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Can Clove Cure Erectile Dysfunction?

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From time to time the Internet seems to fixate on a new miracle cure for ED. In the past few months there have been dozens of articles and posts extolling the benefits of clove, with titles like “Cloves are a magical cure for sexual problems.”

Clove is a commonly used spice, and a traditional folk remedy for conditions ranging from toothaches to upset stomaches. As with many folk remedies, the supposed benefits have become magnified over time.

In fact, there has been some research on the use of clove as a treatment for sexual disorders. A 2004 study1 found that a clove extract increased sexual activity in rats; a 2020 study2 found that clove essential oil improved erectile function is diabetic rats.

It’s important to understand that studies such as these do not necessarily translate into benefits for humans! Preliminary studies with rats may allow researchers to understand how natural substances work. They can then isolate the active ingredients, refine them into effective medications, and test those medication on humans. The entire process may take years or decades, if the research shows significant results.

The studies of various special foods for erectile dysfunction have shown little if any benefit. However, a healthy diet and regular aerobic exercise can reduce the chances of vasculogenic ED.


References

  1. Tajuddin; Ahmad, Shamshad; Latif, Abdul; Qasmi, Iqbal Ahmad. “Effect of 50% ethanolic extract of Syzygium aromaticum (L.) Merr. & Perry. (clove) on sexual behaviour of normal male rats.” BMC Complementary Medicine and Therapies. Nov 2004.
    <https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC534794/>
  2. Yilmaz-Oral, Didem ; Onder, Alev; Gur, Serap; Carbonell-Barrachina, Ángel A; Kaya-Sezginer, Ecem; Oztekin, Cetin Volkan; Zor, Murat. “The beneficial effect of clove essential oil and its major component, eugenol, on erectile function in diabetic rats.” Andrologia. July 2020; 52(6):e13606.
    <https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32352181/>

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