Archive | July 2012

Libido Enhancing Supplements

I struggle with an extremely low sex drive.  My husband saw “Provestra” in an article or something.  Any of you familiar with this or have a better suggestion for a natural remedy?  I also think I have a hormonal imbalance so need that to improve to.

I want to preface this blog entry by saying that if there are spiritual or emotional issues that are causing your libido to be low, using supplements to “boost” your libido will not help or make things better.   Also, if you feel that you have hormonal imbalances, it is best to get your hormones checked by your PCP or your OBGYN before self diagnosing and self medicating.  If you are pregnant, you will want to do further research on which herbs are not recommended for you to take while pregnant and discuss any changes with your doctor.

I received this email from a reader who has a low sex drive.  I have had this problem in the past, and still do at times, so I thought it would be appropriate to do some research into the product that she spoke of, as well as doing some research at “The Vitamin Shoppe” and asking some questions to a friend who is very knowledgeable with herbs and what helps what when you take them.  This will be a culmination of the research I have done.  I HAVE NOT tried any of these products that I will discuss.  I WILL comment on things I am currently using.

First thing I did after reading the email was to Google Provestra and navigate around the website.  Provestra is a daily supplement designed to increase desire in women.   The site suggests that it will help enhance sensations, increase self lubrication, speed up arousal, and help a woman to have regular orgasms.   As I checked through the list of ingredients in the supplement, it looked like what you would find in a regular multivitamin (Vitamin A, C, E, B complex, Folic acid, calcium, iron and zinc) with supplemental herbs.  On their site, they have a money back guarantee if you feel that the product isn’t working for you, but you have to use it for 30 days and also consult their Customer Satisfaction Team before getting a full refund on your money when you return the unused product, but you do pay the return shipping cost.  ($15)

The list of ingredients was very long, so I emailed my friend about herbs that are aphrodisiacs.   I asked her to look at the Provestra list and tell me what she thought.  She told me that the ingredients in the product were pretty standard for women’s sexual health, but she was concerned about the use of red dye #3 and other additives that were listed on the bottom of the ingredient page.    She suggested the use of the following herbs …

Damiana is used to increase circulation to all parts of the body, especially the sexual organs.

Dong Quai helps with vaginal dryness and it relaxes the uterus.  It also helps cramping and symptoms of menopause.

Milk Thistle cleanses liver cells and controls endometritus.

She told me not to go cheap on these either, to make sure they were fresh, high quality herbs.

So after talking to my friend, I went on a fact finding mission to our local vitamin store, thus the trip to Vitamin Shoppe.   My husband had been there before and told me there was a whole section on Women’s Health.  Wow, that shop was overwhelming!  I did find the section on women’s health, and found a few other products there that also were also advertised as libido enhancers.  I found Natural Passion and Cleopatra there, and these both claim to help low sex drive, but ingredients were different in these as well.   The Dong Quai was the same in these as my friend recommended and the Cleopatra had both the Damiana and Dong Quai, along with other herbs as well.   Again, I haven’t tried ANY of these products, so I cannot say whether they work or not.

While doing the research on these drive boosting supplements, there were also pages on the internet that evaluated Provestra.   Women’s Health Weekly ranked Provestra #2 in its recommendations for women’s libido enhancers, 2nd place only to a product called HerSolution.   Provestra-reviews.com had this quote on the product “Relying completely on herbal extracts, it has been reviewed as not only one of the safest, but most effective supplements of its kind on the market today.”   But I went to my hubby’s trusty source for product satisfaction…amazon.com … and found some personal reviews from people who actually bought and used the products for at least 2 months.   “I  see now, 2 people, and now, add me as the 3rd, have rated this 1 star. It deserves ZERO stars.”; “If it worked, I couldn’t tell.”; “After taking this product for a month, I absolutely had no difference in drive or sensitivity. For the price this is not a good product at all. “; “Don’t waste your time or money on this product.”.  There was one positive comment on the Amazon page from a user. “I can’t say the effects have been as dramatic as the Provestra website claims, but my sex drive has definitely improved.”

What’s in my medicine cabinet?  I take a gummy multivitamin daily.  I take extra supplements of calcium, iron, B complex, B12, vitamin E, vitamin K (not in my multivitamin), zinc, Korean Ginseng, Gingko Biloba, and Horny Goat Weed.  I don’t know why, can’t explain it, but I always thought of Horny Goat Weed as a product for men, but it is working for me!   I take it in the morning to help me think about sex during the day, and I take it at night as well.  In about 20 minutes, it gets the circulation going in my clitoris and that gets me in the mood to make love.  Much to my hubby’s liking…   Hubby found me some articles online that say Horny Goat Weed is not just for men and erectile dysfunction, but also helps with circulation in the genitals for women as well.  It works for me!  Just a note that I did try the Dong Quai for a little over a month, and it didn’t really work well for me.  I am premenopausal, and I was really hopeful that it would help with my dryness.   It may work for you, but it didn’t really work for me.

