Sex and Salvia
By David Jay Brown
Salvia divinorum is a rare species of sage that is native to a remote region of Oaxaca, Mexico, where it has been used for hundreds of years in shamanic healing rituals by the Mazatec Indians. When the leaves of the plant are chewed or smoked, a relatively short-acting psychedelic or visionary experience generally follows. In large enough doses, salvia divinorum is one of the most powerful psychedelic substances known, similar to ayahausca in its effects.
In smaller doses, however, salvia divinorum is said to have aphrodisiac effects, to increase sensual awareness, and to dramatically enhance one’s tactile sensitivity during sex.
Although the Mazatec curanderas cautiously suggest that people abstain from sex for four days prior to using salvia divinorum, the origin of this advice is unknown. I suspect that this belief may have resulted from a Catholic influence on the Indians rather than any actual problem with mixing sex and salvia divinorum.
Most people that I’ve spoken to say that the most effective way to use salvia divinorum for sex is as a sublingual extract that one holds under one’s tongue for fifteen minutes. This method ensures that one is getting precisely the dosage that he or she intends, and it lengthens the duration of the experience. Smoked salvia divinorum generally lasts around fifteen minutes, while the sublingual salvia divinorum extracts last closer to an hour. With regard to dosage, preparations differ in strength, but one should aim for a “mild” or “moderate” level experience.
Salvia divinorum has been used for hundreds years by the Mazatec curanderas of Oaxaca and it appears to be quite safe–at least
physiologically–although very little scientific research has actually been done with it. We know that the primary psychoactive component in salvia divinorum–salvinorin A–acts as a selective kappa opioid agonist in the brain. Although salvia divinorum appears to be biochemically safe from toxicology studies, some people find larger doses to be psychologically unsettling, or even terrifying, so people are advised to thoroughly educate themselves about this powerful shamanic plant before experimenting with it.
It is legal to possess salvia divinorum–as well as its primary psychoactive component salvinorin A–in most countries, including the United States–with the exception of Louisiana, Missouri, Tennessee, and Delaware. Salvia divinorum extracts are available in most head shops and even some health food stores.
Salvia Divinorum can be ordered through a number of Web sites. Daniel Siebert’s www.sagewisdom.org is one of the best sources of information on salvia divinorum and he sells a sublingual extract called “Sage Goddess Emerald Essence,” that is probably the best salvia product on the internet for sexual purposes. Using salvia divinorum requires careful preparation and it should never be done without first educating one self about the possible dangers.
Sex and Cabergoline
by David Jay Brown
Cabergoline is a fairly new pharmaceutical that has enormous potential to aid male stamina. Perhaps the most remarkable aspect of carbergoline is that it has been found to substantially raise a man’s chances of sustaining multiple orgasms during sex. Some men on cabergoline are able to have numerous multiple orgasms in rapid succession.
Cabergoline, which is marketed under the trade name of Dostinex, is used to treat Parkinson’s disease, to prevent women producing milk when they want to stop breast feeding, and to lower prolactin levels in patients with a pituitary tumor. It is also sometimes used to help men with sexual dysfunction.
It is cabergoline’s capacity to lower prolactin levels that makes it such a sexual wonder drug for men. Prolactin is a single-chain protein hormone, closely related to growth hormone, that stimulates the secretion of milk of women. The hormone also has the effect of reducing a man’s desire for more sex by preventing new erections. Cabergoline has been found to to minimize the effects of the hormone prolactin, which is produced by men at the point of orgasm. As a result, some subjects who tried the drug found that they were able to have multiple orgasms in rapid succession.
In one study, 60 subjects, all healthy males, between the ages of 22 and 31, normally needed a break of 19 minutes between lovemaking sessions. However, after taking Cabergoline, they were able to have several orgasms within a few minutes. Medical psychologist Manfred Schedlowski, who was involved in the trials at Essen in Germany, said the drug raised the libido to enable the male to orgasm again more quickly.
