A Brief History of Tea Aphrodisiacs


When you think about getting in the mood, oysters, chocolate, and champagne often come to mind, but do you ever think about tea? Aphrodisiac herbs have been used across the world for thousands of years. Whether you’re looking to try some aphrodisiac tea yourself or just looking to read about what teas people have used to get frisky, we’ve got you covered.

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DAMIANA:  Damiana is a herb from a shrub native to central and South America, and was used by the Indigenous people as an aphrodisiac in a sort of tea consisting of the leaves of the plant and sugar. But it wasn’t until Europeans traveled to America that the powers of damiana were documented, with Europeans discovering the drink created by the Guaycura tribe in Mexico.  The herb then became popular as trade with the Aztecs was introduced, expanding the drink across the world.  In 1875, damiana tea was introduced in the U.S. by Dr. J.J. Caldwell, who promoted it as a sexual tonic, and the herb was introduced in many products like wafers and drinks as a result.

YOHIBINE: Yohimbe is a tree that grows in Africa, the bark of which contains yohibine, which is harvested and used to make tea with the hopes of boosting both sexual and athletic performance. It was thought to be discovered by the Pygmies and the San in West Africa. German missionaries brought the bark back to Germany. It was so popular Yohimbe bark was used to make “love candies” which were popular gifts among European lovers. 

GINSENG: One of the most well-known aphrodisiac herbs, ginseng is still used in traditional Chinese medicine to help treat sexual dysfunction and to improve sexual desire. And it makes sense that it’s still used today considering its rich history: ginseng was discovered 5,000 years ago in the Asian provinces of Manchuria, meaning that it's been a part o Chinese medicine for over 2,000 years. As it grew in popularity, ginseng became a symbol of divine harmony and was frequently used in trade.  And ginseng is still a popular herb in tea today: get a boost from Kama Tea by Udyan Tea, which also has energizing black tea and romantic rose petals.

MACA: Also known as “Peruvian Viagra” or “Peruvian Ginseng”, the maca root was used by the Peruvians as an important product for trade. Because it was considered to be such a powerful aphrodisiac, only the royal court and imperial family could use the root when the Incas controlled the region. It was later transported to Spain, with Spanish explorers bringing Maca root to the American colonies; there are reports that nine tons of maca root were ordered for the colonies each year for its fertility boosting and aphrodisiac properties.  Maca is still used for its energizing and libido-boosting properties today. You can reap these benefits in the delicious Maca Chocolaté by Teecino which combines maca with other superfoods from the Incas, Aztecs, and Mayans like ramón, cocoa, and chilies. 

BEETS: If it’s good enough for Aphrodite, the goddess of love and beauty, it’s good enough for us!  Although Aphrodite was said to eat beets to make herself more desirable, that isn’t where beets’ journey ends. They were also enjoyed in Ancient Rome and Greece for their aphrodisiac properties. The gorgeous pink color of beets is reminiscent of love, and the juice was even used as a lip and cheek stain by women in the 19th century. Because beets contain boran, they help to boost your sex hormones while also increasing stamina, benefits you can enjoy in Up Beet by teapigs, which combines beetroot with green tea and hibiscus for an energizing tea blend.

CINNAMON: The spice has a long history: it’s been referenced in Chinese writing all the way back to 2800 B.C.! It was worth even more than silver for its health and aphrodisiac properties, and even caused wars due to its high demand. Traditional cinnamon, also known as Ceylon cinnamon, is produced in Sri Lanka and was held in a monopoly by the Dutch until England eventually took over the territory after winning it from France. Enjoy the uplifting spice in Cinnamon Bun by Pinky Up which has the powerful spices of cinnamon and nutmeg to create an aromatic and decadent flavor.

SHATAVARI: An important herb in Ayurvedic medicine, Shatavari is even recommended in the Kama Sutra as an aphrodisiac for women.  The name itself even translates to “having 100 spouses” because it was used so often to help women with fertility. You can enjoy the balancing powers of Shatavari in Sweet Himalayan Green Tea by Vahdam Teas, which also contains harmonizing cardamom, turmeric, and ashwagandha. 

CHOCOLATE: Chocolate was so beloved that the Mayans referred to it as “food of the Gods”, and the cocoa bean has a long-time tie to sex. The Mayans used it to pay for prostitutes. But chocolate was popular among the Aztecs, too. The Aztec ruler Montezuma was said to consume as many as 50 cups of cocoa elixir before heading to his harem. When chocolate was introduced to Europe by the Spanish explorers, it wasn’t as an aphrodisiac, but the Europeans soon discovered there was more to chocolate than just its delicious taste. Feel-good chocolate is still used as an aphrodisiac today, and we love it in this yummy Cacao Tea by MiCacao.


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The statements in this post have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. 

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