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10 Libido boosting foods according to Chinese medicine

Trying to spice up your sex life? You can start in the plate!

Chinese medicine is often wrongly misunderstood for killing wild animals to seek aphrodisiacs. I have never seen such substances prescribed in the 7 years I was there, and 2 years in a hospital, seeing hundreds of patients every day.

However, aphrodisiacs properties are given to many foods, so let's take a look !

Libido in Chinese medicine

Causes of a decreased sex drive

  • Stress & anxiety, Depression

  • Childbirth

  • Weight gain

  • Aging

  • Hormone imbalance (eg: low testosterone)

  • Insomnia

Tonifying Kidneys & Heart

A lot of our sexual and reproductive functions belong to the realm of the Kidneys for Chinese medicine. Of course with a complete consultation with your acupuncturist, you could goo deeper and into more detail.

  • Lack of arousal: Kidney Yin deficiency (not enough fluids)

  • Lack of libido: Kidney and heart deficiency

Best aphrodisiac foods


As an ocean creature, oysters are considered yin-boosting aphrodisiacs. They are also high in vitamin B12 and protein.


Another ocean delicacy, shrimp has a more warming nature than oysters, and are more yang tonics

Sea Cucumbers

The evocative shape of this prickly soft critter helps in its reputation as a great tonic and aphrodisiac.

Sea cucumber has salty and warm properties, and is associated with the Heart and Kidney meridians. It is used to treat fatigue, impotence, constipation, frequent urination, and joint pain.

It is also a rich source of chondroitin sulfate, commonly used for arthritis


As a blood and yin tonic, eggs are also ascending in nature and have been used in the prevention of miscarriage.


Typically raised with far fewer antibiotics and allowed to graze on grass, this is an excellent choice for red meat lovers, especially for its kidney warming qualities.


Warm and pungent in flavor, chives act on the kidneys as a tonic & specifically target sexual function. They also improve qi circulation, which is a huge benefit to your pelvic region in general.


Walnuts are used for brain health, fertility and sex life, thanks to their kidney yang enhancing nature. An old Chinese folk remedy for impotence was to eat 20 walnuts a day for a month.

As with most nuts and its healthy fat content, Chinese Medicine believes that fats act as a lubricant and it has the function of "lubricating the intestines"

Lentils & beans

Legumes increases the vitality of the kidneys and is stimulating to the adrenal system. Black beans especially. See our article here on black foods for kidney health.


This deliciously meaty nut is both nourishing to the energy of the kidneys and helps stimulate the liver out of stagnation (because we all have stuck energy in there).


Dried ginger is said to direct the properties of foods and herbs to the lower region and sexual organs, making it an excellent spice accompaniment to your amorous meal.

Supplements that may help


It works for everyone because it boosts blood flow through the genitals. In pill form or by applying cream directly on the genitals, take your pick.


Low levels of iron or folate can make you too tired for sex.

Of course, you can also talk to your acupuncturist for a customized herbal formula !

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