The Brazilian government has led research into more than 120 prosexual herbs, with three standing out as more effective than the rest. Catuaba, derived from the bark of the Tree of Love in the Amazon, has been studied for its aphrodisiac qualities, and has been found to promote erotic dreams in men and women. Within five to 21 days of taking the herb, patients reported increased sexual desire for their partners. Yohimbine, an extract from the bark of a West African tree, has similar effects on the dreams of men and women. It has also been approved by the Food and Drug Administation for erectile dysfunction. Damiana is derived from the leaves of a small shrub, Turnera diffusa aphrodisiaca, the name of which gives a nod to its prosexual quality. Those who take the herb report tingling and throbbing in their genital area, as well as increased blood flow and sensitivity in the clitoris (or penis in men).
Ginkgo biloba contains chemicals that relax blood vessels and boost circulation to the genitals, among other organs. Ginseng has also been reported to have an aphrodisiac effect in humans as it increases nitric oxide levels in the spongy tissue of the clitoris (and penis). Women with a penchant for vaginal dryness should look at Siberian ginseng, an herb that relieves this symptom; while still being researched for its effect in humans, Siberian ginseng enhances vitality through the normalization of sex hormone levels.
Damiana leaf increases sensitivity in the clitoris, stimulates sexual desire and pleasure, and strengthens the hormone system. Muira puama increases libido and helps hormone production. Black cohosh has compounds that mimic estrogen and balance the body's hormone levels. Licorice balances hormone ratios as well as alleviates stress. Coleus forshokli, aloe vera, guarana, black walnut and passion flower stimulate blood flow and increase energy.
Finally, St. John's wort boosts the sex drive, enabling users to feel sexy and more confident in the bedroom. While usually prescribed for those suffering from depression and its symptoms, including low sex drive, it has the potential to heighten sex drive in middle-aged and older women in the absence of depression.