemia. This is the reason diabetics are not allowed to take damiana as it can lower blood sugar levels to the point that they become dangerous for diabetics. However, if you still want to take it, you can counteract its blood sugar effects by consuming foods high in carbohydrates. But you must not use damiana weeks prior to your surgery as it can cause blood glucose problems during the surgical operation.
Miscarriage. As it regulates or alters hormone levels, pregnant women are not allowed to take this plant because it can cause miscarriage.
The leaf of this plant is ground up to create a tea. Or it is soaked in
alcohol to produce a damiana tincture. Because it is difﬁcult to find damiana plant, you may purchase it in capsule forms, which are available in health food stores. These supplements are safe to be taken by healthy individuals. This means that it has to be consumed in regular doses.
Opting to smoke this plant may lead to respiratory difﬁculty because smoking delivers high amount of damiana components to your body. This may lead to hallucinations and seizures.
Damiana is generally safe for consumption. But you must also heed to the side effects mentioned above. As discussed earlier, it is fairly safe to use damiana but its associated risks increase with the dosage. Keep in
mind that larger amounts are considered to be very harmful to the body.
Its recommended daily dosages are the following:
For damiana extract, it is safe to consume two to four milliliters three times a day.
If you are taking it in capsule form, two to four grants of damiana are safe to be taken three times a day. But you must follow the guidelines provided by the manufacturer of the product.
As a tea, you can take one cup of boiling water three times a day.
If you smoke damiana, you can feel its effects within a few minutes. The effects would last one to two hours. Smoking three to ﬁve grams of the plant’s leaves each day is safe.
Overview & Conclusion
The uses of damiana are aplenty, even though scientists considered it as a useless herb. It is not harmful when taken in recommended dosage. Clinical tests suggested that the herb dilates blood vessels; therefore, it is effective in improving sexual drive and alleviating erectile dysfunction. Mild constipation may also be treated through this herb.
The effectiveness of damiana is affected through various factors. As long as you are using it in its recommended dosage, you will be okay.
Today, this herb is recommended by herbalists to treat female sexual dysfunction. In fact, it has been recommended by some doctors as a remedy to treat female frigidity. This is one of the reasons damiana has been included as an ingredient in various Viagra-like natural supplements. You can also see it in love potions and cures for impotence.
Some spas in Mexico are using damiana into their beverages or skin products. For instance, damiana is being used together with honey as a body wrap. Its beverage form, on the other hand, can be enjoyed as a drink after dinner because of its sweet taste.
The medical uses of damiana are still being studied. But many individuals have already tried and tested its health beneﬁts. This is one of the herbal remedies that offer essential health beneﬁts to humans. It can be easily available at health food stores and you can purchase it online.
As always, it is wise to consult your physician or healthcare provider about the use of a supplement that contains such a plant. This is especially true if you have a certain medical condition.