Imagine you and your partner are about to enjoy a romantic dinner together. You are dressed in your finest clothes and have made reservations at a nice restaurant. When you arrive, you are guided to a candlelit table. Soft music plays in the background. The maitre d’ tells you that you should leave the ordering all to him. He will ensure that you have the perfect evening.
After a while, the waiter arrives with the food. He places the plates in front of you with a flourish. “Here is your pumpkin seed muffin, Ma’am. And for you, Sir, a beet salad. Enjoy!”
At this point, you either start tearing up or you look for hidden cameras, because this has to be a prank. Isn't romance supposed to be about French food and champagne and strawberries dipped in chocolate?
Not necessarily. According to Science Channel, here are some popular aphrodisiacs that may or may not be effective:
1. Chocolate – Oh, chocolate. It makes us so happy. Mostly because it increases serotonin, a chemical linked to happiness. It also has phenylethylamine, a natural neurotransmitter associated with love. Unfortunately, phenylethylamine is too quickly digested to have any real effect in the bedroom.
Verdict: Mixed reviews on this one. On the one hand, there seems to be no direct aphrodisiacal link. On the other hand, it's a great way to get a happiness boost.
2. Strawberries –They are red, juicy and pretty to look at. Other than some sugar for energy, however, you probably won’t get much out of this fruit.
Verdict: Eat strawberries for their antioxidants and all that good stuff, but you needn’t make a special effort to buy them.
3. Oysters – Yes, it is a cliché. But it is also true. Oysters are a good choice because they are packed with zinc, which helps with male fertility. Oysters also contain iron, which is known to fight fatigue and keep energy levels up.
Verdict: Charge up the romance with a dinner reservation at a seafood restaurant!
So what other foods will help get you in the mood? Dr. Oz talks about real aphrodisiacs, some of which may surprise you.
1. Halibut –The magnesium in halibut can raise testosterone levels, which leads to a higher libido in both sexes. Hmmm... we are beginning to see a seafood link here!
2. Vegetables - Asparagus is a naturally occurring form of folic acid, while beets are nitrate-rich. Both folic acid and nitrates improve blood flow. We are never looking at vegetables the same way again!
3. Garlic -- Garlic contains allicin, a compound that thins the blood and improves blood circulation. Just don’t forget to have a mint after you eat some!
4. Other zinc-rich foods – Not a fan of oysters? Try some pumpkin seeds, beef, lamb and wheat germ for a fertility-boost.
Here's an interesting one: According to RD.com, chili peppers stimulate feel-good endorphins. They also increase your heart rate and make you perspire, which all mimic how you feel when you're aroused. Now that’s what we call spicing things up!
So you see, maybe that waiter was onto something when he served beets and pumpkin seeds.