Case Studies: Natural remedies for lack of sexual interest in men

Christopher Hobbs relates his experience in natural remedies for men's lack of sexual interest and his recommendations for increased desire.

| May/June 2001

It is not surprising that one of the most frequently asked questions about herbs is also about one of the most popular human activities—sex. Through the ages, people have ardently sought aphrodesiac herbs thought to increase sexual desire and energy. A lack of sexual interest or a loss of desire can sometimes be a very troubling problem, especially for men in our Western culture.  In my clinic I have had twenty-something-year-olds who are at a time of life when an abundant supply of hormones should be naturally flowing without any outside help, yet they ask me about ginseng and other herbs to increase sexual desire. It seems no matter how much desire and capacity one has for sex, many people still want more. In the Middle Ages, the Chinese and Persians wrote entire books on natural remedies for increased sexual function and performance, and the interest has not lessened today. In this column I will discuss men’s herbal programs for better sexual vitality; the next column will deal with women’s herbs and sexual issues.

Frank’s case

One patient of mine, Frank, fifty-five, began our session by telling me about his lack of interest in generally pleasurable activities such as gardening and dancing and eventually got around to his complete lack of sexual desire. He told me that he went through a long period in his teens and twenties when he was very sexually active, but since turning forty-five, his interest had been nonexistent, and he was experiencing quite a bit of fatigue.

As we talked, I found that Frank’s voice was low and did not have much force. Additionally, his kidney pulse was very weak and “thready.” According to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), the pulse in this position is an indicator of the balance of all the hormones. I felt Frank’s hands, and they were cold. His tongue looked slightly purple and pale—signs of stagnation and weakness of blood or simply a condition of coldness. He had also been experiencing lower back pain, another sign of kidney (or hormone) weakness.

Frank obviously was deficient in important factors that would support not only his sexuality but the potential for achieving happiness and success within his entire life. His disharmonious process was not on the surface, as it is when one catches a cold; it was deeply seated and had been created over many years of overwork, worry, and inability to digest and assimilate nutrients, including spiritual and emotional nutrients that create a strong center from which to express one’s sexuality.

Although I’m an herbalist and focus on herbal remedies, I also pay attention to the emotional, hereditary, and relationship issues involved in each person’s story. Some studies suggest that up to 70 percent of men’s sexual issues are actually related to these factors and have less to do with an actual physical pathology. However, after a man reaches the age of fifty, he is more likely to have some form of cardiovascular disease, which can mean blocked arteries with some reduced blood flow to the sexual organs.

Dietary change and herbs

For Frank, the course of action was obvious, at least from a TCM perspective—to build up his blood, vital energy, and vital substances, including hormones. Also, he needed to take the appropriate herbs and eat a powerfully nourishing diet, because protein deficiency can contribute to a lack of sexual fitness. He was eating little meat but tried to be conscious about eating some form of protein daily such as nuts, seeds, egg whites, fish, and a little lowfat dairy. Frank’s idea of vegetables was mashed potatoes, so I recommended at least one serving of green leafy vegetables such as collard greens, kale, or chard daily to help build up his blood and supply necessary minerals. I recommended specific vitamins and minerals that support sexual function, such as zinc, copper, and selenium. Because I suspected that Frank was yang deficient, and two of his major symptoms were coldness and decreased sexual drive, I wanted to give him herbs that would increase body heat and improve digestive fire, while helping him build more hormones. Here is Frank’s “yang-ifying” formula, which can help men or women of a similar disposition or with yang deficiency.

Subscribe today and save 58%

Subscribe to Mother Earth Living !

Mother Earth LivingWelcome to Mother Earth Living, the authority on green lifestyle and design. Each issue of Mother Earth Living features advice to create naturally healthy and nontoxic homes for yourself and your loved ones. With Mother Earth Living by your side, you’ll discover all the best and latest information you want on choosing natural remedies and practicing preventive medicine; cooking with a nutritious and whole-food focus; creating a nontoxic home; and gardening for food, wellness and enjoyment. Subscribe to Mother Earth Living today to get inspired on the art of living wisely and living well.

Save Money & a Few Trees!

Pay now with a credit card and take advantage of our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. You’ll save an additional $5 and get six issues of Mother Earth Living for just $19.95! (Offer valid only in the U.S.)

Or, choose Bill Me and pay just $24.95.

Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube Twitter

Free Product Information Classifieds