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RIDICULOUS APHRODISIACS: LOVE, DESIRE & DIGESTION

People have resorted to some strange and downright ridiculous aphrodisiacs to enhance their sex lives and keep their bedroom reputations intact. Some are funny, some are disgusting, and some are deadly. The bizarre range of aphrodisiacs shows how desperate humans are to keep their desire burning. Below are a few of the oddest love aids we could find from around the world:

Spanish Fly

Spanish Fly is a notorious aphrodisiac used by the Marquis de Sade and other connoisseurs of the flesh. Despite its name, flies have nothing to do with it. Real Spanish fly is made from cantharidin, a substance that comes from blister beetles. Just touching a blister beetle can cause your skin to blister. 

When ingested, cantharidin causes you to feel warm all over and swells your genitals. But this feeling is not caused by lust but by inflammation. You may have great sex if you try it, but be warned, you could also have the following symptoms: 

  • Painful urination
  • Blood in your urine
  • Convulsions
  • Kidney failure
  • Painful erections that last too long
  • Comas

Gladiators used to take Spanish Fly in preparation for orgies. While it works, after a fashion, it's certainly not approved by the FSA. If you find something called Spanish fly on the market now, it doesn't contain cantharidin, so it isn't the "real thing.'

Bird's Nest Soup

Chicken soup may cure all ills, but this concoction is quite different. When you sip this soup, you are ingesting the hardened spittle of swiftlets, cave-dwelling Southeast Asian birds. They use their saliva to build their nests which are highly prized as an aphrodisiac in some parts of the world. Cooks make the soup from the actual nests, which may sell for as much as $4500 per pound. 

Pieces of the nest are soaked overnight and then stewed with chicken stock and cornstarch. People consider it a great way to improve their libido issues, although the method is short on scientific proof. Plus, fans of the soup hound the poor swiftlets out of their homes.

Cow Cod Soup

If Bird's Nest soup isn't your cup of broth, you can try Cow Cod soup, a Jamaican dish traditionally eaten by men to improve their virility. Despite its name, the main ingredient is a bull's penis or cod. No one knows why the bull doesn't get top billing. Rumour has it that the soup, made with many vegetables and noodles, is quite delicious as long as you do not overthink what you are eating. Does it work? Well, sexual performance is often a state of mind, and if you like your aphrodisiacs on the literal side, this one's for you. 

Cobra's Blood

In Southeast Asia, some make a bolder choice when it comes to their libido boosters. Residents have long believed cobra's blood is a way to kindle those sexual fires. And it's not hard to find. You can buy it in local restaurants, bars, and vendors sell it on the street from trucks. Some fans of cobra's blood squeeze it in their mouths directly from a freshly killed snake, or you may choose to suck it directly from the snake's body. But remember, cobra's blood is best when you witness the actual beheading first. Snake lovers and snake haters may have trouble with this idea, especially as it doesn't work.

Leaf Cutter Ants

Columbia's leaf cutter ants are a marvel loved by scientists for their ability to harvest leaf pieces and use them to grow fungus as a food source for themselves and their little ones. (And you thought your parents were terrible in the kitchen.) But these high protein, low-fat delicacies are also considered a potent aphrodisiac and are sometimes given as wedding gifts as a honeymoon booster. Fortunately, the recipients usually roast the ants before eating them, making them a more palatable snack. You might want to wash them down with some leftover wedding champagne. 

Mustard Seeds

Mustard seeds are thought to deliver the spice in two ways - on the palette and in the pants. The Greeks first noted the mustard seed's positive effect on blood circulation - crucial for male performance. The Chinese also thought that mustard turned up the heat in the body and the bedroom. And this time, the belief has some validity. Mustard can increase your production of adrenalin which makes everything work better in the libido department.

Skink Skin

Have you ever seen a skink? Next time you're at the zoo take a look. Varieties of these thrive worldwide and often look half-lizard half-snake - cute if you like short and slimy. Sadly for them, people decided long ago that their skin, urine and feet were potent aphrodisiacs, exactly why remains a mystery. 

Tiger Penis

In China and other parts of Asia, the tiger penis is still used as an aphrodisiac. Some people feel that eating an animal organ will deliver power to your own. Sadly, this belief has led to the senseless killing of tigers and other exotic animals. China has outlawed the purchase of tiger penis, but buyers can still find it on the black market for an outrageous sum. This delicacy is usually made into a soup or stewed with herbs. Consuming tiger penis has no positive physical effect on your sexual performance, so essentially it's an expensive illegal placebo. Side note: Tigers are notoriously fast lovers, often mating hundreds of times in a few days with the act lasting 5-7 minutes. Plus, the female tigers hate it. 

Piranha Soup

This supposed sexual stimulant gives credence to the "eat or be eaten" motto of hunters everywhere. In the Pantanal in Brazil, the wet season brings an abundance of piranhas. When alive, no one loves this flesh-eating fish—but cooked to perfection? People love them, in part because piranha heads are supposed to have aphrodisiac properties. One thing is for sure, if you order piranha soup, expect it to be, well, chewy with fish noggins. 

Mannish Water

This Jamaican dish is rumoured to turn you into a bit of a randy goat. You'll need to desperately want that status though because this libido booster contains the following;

  • Goat head
  • Tripe
  • Assorted goat organs
  • Green bananas
  • Carrots
  • Dumplings
  • Herbs
  • Spices
  • White Rum

Baboon Urine

If you've always wanted to create a love potion, baboon urine may be for you. Especially popular in Zimbabwe, baboon urine is added to certain herbs to make a potion. Women apply this concoction to their private parts to ensure that their mate will stay faithful to them. Experts urge the women not to use too much because it smells and the man may become suspicious. 

Toad Venom

Found in several products claiming to improve erections, Asiatic or cane toad venom is highly toxic and used by these amphibians to injure or kill their prey. While this venom may cause you to get a painful, persistent erection, it may also damage your heart. If you take this poison, you'll need immediate medical care. Short version - Toad venom will not help your love life and may kill you.

Ambergris

Some of these aphrodisiacs may make you feel queasy, and others are the actual product of nausea. Ambergris is the vomit of sperm whales. These pretty blobs can be harvested from the whale's stomach or picked up on the beach after the giant mammals have "secreted" them. 

When people ingest this whale vomit, they get a dose of ambrein, which is a chemical in whale bile. This substance, although gross, may help the libido. Well, at least in the rodent world. Researchers found that ambrein makes rats amorous. The effect on humans is not known.

Fancy a root?

Munching on powdered insects or whale excretions isn't for everyone, so if you are looking for a libido booster this Valentine's day, we'd suggest finding more vegan-friendly options, like ginseng.

Some natural aphrodisiacs are safe and do produce scientifically proven results; ginseng is one of them. Ginseng is a root plant that is used as a seasoning and as a natural medication. One of its benefits includes enhancing sexual performance. 

It works by increasing nitric oxide levels which help improve erectile function. Plus, ginseng can aid the dopamine system, so women may get more pleasure from sex when they consume it, studies have also shown that ginseng preparations may increase orgasms in women—finally, a natural aphrodisiac with a good reputation.

We use ginseng in our Energy Gum because it is a natural stimulant, combine that with fresh breath, a caffeine boost and a natural libido boost and you're all set for romance!