20 Foods That Increase Your Sexual Stamina and Sex Drive
There are certain things you definitely don't want to last very long—like dentist appointments, visits with the in-laws, and hangovers. Something that would never top that list? Sex. When you hit the sheets with your significant other or a new flame, the last thing you want is to finish too soon.
Although no one wants to be a minuteman, research shows that you don't have to go all night to please your partner either. A study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine study reports that the average time couples spend bumpin' and grindin' ranges from three to 13 minutes. Other research reveals that most women want "sexy time" to last between 15 and 25 minutes—not for hours like some people might think. Regardless, nothing bad can come from going at it a bit longer!
Believe it or not, there are a few foods that can potentially help you improve your stamina in the bedroom. Below, we've detailed 20 examples so you have plenty of options to work with. And after, don't miss the 15 Underrated Weight Loss Tips That Actually Work.
Watermelon is one of the richest natural sources of L-citrulline, a non-essential amino acid that your body converts to L-arginine in your body. And it's the L-arginine that can help make your erection, well for lack of better words, harder. Like that little blue pill, L-arginine stimulates the production of nitric oxide, which increases blood flow to the penis, strengthening erections.
Get your mentality on the same page as your body by adding some serrano peppers to a stir fry, jalapenos to guacamole, or cayenne pepper to your eggs. Why all the pepper? Each fruit contains a significant amount of capsaicin, the compound that makes Tabasco sauce hot, releases chemicals that increase heart rate, mirrors signs of arousal, and releases feel-good endorphins, according to NPR. The bottom line? Munching on these spicy foods won't only boost your metabolism, they will get you in the mood for the evening's festivities and increase your duration in the sack, too. To rev your calorie-burning furnace some more, don't miss these best ways to boost your metabolism.
An apple a day doesn't just keep the doctor away; it may also help to extend your sexual stamina. It's all thanks to apples' high levels of quercetin, an antioxidant flavonoid that has been found to play a role in improving endurance. And since your body goes through many of the same physical changes during sex as it does during exercise—elevated heart rate, increased metabolism, burned calories, and muscle contractions—you can equate endurance with extending your time in bed. According to nutritionist Sarah-Jane Bedwell, RD, LDN, author of Schedule Me Skinny: Plan to Lose Weight and Keep It Off in Just 30 Minutes a Week, quercetin "can help to create new mitochondria in the body's cells and increase one's oxidative capacity, which signifies the maximum amount of oxygen your muscles can use." That's not all. Quercetin can also help prevent the release of cortisone, which causes muscle breakdown, meaning you'll be able to go at it longer without experiencing premature fatigue.
If you like your food like you like your lovers—sweet and spicy—you're in luck. Ginger is another food that can improve your sex life by aiding blood flow and improving artery health. According to a study in the International Journal of Cardiology, consuming a mere teaspoon of the stuff a few times a week is all you need to reap the heart-healthy benefits. So, go ahead and place that second order of sushi this week—just don't leave the ginger on your plate.
Trying to heat things up after your dinner date? Be sure to order the wild salmon. The fish is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids, which aid nitric oxide production, according to a study in the journal Food & Function, helping you stay hard. Plus, additional research has found that cutting back calories and sticking to a Mediterranean-style diet rich in produce, fish, whole grains, and healthy fats (like omega-3s) can improve erectile function in men with metabolic syndrome, according to an International Journal of Impotence Research study.
The sexual innuendo may also help you prepare for evening festivities. That's because this tropical fruit is full of simple carbs to provide you with energy and potassium to help you keep going. The muscle-relaxing mineral prevents cramps and muscle spasms that may impede your sexy time. Plus, the American Heart Association says that potassium can help lower blood pressure, which can boost sexual performance by ensuring proper blood flow to certain parts of the body, including the genitals.
And don't miss 20 Healthiest Foods That Lower Blood Pressure.
If you want to go long enough to help your date reach the big-O (hint: you should), reach for some oatmeal. The popular breakfast grain offers a rich source of the all-important amino acid, which is commonly used to treat erectile dysfunction. Plus, whole grains like oatmeal also help lower cholesterol levels, as shown by an American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine review.
Having high cholesterol can lead to atherosclerosis, a condition that clogs and narrows arteries, impairing blood flow. This could eventually lead to heart problems, but you'll likely notice issues below the belt first. The arteries surrounding the genital area are narrower than coronary blood vessels, so they're more susceptible to clots. Simply put: the better your cholesterol levels are, the better your erection will be, too. So, start your day with these overnight oats recipes.
