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Is your avocado toast revving up your libido?


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It’s true certain foods have the ability to lift your libido, but it’s not just about what you eat—it’s about when you eat it, according to Alisa Vitti (AKA “the hormone whisperer”). Here, the Wellness Council member gives the 411 on how consuming certain foods—avo FTW!—during the different phases of your period can super-charge your sex life. 

Here’s the biggest myth I want to bust: Seeing your sex drive take a major nosedive is not a normal part of aging. Not only are you entitled to great sex as you get older, but your quality of life depends on it. Having a rockin’ libido boosts your vitality, creativity, fertility, and all-around energy.

Yes, it’s true that all women have monthly hormonal highs and lows that directly impact their desires. But it’s possible to take advantage of your body’s natural chemistry and enhance your romantic life by incorporating the right foods at the ideal times in your menstrual cycle in order to increase arousal.

So why does your sex drive slow down? Keep reading to find out—as well as how to sync your diet (and your sex life) with your menstrual cycle for serious satisfaction.

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Why your libido is lagging

If you’re seeing your sex drive slip, you’re probably missing the two crucial testosterone surges your body should get every month that make you feel sexy and ready to pounce on your partner.

There are lots of reasons these testosterone spikes can fail to show up, but hormonally speaking, you can usually narrow down the cause of a low libido to three specific sources: fried adrenals, certain medications, (including birth control, which can lower your body’s natural testosterone levels), and high estrogen (some not-so-great food choices can mess up your digestion, leading to an excess of the female sex hormone).

So what’s a girl to do? Two words you may be familiar with if you know my style: cycle syncing.

When you sync your diet, lifestyle, and bedroom habits to your natural chemistry, you have the power to reclaim your body’s intuition and get your libido on track and better than ever.

You may have heard me use this term before to describe the process of eating and working out in a way that capitalizes on your body’s natural hormonal fluctuations during each week of the month—called the follicular, ovulatory, luteal, and menstrual phases.

When you sync your diet, lifestyle, and bedroom habits to your natural chemistry, you have the power to reclaim your body’s intuition and get your libido on track and better than ever.

Of course, all of this is contingent upon you being healthy, menstrually speaking—something you can maintain by tracking your period and balancing your hormones. In fact, you can start having a better period as soon as next month, with a supercharged sex life to go with it.

Yes please, right? Here’s how to start.

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Photo: StockSnap/Sonja Langford
Photo: StockSnap/Sonja Langford

Follicular phase (before you ovulate, but after your period)

What to eat: Honey. Though science has yet to connect the sweet stuff to sex drive, this ancient aphrodisiac does contain hormone-regulating boron and nitric oxide, an essential component of arousal.

Passion play: Your drive is naturally low right after your period, so extra attention goes a long way here. Focus on the touchy, non-penetrative aspects of sex. That means lots of foreplay to get you mentally and physically prepped.

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Ovulatory phase

What to eat: Strawberries and figs. Strawberries are the symbol of Venus, the Roman goddess of love, for good reason: They contain antioxidants and phytochemicals, and their symbolic power can get you mentally in the mood. The fiber and potassium in figs makes them another great hormone balancer. Plus, they’ve been associated with arousal since the times of ancient Greece—try dipping them in honey for a sensual treat.

Passion play: This is when your testosterone and estrogen levels are at their highest. So if you’re into quickies, now’s the time of the month to have them—all those sky-high hormones mean you won’t need a lot of foreplay.

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how to get your sex drive back asparagus
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Luteal phase (after you ovulate, but before your period)

What to eat: Asparagus and artichokes. Not exactly the sexiest of veggies, but asparagus contains aspartic acid, which can help prevent fatigue as well as low libido, while artichokes have an ancient connection to libido.

Passion play: Your estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone levels drop the closer you get to menstruation. That means you’ll need extra stimulation to climax. Now’s the time to break out any toys that help you increase sensation.

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Menstrual phase

What to eat: Avocados. Ancient Aztecs actually relied on avocados to incite sexual passion. They’re a great source of bioidentical testosterone, which will supplement your body when it’s lacking the natural stuff.

Passion play: Some women feel extra turned on this week because of the increased pressure in their pelvic and pubic area. But if you’re having cramps or migraines because of your period, you might want to try achieving pain-relieving orgasm with a partner or solo. Follow your instinct and do what feels right for you. It’s also perfectly okay to take a little celibacy break.

alisa_vitti_headshotAlisa Vitti, HHC, is a women’s hormone expert, an integrative nutritionist and a member of Well+Good’s Wellness Council, a handpicked holistic health squad that gives the best advice this side of your own personal guru. She is also the best-selling author of WomanCode, the creator of the MyFLO hormone-balancing period tracker app, and the founder of FLOLiving.com, a virtual health center that supports women’s hormonal and reproductive health. Follow her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram

What should Alisa write about next? Send your questions and suggestions to [email protected]