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.
For men, try Fenugreek. Not only is it supposed to up libido, it’s supposed to make it taste like maple syrup! I’m game for that. *goes to t he health food store for some fenugreek for DH to take when he gets home*
This is a really interesting topic! i am experiencing a bit of perimenopause, bad circulation, or something, and have been trying a supplement with l-arginine, maca, gingko and Korean ginseng for a week or so. It’s supposed to take a while to work, so who knows. Yesterday i read about a thing called “FertileCM”, which is supposed to help prepare the body for conception? but they say it also has the side effect of raising the libido. Some of the ingredients there are l-arginine, and calcium, and i forget what else. I haven’t found that locally yet (not going to mail-order herbs as it is 110 degrees here in Oklahoma, and i think an extended stay in my mailbox would render it useless). I’ve heard of Horny Goat Weed (heh heh) and been on the fence about it because it’s always mentioned for men… but now i believe i will try it! Thanks for the article 🙂
p.s. the FertileCM is supposed to help out with dryness as well, which is something else i’m hoping to find a solution for. if it or anything else i try gives a noticeable result, i will repost here!
Although not exactly a ‘supplement’, I started taking bio-identical hormones since I was going through menopause, not feeling quite myself and had ZERO libido. These pills are only prescribed by a doctor willing to use a compounding pharmacy which are sadly very hard to find (although the pills CAN be shipped through the mail). My hormones were pretty much in the normal range, but I didn’t FEEL normal, so my doctor gladly prescribed the pills (they actually melt under the tongue). After a couple of months I told her I still felt the same so she increased the testosterone (yes, women need it too) and BAM! I was REALLY feeling the need for sex!!! Its been two years now and hubby and I have sex every day and twice a day at least half the week…I never knew how it felt to crave sex before; its WONDERFUL! Hubby is ecstatic and we’ve both never been happier!
With regards to receiving testosterone: is it by injection or is it taken orally each day? And, are there any side effects? i.e. increased hair growth etc.
Its actually a troche, a half circle pill, that melts under the tongue taken 2x/day made of .625mg bio-identical estrogen, 20mg progesterone and 2.5mg testosterone (with added spearmint flavor!). I didn’t want anything inserted under my skin every few months (not a shot), which was another option by a different doctor, so I chose the pill. I haven’t noticed much difference in odd hair growth (I already had a few strays on my chin) and, at 54, my arm and leg hairs had really decreased and those haven’t come back. Hope that helps 🙂