Libido & sexual problems - Alternative Remedies
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Remedies for Menopausal Symptoms

The Menopause Self Help Book by Susan M. Lark, M.D.,
The Wild Rose Scientific Herbal by Terry Willard, Ph.D.,
Menopausal Years The Wise Woman Way by Susun S. Weed
are drawn heavily upon for this segment. All references are provided here.


With onset of menopause, ovulation slows and ceases, and you may feel decreased libido. If you’re not feeling as youthful, don’t like the image in the mirror, or you feel alone, menopause can be a scary thing. It need not be scary.

As new vision and sense of self is gained during these menopausal years, you may now feel sexy because it’s what you want, not what someone else wants. Susun Weed tells us "Take heart. Crowned Crones [Native American cultural term] tell us that old women are very, very sexy, but only when they want to be, not when someone else wants them to be."


There are several glycoside-rich herbs that help libido in particular and are good sources of phytosterols which balance and nourish nerves, the endocrine system (including adrenals) and the kidneys. These include liferoot (Senecio aureus), groundsel (Senecio vulgaris), and Jacob’s groundsel (Senecio jacobaea). These plants grow where they can collect a wide variety of trace elements and micronutrients that slowly accumulate in the body as they are used. Susun Weed suggests that once the nervous and endocrine systems and adrenals are in top shape, the libido may be restored.

CAUTION: Senecio can cause temporary distressing changes in menstrual and premenstrual patterns during the first few months of use. Because of the potentially toxic alkaloids concentrated in the roots, only the flowering tops and leaves of liferoot should be used.31

Ginseng (Panax) is also said to improve libido, reduce hot flashes, and aid a variety of other menopausal symptoms.31

Certain plants such as Spanish fly or nutmeg, held in high esteem by many cultures for their aphrodisiac properties, have been found to be genitourinary irritants, rather than sexual stimulants, according to Dr. Susan Lark. Traditional Indian medicine considers a number of plants such as saffron crocus and priya-darsa to have extraordinary aphrodisiac powers. Yohimbe, a plant aphrodisiac, is the base of several drugs currently prescribed to treat impotence.


In his practice, Dr. John Lee found that "the women losing interest in sex had water retention, fibrocystic breasts, depression, dry and wrinkling skin, and irregular, sometimes heavy periods." He "gradually came to understand that these signs and symptoms were indicative of a progesterone deficiency caused by a failure to ovulate while estrogen continued to be produced, which is to say loss of sex drive correlates with progesterone deficiency, not estrogen deficiency." When these women used the progesterone supplementation he recommended, the story changed, and they reported that their sex drive had returned.

Dr. Lee’s clinical experience was at odds with what he had learned in medical school where he had been taught that only estrogen and testosterone were vital to normal sex drive. In 1994 a study found that physiologic doses of progesterone restored sex drive, whereas abnormally large doses had been found to inhibit sexual behavior.


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Researched and written by the ProjectAWARE group, 2000













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Updated 09/29/2010