Damiana, or Turnera diffusa, is a plant native to Mexico, and grows readily in hot, humid areas such as Texas and Central and South America. A small shrub that produces aromatic yellow flowers, damiana contains aromatic essential oils, and the leaves are commonly used for medicinal purposes. Damiana was used by the Mayans as an aphrodisiac, and American doctors began using it in 1874. Damiana leaf tea may enhance fertility, but there is not enough evidence to support this claim. Consult with your health care provider prior to using damiana tea.
According to the Wellness International Network, damiana contains a number of different chemical constituents. Among these are betasitosterol, arbutin, alkaloids and aromatic oils such as pinene, cineol and pycymene. The active alkaloids in damiana may have a testosterone-like effect in your body, and this may be responsible for damiana's ability to raise libido in both men and women.
According to "New Life Journal," damiana can be a powerful female reproductive system tonic. Damiana is a nervine stimulant that can help energize and nourish your reproductive organs. This herb may also help balance your hormones and promote fertility in both men and women. Furthermore, damiana may help strengthen the ovaries and promote the growth of healthy eggs in women.
According to the "Canadian Journal of Health & Nutrition," damiana leaf tea was used traditionally in Mexico as a female aphrodisiac. Women who regularly consumed damiana reported increased interest in sex, reduced anxiety and depression, and increased relaxation. Furthermore, this herbal aphrodisiac may enhance feelings of euphoria and increase your physical and energetic sensations.
If you are using damiana to help increase your libido, prepare and drink the tea at least 30 minutes prior to sexual activity. Pour 2 cups of boiling water over 1 oz. of dried damiana leaves and allow to steep for 10 to 15 minutes. Strain the water off the leaves, add honey and enjoy. You can drink damiana tea up to three times daily.
According to "Healthy Beginnings Magazine," damiana contains arbutin, which is a glycoside compound. Your body converts arbutin to the chemical hydroquinone in your urinary tract. High concentrations of hydroquinone can cause negative side effects such as nausea, vomiting, ringing in your ears, seizures and, in severe cases, death. Avoid taking high doses of damiana tea. Furthermore, avoid taking damiana if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, and use caution if you have kidney or liver disease.
- "Alive: Canadian Journal of Health & Nutrition": It's Sexy Time;" May 2008
- "New Life Journal": Carolina Edition: Plants for Love;" Ashley Apple; 2002
- Living Naturally: Herb of the Month: Damiana
- Wellness International Network: Damiana as a Sex Enhancer
- "Healthy Beginnings Lifestyle Magazine": Damiana