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Falvonoids Help Address: Poor Circulation

Fun fact: Viagra was originally developed to combat high blood pressure. It helps enhance dilation of the blood vessels by increasing both the levels and activity of nitric oxide, a compound in the body that relaxes blood vessels and improves blood flow. As the drug’s developers discovered, enhanced blood flow also has a potent effect on the genitals during sexual arousal, particularly in men — though it contributes to stimulation and ­sensitivity in women too.

Flavonoids are natural chemicals in berries, citrus fruits, tea, and dark chocolate that enhance and regulate nitric oxide. Some of the best-known include quercetin, resveratrol, and luteolin. These compounds help protect plants from pests, and “when we ingest these compounds, they can help protect us too,” says naturopathic physician and licensed acupuncturist Laurie Steelsmith, ND, MS, LAc, coauthor of Great Sex, Naturally.

“Flavonoids help to stabilize blood-vessel walls and promote scaffolding of the cells,” she adds. There are lots of reasons to emphasize colorful veggies and fruits in your diet, but getting the blood pumping during amorous moments may be one of the most fun.

How to Supplement With Flavonoids:

The best sources of flavonoids include tea, cocoa, leafy vegetables, onions, apples, berries, cherries, soybeans, and citrus fruits.

Flavonoids such as resveratrol, quercetin, curcumin, EGCG (epigal­locatechin gallate), and luteolin are also available as individual supplements and in bioflavonoid blends. A functional nutritionist can help design meal plans that contain a variety of flavonoids.

This was excerpted from “How to Use Nutrition to Improve Your Libido” which was published in Experience Life.

Mo Perry

Mo Perry is an Experience Life contributing editor.

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