Celebrated as the most romantic day of the year, Valentine's Day brings with it flowers, candies, cookies, chocolates, cupid, candlelight and love. Our romantic fantasies may begin with Cupid and Roses, but somehow they always seem to end with luscious food, because no celebration is complete without delicious food, and perhaps some alcohol! It is probably a universal belief that certain food and beverages can act as strong aphrodisiacs due to certain chemicals they release in our bodies, as chocolate has been proven to do. But most of the times they excite many of our senses through a combination of taste, texture and appearance. The shape of some foods is highly associated with arousal in humans. But whatever may be the reason, it's always a good idea to familiarize yourself with some foods that can act as aphrodisiacs, and as Valentine's Day is around the corner, whether you are planning a romantic dinner or looking for gift ideas, here's something that will keep you right on track! (img source)
Chocolate - Legend says that the Mayan civilization worshipped chocolate, believing it was "food for the Gods." Scientists have studied this candy, and found that chocolate releases serotonin and phenylethylamine, chemicals which make people feel blissful. Some researchers also claim that chocolate may affect the brain the way marijuana does, putting the consumer in a state of temporary euphoria.
Alcohol - This one is a no-brainer as we all know how spirits can make us a little tipsy and let you feel high. The magic of champagnes and wines can best be attributed to their ability to lower one's inhibitions, and create a head-rush.
Bananas - Rich in potassium and Vitamin B, bananas are a feel-good food. They also increase blod sugar instantaneously. So warm bananas served as a light dessert with whip cream or sauce can be a great choice for Valentie's Day!
Oysters - Because of their shape, oysters have thought to have been aphrodisiacs for thousands of years. They are known to be high in zinc, which has been associated with improving sexual potency in men. Back in old days, both men and women ate raw oysters, believing that doing so would increase both arousal and fertility.
Chillies/Spicy Food - Chillies can literally add "spice" to your life! These invigorating spices has an exotic reputation and can stimulate endorphins, which in turn, can really turn you on. (But moderation is the key; don't start eating raw chillies or you could end up with an ulcer!!)
Honey - Honey is made through pollination and is a symbol of procreation. The word "honeymoon" got its name from mead, an alcoholic beverage made from honey, which was given to the happy couple. This pure form of sugar can sure prove to be handy as you plan your romantic meals!
Fennel - In the 1930's fennel was found to be a source of natural plant estrogens. Use of fennel as an aphrodisiac dates back to the Egyptian times where it was used as "libido enhancement".
Ginger and Garlic - Extremely strange, but true! Both these spices have been known to increase blood circulation, and hence libido. But make sure to brush your teeth or use a mouth freshner later or you might not get the response you anticipated!:)
Vanilla - This age-old bean is said to induce passion due t its erotic scent and fragrance. Using fresh vanilla beans seems to heighten both the flavor and the desire!
Raspberries and Strawberries - Perfect foods for hand feeding your lover, both these luscious fruits are high in vitamin C and make a sweet light dessert. They also pair the best with chocolates and champagne!
There is no scientific claim or tests that prove any of this to be true, and yet people like to believe in Aphrodisiacs. Does it really work? You can find some basic theory and explanation here. As for me, I say that ultimately, its our feelings and the company of a loved one which makes any occasion special. True, some foods can effectively change our hormonal levels, and hence put us in a buoyant mood. Some say it's just in our heads! Well, it really doesn't matter; as long as you have love in your life, any day is Valentine's Day, and any food can be an Aphrodisiac!
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