Schedlowski said, “We saw that prolactin rises after orgasm and then thought maybe prolactin is a negative feedback system. Subjects who took this drug had decreased prolactin levels, and reported their orgasm was better and there was a shorter refractory period. We interviewed these subjects and found they were able to have multiple orgasms in very rapid succession. This is sitting very nicely with our hypothesis that orgasms and sexual drive are steered by prolactin and dopamine in the brain.”
Cabergoline was reported to have no side effects on men during the tests, according to a paper that was published in the International Journal of Impotence Research. However, there may be a drawback. There’s evidence that the release of prolactin in the brain, which surges during orgasm, promotes the growth of new neurons in the brain–a process called neurogenesis. Researchers at the University of Cal-gary discovered that the release of prolactin spurs the growth of new brain cells in the front regions of the brain involved in smell. So Cabergoline may allow men to have multiple orgasms at the expense of less brain growth. Sounds like a tough call to me.
Researchers are carrying out trials to investigate whether Cabergoline will have similar effects on women. Some anecdotal reports suggest that the drug has the potential to enhance the intensity of orgasms in both men and women.
Sex and Uprima
by David Jay Brown
Uprima (Apomorphine Hydrochloride) is a prescription drug that enhances a man’s ability to achieve and maintain an erection about as reliably as Viagra, yet most men in America don’t know about it because it’s used primarily in Europe.
Uprima is a chemical relative of morphine, although it has no morphine-like effects, and is, in fact, a stimulant. It was developed as a treatment for Parkinson’s Disease, but, early on, it became clear that it might have other uses after many of the Parkinson’s patients began getting erections when they received the drug. Marketed in Europe under the trade name Uprima, it is now widely prescribed by physicians in Europe as an effective treatment for male erectile dysfunction (ED) or impotence.
Uprima was the first oral therapy to be approved by the European Commission for the treatment of ED, and although Uprima has not yet been approved for sale in the United States, U.S. residents are legally allowed to order a (up to 3 month) personal supply of the drug from European pharmacies because it is not a controlled substance, and it meets the FDA Medication Import Policy guidelines.
Uprima is a type of drug known as a dopamine receptor agonist, and it works differently than Viagra does to facilitate erections. (Dopamine is an excitatory neurotransmitter, a chemical that causes excitement in the brain.) Viagra works by enhancing the effect of a chemical in the body called Nitric Oxide, which effects the vascular system, and temporarily widens arteries, thus increasing blood flow to the penis.
Uprima acts through the dopamine receptors in the mid-brain, and a part of the brain called the hypothalamus, which is the region responsible for initiating erections. When Uprima stimulates the hypothalamus, it inhibits the body’s smooth muscle contractions, and this allows for more blood to enter the penis, so erections occur easier and more frequently.
However, like Viagra, Uprima will only work to facilitate erections when sexual stimulation is present. It does not increase sex drive and it is not an aphrodisiac.
In recent studies, Uprima produced erections in men with erectial dysfunction about as reliably as Viagra (between 70 and 90 percent of the time), and it has been clinically shown to help men achieve an erection two to three times faster than Viagra. Uprima starts acting within 15 to 30 minutes (around 20 minutes on average), while Viagra usually takes between 30 minutes and an hour.
This is because Uprima tablets are taken sublingually–that is, they dissolve under the tongue. Viagra, on the other hand, is swallowed as a pill, which takes longer to enter the blood stream. Because of the sublingual mode of delivery, one of the benefits to using Uprima over Viagra–besides the fact that it works faster–is that you can take it after eating, without lessening the effects of the drug.
Like Viagra, Uprima shouldn’t be used by people with hypertension or heart problems. In clinical trials, the most commonly reported adverse reactions to Uprima were nausea, headache and dizziness, which were said to be generally mild and transient in nature.
Sex and Tribulus
by David Jay Brown
Tribulus terrestris is a shrub with a spiny burr fruit, and a long European folk history, where it has been used as a treatment for hormone deficiencies, and many other conditions. It can be found growing in moderate and tropical climates, throughout much of Australia, South East Asia, and Africa. It grows abundantly on roadsides and in vacant lots, and is actually considered by many people to be a weed, with sharp seeds that are painful to step on.
