Veterinarian Reviewed on June 14, 2012 by Paulina Nelega, RH
Posted in Uncategorized
Damiana herb (Turnera diffusa) is a small shrub with beautiful, yellow, aromatic blossoms. It is abundant in the regions of Central and South America, specifically in Mexico. The Damiana herb can still be found in the wild, although many Damiana herbs that are used in medicinal preparations are now grown in ranches or farms.
The leaves of the Damiana herb are used dried or fresh as an aphrodisiac. Research has also shown that Damiana herb may also be used to increase sperm count in males and to significantly increase the count and strength of eggs in females. The Damiana herb also has anti depressant properties by increasing mood, affect and elicit a positive well being.
History and Origin
In Southern America, the Damiana herb is a part of the local culture where it is used as a powerful aphrodisiac. The tribes drank Damiana herb tea to increase virility and sexual prowess. It is often ground and mixed with warm water plus a little sugar to make it more flavorful and pleasant.
Origins of the Damiana herb dates back to the Spanish missionaries’ arrival in Mexico. They have recorded specific accounts of Mexican Indians drinking Damiana herb tea in celebrations and festivities as an aphrodisiac.
During ancient times, when the Spanish missionaries first landed in Mexico, they have noticed native Mexican Indians use Damiana herb as a drink or tea to promote sexual potency. Aside from this benefit, it has also been used to relieve anxiety, restlessness and symptoms of mild depression. Some tribes also use Damiana herb as an herbal tonic to promote overall health and wellness.
The effect of Damiana herb as a laxative was also recorded plus uses for certain gastrointestinal illness such as constipation. The Damiana herb was also used to treat cough as an expectorant and as an astringent.
Damiana herb is basically used as an aphrodisiac. Increased sperm count, increase sex drive, virility and increased energy has been the effect in men while increased egg count, egg strength, increased sex drive and increased libido are the effect in women.
Aside from its aphrodisiac properties of Damiana herb it helps boost overall mood, correct hormonal imbalances which is often common in menopausal women, increase energy and may also be used to treat central nervous system disorders.
Although the Damiana herb is widely accepted as an aphrodisiac, how this is possible is still not known. The relaxing effect of the herb is mild unlike effects of Cannabis which may also lead to dependence and addiction.
Experts note that Damiana herb is safe in regular doses. Long term effect of taking Damiana herb has not been explored. There have been studies about the abortive effects of this herb and therefore it is cautioned for pregnant women. Damiana herb may also react with medications such as diabetes medications or insulin plus it has also been noted that the herb may also retard the body’s ability to absorb elemental iron and thus iron and hemoglobin levels must be closely monitored while using it.
If you would like to use Damiana herb for its medicinal and aphrodisiac effects, ask your doctor if you have a preexisting illness. Your medications may react with Damiana herb so it is best to consult a doctor before hand.
Paulina Nelega, RH, has been in private practice as a Clinical Herbalist for over 15 years. She has developed and taught courses in herbal medicine, and her articles on health have appeared in numerous publications. She is very passionate about the healing power of nature. Ask Dr. Jan