Medically review by Kim Langdon
It's time to spice things up on the blog today.
As always, we're talking about food (what else would you expect?), but today, it's all about bedtime snacks. And no, we're not talking about foods for a good night's sleep, although you may get that too.
We're talking about foods with proven benefits to kick things up a notch in the bedroom.
From increasing the spark between you and your better half to having a more powerful orgasm, we've got some ideas for a sexy menu.
Top 15 Foods For Better Sex
The good news is that a cheese plate is a perfectly suitable dinner choice for a date night.
While you might think you ought to avoid anything too tangy to maintain fresh breath, you should think again.
The smell of cheese can increase circulation uh, down there for men. Cheese is also rich in magnesium which is linked to better orgasms.
Asparagus is good for more than making your pee smell funny.
Turns out, foods with a phallic shape aren't just a little bit laughable to teenagers; asparagus' shape actually has something to do with its long-term aphrodisiac status.
The B6 and folate found in this green veggie can up the arousal and orgasm in both men and women.
To some, figs are an obvious choice. They look succulent and taste sweet.
They've long been used as a sexual symbol throughout history, so it's no surprise that they're known to heighten libido.
Both men and women can expect to see an increase in sexual function and libido due to the amino acids found in figs.
They're also a common aphrodisiac. You can choose either fresh or dried.
If you can dig it, a scoop of brown rice at dinner could lead to better sex later. It's high in magnesium which is vital to muscle contraction.
Of course, this is a huge part of the experience from the beginning stages of arousal to the big O.
Brown rice is also a source of arginine which may aid in the relaxation of the blood vessels.
Cucumbers are mostly water, so it can't hurt to cool down with a few slices as a "bedtime snack."
They just so happen to increase circulation which is good for our entire bodies, but very good for our sex organs.
This is especially true for women, so ladies - eat up!
While you might want to avoid drinking coffee before a nighttime rendezvous, you might be inspired to stay in bed a little longer on those lazy weekend mornings.
This study done with rats shows that caffeine can signal sexual arousal.
Caffeine (around 2 cups of coffee per day) can also increase blood flow to the penis and boost sex drive in women.
Don't overdo it, though - more than that can cause an opposite reaction.
Oysters are a widely known aphrodisiac, and they have been for centuries. Casanova and Cleopatra ring a bell? There's no surprise they made the cut.
They improve dopamine levels which boosts libido in both men and women. The daily dose of zinc helps testosterone production and healthy sperm.
Is watermelon the new Viagra?
Maybe so, or at least it can compare. It contains compounds that help to relax the blood vessels much like the popular sexual stimulant and even increase libido.
The ever-popular sushi date might have a bit of subconscious meaning behind it, besides the fact that it's freaking delicious.
Raw fish is a great food for sexual health.
Salmon and mackerel, for example, are high in omega-3 fatty acids which are fantastic for the body in general but are particularly good for producing sex hormones.
Selenium, found in tuna, can also increase sperm count. Chow down!
Turns out, whole grains are a fairly effective natural remedy for erectile dysfunction.
This inherently gluten-free breakfast is good past its fibre content.
Like brown rice, it also contains arginine which increases blood flow and relaxes blood vessels 'down there' for men. If you're having 'male troubles,' a hot bowl of porridge might be the answer.
It's always exciting when chocolate appears on the list because we're always looking for an excuse to have our fix. In this case, we're encouraging daily use.
Case in point?
This research shows that women who indulged regularly had higher libidos. Stick to dark chocolate with little added sugar.
Does anything pair better with chocolate than a glass of red?
No, not really. You can't deny that this combination just feels sexy, but the best part is there's a little science behind it.
With wine, men can expect a testosterone boost which increases sexual appetite.
Unfortunately, there's not much research linking wine to sexual benefits for women, but we're here to tell you a glass or two couldn't hurt.
Like cheese, the musky scent of truffles has a way of turning you on.
These are pretty common aphrodisiacs since they contain alpha-androstenol which acts as a pheromone - the scent that humans pick up on other humans that causes attraction that we can't quite explain.
If you can find some real-deal truffles, it'll be worth the splurge.
The enzyme bromelain found in bananas can increase sex drive, so eat up.
The potassium and B-vitamins can also help pump up your energy if you're feeling tired, while still having a relaxing effect on the nervous system.
We wanted to end things on an extra spicy note, so here you have it.
Spicy foods like red chilies are known for their many benefits including a metabolism boost, but let's not forget the sexual benefits.
Some of this is tied to the physical reaction we get after eating spicy foods. Our heart rate rises and we start to sweat. Sounds a bit like...
Have your own secrets for hitting the sack? Share with us below!
This article was fact checked for accuracy by Dr. Kim Langdon, MD. As always, this is not personal medical advice and we recommend that you talk with your doctor.
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Kimberly Langdon M.D. is a retired University-trained obstetrician/gynecologist with 19-years of clinical experience. She delivered over 2000 babies to mothers in a suburban Midwestern community.