Tribulus terrestris has a long tradition of being used medicinally in China, and in India, where it has been used in Ayurvedic medicine as a tonic, diuretic, antiseptic, anti-inflammatory agent, and aphrodisiac. It was also used by physicians in Ancient Greece as a mood enhancer, a diuretic, and to treat headaches and sexual dysfunction. Bulgarian athletes traditionally use Tribulus terrestris before important competitions to give themselves extra strength and endurance.
More recently it’s been rediscovered in the West, where it’s being used by body builders and athletes, as well as by men looking to enhance their sex lives, largely because it appears to increase testosterone levels. Testosterone is the primary hormone associated with male sexuality, but low testosterone levels in the body have been associated with a reduced sex drive in both men and women. New research indicates that Tribulus terrestris helps to balance testosterone levels in the body.
According to smart drug researcher John Morgenthaler, “There’s some solid research on Tribulus terrestris now. It seems to be an adaptagen. An adaptagen is a substance, like a tonic, that works by bringing about balance in endocrine function, and other things in the body…pushing in whatever direction you need to go. And in most people over forty it seems to bring about an increase in testosterone.”
Tribulus terrestris may also work as a sexual booster in other ways, besides increasing testosterone levels. There’s evidence that it can help facilitate erections by relaxing the smooth muscles in the penis. This increases blood flow into the the corpora cavernosa–the paired erectile chambers–and allows for the penis to inflate.
Animal studies have shown that Tribulus terrestris can increase pressure in the corpora cavernosa, and, with regard to sexual behavior, it increases mounting frequency. These studies confirm what I’ve heard from the men that I’ve spoken with, who have told me that it increased their sex drive and gave them more powerful erections.
Sex and Damiana
by David Jay Brown
Damiana (turnera diffusa) is a small shrub that is native to parts of North and Central America. It grows in Texas and Mexico, and has been used for centuries as an aphrodisiac in Central America–primarily by women, who drank damiana tea prior to lovemaking. The Damiana shrub can grow up to six and a half feet tall, and the entire plant has a characteristic aroma that most people describe as pleasant–and similar to chamomile–due to an essential oil present in the plant. The dried leaves of the damiana plant, or damiana plant extracts, are available in most health food stores.
Although there has been little scientific research done on damiana, and no clinical studies have been conducted on its effects, chemical analysis shows that damiana contains alkaloids similar to caffeine that can have physiologically-stimulating effects. These alkaloids can stimulate blood flow to the genital area, and they are sometimes reputed to increase sensitivity in the region. In addition to these caffeine-like alkaloids, damiana also contains a mildly irritating oil that some people believe stimulates the genitourinary tract.
Many people–both men and women–say that damiana makes them feel sexually aroused, but women are said to be especially responsive to damiana. I first heard enthusiastic reports about damiana from the participants in my sex and drug workshops. Some couples would simply rave about the sexual benefits of drinking Damiana tea. Also, more than a few people told me that they experience a mild euphoria for several hours after using damiana, and that it’s effects are similar to low doses of cannabis.
Some herbalists recommend damiana as a general tonic for the reproductive system, and say that, in addition to being an aphrodisiac, it can also be used to help treat depression and anxiety. It is primarily used by women to treat low libido, although sometimes it’s also recommended as a treatment for urinary and vaginal infections, as well as menstrual problems. Herbalists recommend it to men as a remedy for impotence, premature ejaculation, and prostate complaints.
Sex and Deprenyl
by David Jay Brown
Deprenyl (selegiline hydrochloride) is a moderate-level stimulant and antidepressant that has been shown to improve memory, protect the brain against cell damage, alleviate depression, extend the life span of laboratory animals, and heighten sexual desire in both men and women. This impressive substance is available by prescription in the U.S., and it is primarily prescribed to help people with Parkinson’s disease, memory disorder problems, and sometimes depression.