According to historians, ancient Egyptians used garlic to boost their stamina. A Journal of Nutrition study confirmed that consuming garlic extract can help stop the formation of new fatty deposits, called plaque, inside arterial walls. Yes, that includes the arteries leading to your penis, too. Keep your heart healthy and your erections strong by adding some garlic to your weekly dishes. But bear in mind that garlic won't make your breath smell particularly seductive—so keep it out of your date-night diet.
To ensure you can last as long as your partner desires when the time comes, add some nuts to your diet. Pistachios, peanuts, and walnuts all contain the amino acid L-arginine, which is one of the building blocks of nitric oxide—a naturally occurring gas that helps guys maintain their erections. These nuts are also high in magnesium, which boosts energy and endurance.
Consider swapping out your dinner roll for a side of quinoa if you're looking for ways to last longer in the bedroom. Not only is quinoa one of the few plant-based sources of complete protein, but it's also one of the top high-fiber foods. Because it takes your body a longer time to digest fiber, eating these nutrient-dense foods provides your body with more long-lasting energy levels so you can go the distance.
For a quick energy boost, look no further than vitamin B12. The micronutrient is connected to optimal mental function and high energy because it helps maintain the health of your nerves, brain, and red blood cells. According to a Harvard study published in the New England Journal of Medicine, typical vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms include a trio of ailments that spell out bad news for the bedroom: fatigue, low libido (including erectile dysfunction), and weakness.
Luckily, one of the top five sources of the micronutrient is one you're likely already eating: canned tuna. Pop open a can and top off a slice of whole-grain bread or your salad with this cheap fish that ranks on our list of best proteins for weight loss.
A study published in the International Journal of Impotence Research discovered that pomegranate juice, rich in antioxidants that support blood flow, can help improve erectile dysfunction. Though this study was funded by POM Wonderful, animal studies have also shown that the elixir improves long-term erectile response, so it's definitely worth a shot–literally. Knock a shot back or water your juice down a bit: One cup of tart POM Wonderful packs 34 grams of sugar.
Nitrates will help increase overall blood flow, which is not only good for "down there" but also beneficial for your mind. In a recent Physiology & Behavior study, adult participants were given a dose of beet juice and then performed a selection of cognitive tasks. The researchers discovered that the beet juice measurably improved blood flow to their brains and improved cognitive performance. The secret power of these roots? Nitrates, which are found in beets and converted into nitrite in the body.
The secret spinach and increased sexual stamina? Its high arginine content. When this amino acid hits your system, it converts to nitric oxide, which helps initiate and maintain erections. Need another reason to add some green to your plate? Nitric oxide may also help speed muscle growth and recovery time, according to a Molecular Biology of the Cell study.
Your anxiety about getting between-the-sheets could be elevating levels of stress—which plummet libido and could get in the way of a longer sex session. That's not all. A lack of B-vitamins—nutrients that keep nerves and brain cells healthy—could also be exaggerating your stress even further, says a Nutrition Journal study. The solution? Feast on some guac. Not only are avocados rich in stress-relieving B vitamins, but they're also a source of monounsaturated fat, which has been shown to aid blood flow to the entire body—including the penis—by a Journal of Hypertension study.
Ever heard the adage that running is 90 percent mental and only 10 percent physical? Well, the same can be said for sex. To make sure your brain is mentally in the game, cultivate a keen sense of focus by loading up on folate. This B vitamin helps maintain levels of oxygen in our blood and produces healthy cells. It's known to aid in focus, energy, and alertness. Asparagus is one of the best sources of folate in our diets—just 6 spears provides you with a third of your recommended daily intake.
Now you have another excuse to order the steak. When it comes to boosting—and maintaining—your libido, niacin (Vitamin B3) is especially helpful. A Journal of Sexual Medicine study found that men suffering from impotence who took a niacin supplement reported a significant improvement in their bedroom performance than men who took a placebo. Just 3 ounces of beef will serve up 30 percent of your daily recommended intake.
Thanks to their prime ratio of protein, healthy fats, and fiber, chia seeds give you stable energy since they won't cause spikes and drops in blood sugar or insulin levels. The last thing you want is for your evening to be ruined because you're feeling hungry and fatigued.
Pumpkin seeds are nutritional superstars and the killer wingman. You can thank their sources of zinc and magnesium: two essential minerals shown to boost testosterone levels, especially when combined, found an International Journal of Endocrinology study. The magnesium, specifically, decreases inflammation in blood vessels, which then increases blood flow and, subsequently, arousal.
Experts estimate that stress and performance anxiety account for up to 20% of all erection problems. Rather than letting you and your partner down because you're down in the dumps, consider eating foods that can counteract stress—like dark chocolate. According to researchers, cacao increases levels of the mood-boosting hormone serotonin. In one 30-day trial, participants who consumed a daily chocolate drink reported feeling calmer than subjects who didn't sip the beverage.