Aphrodisiacs, the Center of Romance

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Image courtesy of Greg Jordan at flickr.com

Aphrodisiacs are a natural for Valentine’s Day. There are food sources – think chocolate, oysters, and figs (but not in the same dish). But there are also scent sources. It has been shown that smell is an integral part of attraction making aromatherapy key to a successful romantic interlude.

Smell is important in the attraction between people. Our individual body odor can help us choose our partners. “Kissing is thought by some scientists to have developed from sniffing; that first kiss being essentially a primal behaviour during which we smell and taste our partner to decide if they are a match.” Think of it as Love at first smell.

Moving from the topic of love to lust, we examine studies produced by Dr. Alan Hirsch on the impact of smell. His research shows that the aromas that most caused arousal in male subjects were pumpkin pie and lavender. Maybe a purple plant could be more useful than a purple pill. For women, Dr. Hirsch found that they preferred, oddly enough, a combination of Good ‘n Plenty and cucumber.

Essential oils would be just as good, if not better, than the foods used in the above research. There are many oils considered aphrodisiacs by their assistance with emotional issues and promotion of physical effects. Male aphrodisiacs are usually more spicy (think ‘heat’): cinnamon (Cinnamomum zeylanicum), cardamom (Elettaria cardamomum), patchouli (Pogostemon patchouli), sandalwood (Santalum spicatum), and jasmine (Jasminum sambac). Female aphrodisiacs are often floral: ylang ylang (Cananga odorata), rose (Rosa damascena), clary sage (Salvia sclarea), and neroli (Citrus aurantium). The perfect blend would combine both spicy and floral.

A sensual blend for Valentine’s Day
2 drops bergamot (Citrus aurantium var. bergamia)
1 drop cardamom (Elettaria cardamomum)
1 drop rose (Rosa damascena)
Use the above blend to set the mood in diffusers, room & body sprays, or scented bed linens.