However, a lot of healthy people also use deprenyl to improve their mental performance. It is considered by many people to be a “cognitive enhancer”, or a “smart drug.” Along with drugs such as hydergine and piracetam, and herbs like Gingko Biloba, these substances have a reputation for enhancing memory, accelerating intelligence, and improving concentration. There is also a good deal of scientific evidence to support these claims. (For an excellent summary of the scientific studies in this area see John Morgenthaler and Ward Dean’s book “Smart Drugs and Nutrients“. To read an interview on this site with John Morgenthaler click here.)
Many people report that smart drugs often have sexually-enhancing “side-effects”, and deprenyl has one of the leading reputations in this area. According to Ward Dean, M.D., a gerontologist that I spoke with in Pensacola, Florida, “anything that improves brain function is probably going to improve sexual functioning.” This is probably because sexuality and health go hand-in-hand, and sexual vitality is a pretty good indicator of overall health.
Deprenyl is a selective inhibitor of the dopamine-destroying enzyme monoamine oxidase (MAO) in the brain. Because deprenyl inhibits this destructive enzyme, levels of the excitatory neurotransmitter dopamine rise in the brain, which generally causes people to feel more pleasure and become more physiologically aroused.
Interestingly, unlike most other MAO inhibitor drugs (like the antidepressant Nardil), there are usually no dietary restrictions necessary when one takes deprenyl. When taken at moderate levels (under 10 mg.), deprenyl only inhibits the action of a specific type of MAO–MAO B–which doesn’t interfere with the body’s ability to metabolize the amino acid tyrosine, like a broad-spectrum MAO inhibitor does. This is why most other MAO inhibiting drugs carry the serious danger of triggering a hypertensive reaction if one eats tyrosine-rich foods, like cheese. Deprenyl has been described by researchers as working with great precision in this regard, and the physicians that I spoke with agreed that it was unusually safe.
Deprenyl is better than safe; this truly remarkable drug has also been shown to significantly increase the maximum lifespan of laboratory animals. To fully appreciate how significant deprenyl’s life extension potential is, one has to understand the difference between maximum life span and average life span. Many factors can affect the average lifespan (or the “normal life expectancy”) that an animal lives–genetics, diet, exercise, nutritional supplements, mental attitude, etc. However, even under the very best of conditions, there is an upper limit at which the longest-lived animals of a particular species can survive, and that is the animal’s maximum life span.
The average life span of a human being is approximately 70 to 80 years. However, the maximum life span of a human being is around 115 to 120 years. The laboratory animals in the deprenyl studies showed a 40% increase in maximum life span, the human equivalent of living 170 years. Since deprenyl’s primary effects work the same in all mammalian brains, it stands to reason that deprenyl’s life extension effects are likely to carry over to humans, just as the mental benefits do. Many people have certainly verified that the increase in sex drive occurs in both humans and laboratory animals.
Sex and Pheramones
by David Jay Brown
Pheromones are airborne chemical messengers that travel between animals of the same species, including humans. Each of these invisible, odorless messenger molecules is packed with a whole range of detailed information about you–such as your level of sexual desire, your level of aggression, and the attributes of your immune system.
Pheromones can cause us to have very powerful emotional reactions, without our being conscious of where the feelings are coming from–and often those feelings are of a sexual nature. Some pheromones have even been shown to alter hormone levels and fertility.
Every pheromone molecule carries with it your one-of-a-kind chemical “signature”, which is as unique as your DNA. Although you might not be aware of it, pheromone messenger molecules are continuously whirling off your body and into the air around you. They rise up from the recesses of your sweat glands, and they linger in strands of your hair. They hover around each of us like a mystical aura, creating invisible clouds of precise psychobiological information.
Pheromones are processed by two tiny organs inside the base of each nostril called the vomeronasal organ or the VNO. When these excitement-generating chemical messengers enter the VNO, and signal the brain, they completely bypass the higher cognitive circuits, and directly affect the hypothalamus, which is the center of the more primitive, emotional region of the brain. This helps to explain why we often get such strong gut reactions about people when we meet them for the first time.
