Herb of the Month: Damiana

Today, Damiana can be found in many forms including teas, capsules, tablets, tinctures, and in many herbal blends.

damiana plant

Native to South and Central America, as well as Mexico, and Texas, Damiana (Turnera diffusa) has gained popularity for its use as an aphrodisiac. Also, it is known as a hormonal supporter.

Few studies have been done proving its effectiveness. That said, history and feedback regarding its successful use has had positive leanings. This is due to anecdotal evidence passed on from generation to generation. Dating back to the time of the Mayans and the Aztecs, Damiana has shown to be effective for:

  • mood
  • sexual enhancement
  • energy
  • overall body balance (1).

Research Support

Many people feel this herb may be of great importance to men alone. However, women have given positive feedback in many areas, although studies are limited. Researchers conducted one study on women using a blend of Damiana, Ginkgo, Ginseng, L-Arginine, vitamins and minerals, versus the placebo. After four weeks, 77% of the women felt an increase in sexual desire. They also felt a reduction in vaginal dryness, a greater frequency of sexual intercourse and orgasm, and enhanced clitoral sensation, versus 37% of the placebo group (2).

Very few studies have been done in regard to weight-loss support. Experts have spoken of the effects of appetite suppression with use of Damiana. Experts recommend the herb in combination with other support herbs such as Guarana and Yerba mate (3). While Damiana is successful on its own, when it is blended with supportive nutrients, it tends to be even more successful.

The plant itself is a small shrub that produces yellow flowers. Within Damiana, its essential volatile oils add to its overall effectiveness. You can find Damiana in many forms including teas, capsules, tablets, tinctures, and in many herbal blends.

 References
  1. National Library of Medicine. Exploring Scientifically proven herbal aphrodisiacs; https://www.ncbi.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3731873/
  2. Ito TY, Trant AS, Polan ML. A double-blind placebo-controlled study of ArginMax, a nutritional supplement     for enhancement of female sexual function. J Sex Marital Ther. 2001;27(5):541-9. doi:10.1080/713846828
  3. Harrold JA, Hughes GM, O’shiel K, et al. Acute effects of a herb extract formulation and inulin fibre on appetite, energy intake and food choice. Appetite. 2013; 62:84-90. doi: 10.1016/j.appet.2012.11.018