I AM NOT PROPOSING THAT YOU BUY ANY OF THESE PRODUCTS.  I am trying to give some balanced information on the products.  Remember that any website that sells products wants them to sell, so they are going to put them in their best light.   Do the research before you purchase any products.   Some of these products DO have side effects even though the website says they don’t.  Every woman is different, so you want to be sure that you consult your doctor before you start adding things to your daily regime.  Remember, too, if you are suffering from low sex drive, it is not necessarily hormonal.  It may be hormonal, but it also may have emotional and spiritual ramifications as well, which any supplement will not help.  Take your issues to the Lord in prayer.  I did when I had these problems.   It took some time for me to get God’s answer…he was waiting on me to be ready for the truth.  God opened my eyes to the truth, and my awakening occurred.  My problems were not hormonal at that time.   Be sure you include God in all of your plans.  He knows your heart and when you open your heart to Him, he’ll open your eyes to the truth.

If my church offered a class on sex and marriage, I would be more than likely to….

Lord, Change Me Into the Likeness of Christ

Change is a hard thing.  We always think “I don’t need changing.  Change him!”  I was taking notes in a journal on the way to dinner this past weekend, and I noted that the journal I grabbed was an old prayer journal I started 2 years ago.   It only had 5 prayer entries in it.  Prayer for my mom (who had Non Hodgkins Lymphoma at the time), prayer for my FIL’s health, prayer for my MIL’s health, prayer for my Dad that God would protect his heart from Satan while helping Mom undergo her chemo, and finally prayer for my husband…. and that prayer entry went like this…. “Help me to accept DH the way he is and not try to change him.  I realize in some ways he may never change, but at the same time, I release him to change in ways I never thought he could.  I leave any changing that needs to be done in Your hands, fully accepting that neither of us is perfect, and never will be.   Only you, Lord, are perfect and I look to you to perfect us. “  Looks like I was reading Power of a Praying Wife at the time!

Changing ourselves is hard.  Really hard.   But if we look at it as changing us to be more like Christ, it can be easier.  I mean, as Christians, we should all strive to be more like Christ every day of our lives.  Living out the greatest commandment, to love one another.  Stormie listed seven ways to be more like Christ.   We can all learn something from these as well.

1.  Jesus was loving.  Jesus wants us to lay down out lives for others.  His love worked miracles and it can work miracles in our lives and those who we show love to.   My biggest problem?  showing love to my family when I come home from work.  I word so hard to show love for others at work that I don’t have a full “love tank” when I get home.  I need to work on that.

2.  Jesus was humble.  Humility is a rare commodity in our world today.  Look at Tim Tebow.   What a humble man, who gives all the glory to God in public for everything he does.  And he gets made fun of.  People are so into themselves in the world, that seeing someone who does act humbly makes them feel awkward, so they have to ridicule him.    Jesus was Lord of the Universe, yet he chose to come to earth as a mere mortal.  It takes someone really humble to give up everything Christ had in heaven.   Pray for a humble heart like our Lord’s.

3.  Jesus was faithful.  He was faithful all the way to the cross.   He never stumbled.   He knew why he was here.  We need to know all about his faithfulness, so that we can learn ourselves how to be faithful.

4.  Jesus was giving.   He gave his power to heal people.  He gave his time to anyone who would listen.  He gave his life to save the people he loved…all of us.   When we don’t feel that we have anything to give, God shows us what we have that we can give to others.    Pray for God to bestow upon you gifts in which you can share with others.

5.  Jesus was separate.   I like the way she put it… He was in the world, but not part of the world.   He came to touch the world, but never became like the world.  He was separate from the world, but he changed the world.   While we are in the world, we cannot lose sight of our goal.  This world is temporary.  We cannot become like the world because it won’t last.   Don’t lose sight of where you are going.  Keep eternity in your perspective.

6.  Jesus was obedient.  Jesus never did anything on his own.  He always prayed to the Father and waited on His Word.   We must be like that too.  We can be so impatient.  The world has made us that way.  If we wait on the Lord, we can be truly blessed.   We must be obedient to the Lord when he does give us instruction.   Jonas learned the hard way what happens when you aren’t obedient to the Lord.  He spent some time in the belly of a whale!   We need God’s help to learn to die to ourselves, so we can live for him.

7.  Jesus was light.  As a moth is attracted to the light, so must we be attracted to God’s light.   We should be the light to this dark world.   We need to be the light, so we can attract those out of the darkness to the light, to learn more about Jesus.   Let you light shine.

Pray that God would start a work in you, right now, as you read this.  Ask him to help you learn to be more like his Son.   Ask him to help you separate yourself from the world and be a light to all who would see it.   Pray to learn how to be humble and be a servant to all as Jesus was.  Pray for faithfulness, obedience, and a giving spirit.   Pray that you will be a person that people see and want to learn more about Jesus because of the way you live your life.  Keep your eyes on Jesus and eternity.  We are only here for a short while.