The most potent pheromone-generating regions of the body are located in the groin, the armpits, and in the narrow strip of skin between the base of the nostrils and the upper lip, which is called the nasal sulcus.
Researchers believe that people dance closely with their potential sexual partners in order to get their noses close enough to their partner’s underarms, so that they are in a better position to evaluate that person’s pheromones.
Understanding the nasal sulcus’ role in pheromone production may help to explain why people kiss as a prelude to sex. It may be that people kiss their potential sexual partners as a way to more effectively sniff out their partner’s pheromones. Kissing appears to be nature’s way of getting our noses even closer to pheromone-rich regions of the body, allowing for an even more thorough evaluation. Oral sex, obviously, is another highly effective way to accomplish this.
There’s been a lot of research into pheromones over the past few years, and scientists are learning just how powerful the psychological and biological effects of these tiny chemical messengers can be. One of the results of this research is that a whole market has been created for pheromone-based perfumes, colognes, and other products that are designed to enhance one’s sexual attractiveness.
Since pheromone production tends to decrease with age, a number of products have been designed to help restore one’s pheromone clouds to more youthful levels. The adrenal hormone DHEA is thought to be a precursor to some pheromones, and taking DHEA or pregnenolone supplements may help to boost the production of these pheromones. (Click here to learn more about DHEA.)
Another interesting development to come out of this research is pheromone-based pharmaceuticals. Scientists are learning that pheromones can be altered in the laboratory to have powerful drug-like effects. These potent, synthesized modifications of naturally-occurring human pheromones are called vomeropherins, and they are currently being developed by Pherin Pharmaceuticals in Menlo Park, California. The development of designer pheromones may soon allow us to create heightened states of sexual excitation and enhanced states of sexual pleasure, as well as entirely new states of consciousness.
Anyone who wants to learn more about pheromones and vomeropherins should read Love Scents by Michelle Kodis. To order a copy of Love Scents click here.
Sex and DHEA
by David Jay Brown
DHEA (Dehydroepiandrosterone) is a steroid, a type of hormone that is produced by the adrenal glands, aswell as by the brain and skin. It is the most abundant steroid in the human body, and it is therecursor to all adrenal hormones, which start to decline in both men and women ataround the age of 25.
DHEA production declines with age in such a consistent linear fashion that one’s blood level of the hormone is often used as a bio-marker for aging. Since the body converts DHEA into all the other adrenal hormones, when DHEA levels begin to decline, so do the levels of these otherhormones. This includes testosterone and estrogen, which are linked to both sex drive and performance.
William Regelson, M.D., a specialist in medical oncology at the Medical College of Virginia–who was interviewed for this site–claims that by restoring one’s DHEA levels to their youthful equivalent, an aging person can improve their memory, rejuvenate their immune system, increase their overall physical energy, reduce body fat, prevent heart disease, and enhance their libido.
According to Dr. Regelson, taking DHEA supplements can significantly increase sex drive, and he thinks that “just about every adult age forty-five or older can benefit from taking DHEA.” Dr. Regelson said that one of the most constantly repeated comments that he hears from patients, as well as colleagues and friends, who are taking DHEA is that it has renewed their interest in sex. Men in particular report this effect from taking DHEA.
According to the Massachusetts Male Aging Study, which investigated sexual function and activity in men aged 40 to 70, the incidence of impotency increased as DHEA levels declined. Interestingly, many older men not only report an increased sex drive after they begin taking DHEA supplements, but also less of a problem achieving erection. In fact, many older men who have not had morning erections for years report that they suddenly began to experience them after taking DHEA.
DHEA is converted into testosterone, which is known to enhance libido in both men and women. This helps to explain why so many people report heightened sexual desire after they begin taking DHEA supplements. But there may be more to DHEA’s enhancement of sexual desire and performance than simply raising testosterone levels. Because taking DHEA raises the levels of all adrenal hormones, it tends to make people feel more energetic, and enhances feelings of well-being in general. It also tends to improve overall heath, and anything that improves physical health and well-being is likely to reflect positively on one’s sexual health as well.
