Select Page

How Your Gut Health Can Be a Libido Booster

by | Jul 3, 2024 | SEXUALITY

libido booster

Yes, you read the title right. Perhaps unexpectedly, the gut plays a potent role in sexual vitality. While gut health has become a hot topic recently, its connection to other bodily functions besides digestion (including things like anxiety and, of course, sexual health) is lesser known. Keep reading to learn more about how and why a flourishing gut microbiome can help produce an increased libido.


What is Gut Health?


Gut health has become a buzzword. Everyone seems to be talking about it, from countless social media influencers to well-known doctors. It has emerged as a pivotal player not only in digestive function but also in influencing overall wellness. But, what exactly does gut health mean?


Gut health refers to the optimal functioning of the gastrointestinal tract (which includes the mouth, throat, esophagus, stomach, small intestine, large intestine, rectum, and anus). More specifically, gut health refers to the health of the gut microbiome. This complex ecosystem comprises trillions of bacteria and fungi, among other microorganisms that play a vital role in how our body functions.


Even though the gut plays a crucial role in digestion, its significance extends beyond that. It profoundly influences our health in perhaps unexpected ways, including our energy levels, mental health, and skin and hair health, among others. An imbalance in the gut bacteria, commonly referred to as dysbiosis, can lead to a myriad of side effects, ranging from digestive discomfort to weakened immunity.


Therefore, addressing gut health is about digestive comfort and enhancing our holistic well-being. Fortunately, there are easy steps one can take to prioritize their gut health and, therefore, optimize our health. For example, incorporating colorful plant-based and probiotic-rich foods into our plates, being mindful of our fiber consumption, and reducing our ultra-processed food intake can nurture a thriving gut microbiome. In addition, getting adequate sleep, stress management, and staying physically active all play a role in improving our gut health.


Gut health is vital to our health and vitality. By nurturing our gut microbiome, we can enjoy the health benefits of enhanced energy levels, improved mood, and, yes, a powerful libido. So, perhaps the path to boosting your libido begins in your gut! Keep reading to learn all about this.


The Intersection of Gut Health and Sexual Health


Although gut health is currently in the spotlight, its relationship to sexual health is less known. A thriving gut microbiome helps the body as a whole, functioning organism and primes our sexual well-being. When discussing ways to enhance sexual health, we have to acknowledge the role gut health plays in boosting libido and maintaining sexual function.


Sexual health encompasses various categories, including sexual desire, arousal, and function, among many others. When our gut health is in check, it can positively impact these facets by regulating sex hormones. More specifically, our gut microbiome can positively and negatively regulate sex hormone levels, which play a crucial role in boosting your libido. In addition, a balanced gut contributes to proper blood vessel function, which is essential for sustaining erections and overall sexual arousal.


On the other hand, an imbalance in our gut can also play a role in sexual dysfunction, which can show up as issues like erectile dysfunction or reduced sexual desire. Research indicates that an unhealthy imbalance of bacteria in our gut promotes the production of inflammatory markers, which may contribute to conditions such as erectile dysfunction by impairing blood vessel function and messing with people’s hormones. Balanced hormones play a crucial role in sexual desire and overall wellness (among many other bodily functions).


Let’s take insulin as an example. Insulin is a hormone that regulates blood sugar levels by assisting the body in turning glucose into cells for energy production and storage. When insulin levels become out of whack, other hormones follow. Insulin resistance, a problem caused by continuous elevated insulin, drives down testosterone levels, which significantly impacts sexual arousal and function. By keeping your blood sugar levels in check, you can support your body in regulating insulin levels and, as a result, boost your libido and improve your sexual health.


Another hormone that can interfere with an improved libido is cortisol. Also known as “the stress hormone,” cortisol regulates various physiological processes, including those related to gut health. However, when its levels are unchecked and chronically elevated due to stress, it not only interferes with the balance of different sex hormones but also impacts gut health. Elevated cortisol levels can disrupt the balance of bacteria in the gut, leading to inflammation and all kinds of messy symptoms, which in turn can affect sexual function and overall well-being.


Gut Health Revamp & Boosting Your Libido


Contrary to what we have been taught, revitalizing your sexual health does not always require drastic measures. Sometimes, putting your energy into a gut health revamp can work wonders. The information in this piece might have come as a surprise. Still, hopefully, it is now clear to you that a balanced gut microbiome is crucial for overall well-being, including sexual function. So, how can you boost your libido through a gut health revamp? Although there are several routes you can take, the approach is different for everyone’s lifestyle. Some of the suggestions mentioned below might be more relevant than others, so move forward with the ones that align with your lifestyle, values, and goals.


First, nutrition is critical. Bring more mindfulness into your eating and how it makes you feel. Can you add more color and fiber to your plate? Is a particular food making you feel a little off? Reducing your intake of ultra-processed foods, such as soft drinks, packaged cookies, chips, and fast food, can benefit your gut health. Probiotics and prebiotics, found in fermented foods like sauerkraut and kimchi, can help maintain a healthy balance of gut bacteria.


Managing blood sugar levels is also crucial for a healthy gut and an improved libido. Whacky blood sugar can disrupt the gut bacteria, leading to digestive issues that affect sexual desire and function. Jessie Inchauspé, better known as the Glucose Goddess, shares great tips to support your insulin levels and blood sugar. For instance, try a veggie starter before each meal and pair sweet and starchy foods with protein and fat.


Stress management also plays a significant role in sexual health. Chronic stress can elevate cortisol levels, which disrupt sex hormones and, therefore, impair sexual function. Incorporating activities that reduce stress daily has various health benefits, including improving gut health and, thus, sexual health.


It’s important to note that while gut health is crucial, it’s not the be-all and end-all of sexual health. Mental health, relationship dynamics, and physical health are equally important. Addressing gut health through the dietary and lifestyle suggestions made above should be part of an integrative approach to improving your sexual health. In addition, this post is not meant to be medical advice. If your symptoms are persistent or overwhelming, please consult your healthcare provider.


Who would have thought that the path to boosting your libido could begin in your gut? Bringing more intention into your lifestyle and nutrition habits will nurture your overall well-being and sexual health. Embrace the journey towards a healthier, more vibrant you! Your gut–and improved libido–will thank you for it!

Modern Intimacy is a group therapy practice, founded by renowned Psychologist and Sex Therapist, Dr. Kate Balestrieri. This inclusive blog is designed to provide a wealth of information and resources for mental health, relationships, and sexuality. Subscribe today to get the latest information from our expert contributors from all around the world.


Author Bio

Camila “Cami” Sluman is a clinical extern at Modern Intimacy and a graduate student in the Mental Health Counseling program at the University of Miami. Camila is a certified holistic health coach from the Institute of Integrative Nutrition and is passionate about the importance of health and wellness.



Subscribe to our Newsletter

You’ll get weekly sex and relationship tips, news, updates, podcast rundowns, and more!
You’ll also receive our 82-page e-book + journal for FREE!

You May Also Like…


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *