By Elisa Bosley
Certain healthy foods are traditionally considered aphrodisiacs, and what better time than Valentine's Day to try them? Add these aphrodisiac foods to your grocery cart, suggests the fortuitously named Melody Hart, ND, PhD, of ChicagoHealers.com.
Nuts and sesame seeds, says Hart, contain the amino acid L-arginine that enhances blood flow throughout the body. Try our nut-and-seed-laden Coconut Almond Crunch Granola.
Chocolate "releases pleasure-enhancing endorphins in the brain, plus contains the feel-good chemicals phenylethylamine and serotonin, released by the brain when you are happy or feeling loving or passionate," says Hart. These Chocolate Lava Cakes ought to do the trick.
The richest food source of zinc, which does good things for sperm, oysters also boost blood health with iron. Try one of my favorite Valentine's Day recipes, Warm Oysters on the Half Shell with Spicy Ponzu — it's easy, and a showstopper.
Licorice improves circulation, acts as a stress reliever, and has a stimulating smell, especially for women. Anise, an herb often mistaken for licorice because of the similar smell, adds a wonderful scent to these Anise-Orange Rye Rolls, perfect to serve with dinner. And look for Panda all-natural Licorice Chews at your natural foods store.
Capsaicin, the compound that makes peppers hot, increases circulation and releases feel-good endorphins. For a spicy and superhealthy vegetable dish, try Kale with Ginger and Chiles.
Check out even more libido-loving foods and get cooking!