Sex and Yohimbe
by David Jay Brown
Yohimbe is an herb that is available in most health food stores, which is derived from the inner bark of a tree that is indigenous to West Africa. Brews distilled from yohimbe bark have been used for centuries by natives in this region in order to fuel their unusually impressive tribal sex ceremonies, which are reported to sometimes last as long as two weeks.1
Yohimbine, the most active chemical compound in the yohimbe bark, is actually available as a prescription drug in the United
States for treating impotence. It is prescribed as an alternative to Viagra, due to the fact that it can also help facilitate erections in men. Research studies with yohimbine have shown it to be effective in helping men with impotence problems around 33 to 46 percent of the time.2 Some men that I’ve spoken with report that yohimbe actually gives them spontaneous erections, and that it also increases the amount of semen when they ejaculate.
However, unlike Viagra, many men (and women) report that yohimbine (and yohimbe) also increases sexual desire. Yohimbine was the very first drug to ever be listed in the Physician’s Desk Reference (PDR) as having “aphrodisiac” properties, although (strangely) the PDR states that “Generally, this drug is not proposed for use in females.” There is little scientific data on the effects of yohimbe and yohimbine on women, although I’ve heard more than a few anecdotal reports that it can also increase sexual desire in women.
Some people report that higher doses of yohimbe can have what are described as mild psychedelic effects that last for several
hours. This includes feelings of euphoria, heightened physical and emotional feelings, and “warm spinal shivers”.3
However, higher doses of yohimbe cause some people to report that they feel anxious, and, according to the PDR, people
sometimes experience other mild side-effects with yohimbine, such as dizziness, nausea, tremors, increased blood pressure and
elevated heart rate. The PDR also cautions against yohimbine’s use in conjunction with antidepressant medications and other
To buy Yohimbe online, click HERE.
1. Morgenthaler, J. and Joy D. Better Sex Through Chemistry. Smart Publications, 1994. p. 115.
2. Reid K, Surridge DH; Morales A, Condra M, Harris C, and Owen J. “Double-blind trial of yohimbine in treatment of
psychogenic impotence.” Lancet (England). 2(8556): pp 241-3, 22v Aug 1987.
3. Morgenthaler, J., p. 130.
Sex and L-arginine
by David Jay Brown
L-arginine is an essential amino acid found in many common foods (such as nuts, turkey, and dairy products), and it is readily available in most health food stores as a nutritional supplement.
In addition to being one of the building blocks of proteins in the body, L-arginine has been shown to increase the ability to obtain erections and maintain stamina in men. It has also been reported to increase libido, as well as the intensity of sexual sensations in both men and women.
This effect is due, at least in part, to the fact that L-arginine increases the production of nitric oxide, an excitatory neurotransmitter (or chemical messenger in the brain) that is also responsible for causing erections men. Nitric oxide is the only known gaseous neurotransmitter in the body, and it helps men obtain erections easier because it facilitates blood flow to the erectile tissue of the penis.
Viagra actually works by enhancing the effect of nitric oxide, and one of the reasons that drinking alcohol can interfere with a man’s ability to obtain an erection is because alcohol reduces the production of nitric oxide.
Although it’s mechanism for facilitating erections in men is clearly established, the mechanism by which it enhances libido and sexual sensations in women is less clearly understood. Animal studies suggest that the effect may be due to a chain of events triggered by nitric oxide that cause the release of two important female hormones–LHRH and LH–which lead to ovulation and sexual behavior.
L-arginine is sometimes used in a topological cream by women, which is applied to the external female genitals, and is said to improve clitoral erections and ease of orgasm.
Many healthcare professionals recommend L-arginine as an effective treatment for a loss of interest in sex, impotence, and difficulty achieving orgasm. Since it is easily available in most health stores, and since it is not only natural to the body, but essential, many physicians that I spoke with believe that taking L-arginine supplements should be one of the first treatments that men try if they are having problems with impotence.