Sex and Nutrition: Fuel the fire for desire

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(WomensFitnessFocus.com) Robert J Sternberg, professor of psychology and education at Yale University, was one of the first modern researchers to investigate and develop a model of love. After studying successful loving relationships, Sternberg put together a love triangle (no, not that kind of triangle). Sternberg’s love triangle represented ‘complete’ love and consisted of an equal sided triangle having a commitment side, an intimacy side and a passion side.

Sternberg described complete love as something we should all strive for – a love that encompassed a short term decision to love someone and a long term decision to maintain that loving relationship (commitment), closeness, sharing, communication and support (intimacy), and of course, physical arousal, the sexual aspect of any loving relationship (passion). A relationship in which one of these sides is very small or lacking may be, according to Sternberg, in danger, although our triangles are constantly changing in shape.

Think about your relationships. What would your triangle look like? If you’re like many people, the passion side is way to short. Oh, it’s not that you don’t try. You get home early so that you and your mate can have a little more time together, you help around the house so the chores are done earlier, etc. But chances are that one of you is going to be too tired.

You may have tried everything you could think of to add a bit more passion to your relationship, but by the time 10 o’clock rolls around all your good intentions are forgotten – you realize that there’s nothing you want to do more than sleep. But you figure your relationship will survive. It just has to be this way for now. Or does it?

Did you consider that your nutrition may have something to do with the way you feel – at night or anytime? Nutrition related to sex? Of course. Just as nutrition is related to any aspect of physical performance.

What to Try

Here are a few ideas to help you become more passionate when it counts.

Protein for Carbs

As a bodybuilder, you probably are already focused on getting adequate protein intake, but here’s something else you should know. Protein will arouse you. Sure, you know that protein will jump your metabolic rate up just as a consequence of its difficult and complex digestion. Although that’s true, that’s not what I mean.

You see, our brain operates on signals that are transmitted by brain chemicals. Many of these brain chemicals are formed from amino acids (tyrosine, etc). So when we ingest a good amount of protein, these neurotransmitters are formed and brain function is stimulated – maybe just a bit, but it’s stimulated nonetheless (and most athletes will tell you that’s its noticeable). We feel more alert and ready for action.

Carbs, on the other hand, are sedative. A meal high in carbohydrates will make you drowsy – a consequence of a sharp rise in blood glucose, followed by a rapid decline. Clearly, one should eat both carbs and protein at an evening meal. However, you might want to try switching a bit more chicken for the extra helping of pasta. It just may help.

Calories, Carbs and Water

A diet that’s too low in calories, carbs or water will also affect a person’s emotional state. If you’re dieting, remember that calories are the last thing you should drop (the first is fat). Carbs are energy foods and a drastic reduction in calories and carbs will play havoc with your energy levels.

Water is your most critical nutrient. If you’re not replenishing your fluid stores after a workout, you’re just not going to feel muscularly ready for anything. All in all, a diet too low in these constituents will make a person grouchy and tired.

Watch the Fat

Fats depress your metabolism. They slow you down. A high fat diet can lead to the buildup of plague inside critical blood vessels and obstruct normal blood flow. Adequate blood flow to the genitals is an important aspect of the sexual response. For good sexual and overall health, limit your intake of fatty red meats, nuts and whole milk products.

Nutrition Stress Connection

Often a lack of libido can be traced to excessive stress. This may be remedied nutritionally. Ensure adequate intake of vitamins B1, B2, B3, and C – perhaps with a good supplement. Also, you may want to try a small glass of wine at night. Not only has light to moderate alcohol consumption been linked to good health, but this may just be the thing to loosen you up, reduce inhibitions and make you feel more amorous.

Boost Iron Intake

Some studies have linked iron intake to alertness. You may find that an iron supplement might help you if you are not a big meat or green vegetable eater. By drinking a glass of orange juice along with iron enriched foods, you’ll absorb more iron.

Chocolate?

Many anecdotal reports have suggested that chocolate has aphrodisiac qualities. Some researchers have suggested that chocolate stimulates endorphin release. Although this has not been substantiated, reports are so pervasive that it’s worth a try. Perhaps just as important as all the above is that you and your mate eat together and communicate. Getting in touch with the intimacy side of the triangle often makes the passion side much more meaningful.

What you eat affects your performance and how you feel. Don’t let poor nutrition ruin the passion in your relationship. Try some of the things outlined above. You’ll certainly feel more alive and be aroused. And that alone will go a long way to arousing your partner.

By Sandra Prior, Expert Articles.

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