Damiana is a beloved plant among mankind and is used for its aphrodisiac and sedative properties. It is characterized as a sexual stimulant and likes to be drunk as a tea or tincture and made into an alcoholic beverage. It is also possible to smoke. The aromatic leaves are full of essential oils that give off a pleasant scent. According to ancient customs, Damiana was a popular remedy for strengthening the nerves and was drunk during long trips, when the mental sense needed to be strengthened. You could compare it to the way people drink coffee in the West today.
Holly-rose, sage rose, safranmalven (German), oreganillo (Spanish). The Dutch name Damiana comes from the holy patron Damianus who was responsible for the apothecaries and died a martyr.
Characteristics of Damiana
Damiana originally grows in subtropical areas including parts of Texas, Central America, Mexico, parts of South America and the Caribbean.
It grows as a woody plant somewhat similar to mint and produces small, yellow flowers. As mentioned earlier, it has a pleasant fragrance reminiscent of figs or chamomile. It flowers in early to late summer and then produces fig-like fruits. The botanical name Turnera comes from the English botanist Dr. W. Turner, who wrote one of the first English books on herbs and died in 1568.
Damiana is best known as a sexually stimulating medicine. Indigenous peoples used Damiana in the form of a tonic, which would help strengthen the sexual organs and intensify the experience of sex. Meanwhile, science has conducted studies on this and it appears that the effects of Damiana as an aphrodisiac can be substantiated. In these animal studies, it became clear that an extract of Damiana had a beneficial effect on the sex experience of these animals and the degree to which they had sex. Male rats with sexual dysfunction also showed improvement.
Damiana has had a reputation for having a positive effect on mood for centuries. Certainly people with anxiety disorders can benefit from the use of Damiana. Meanwhile, in this study, scientists looked at the effect of one of Damiana's constituents, apigenin. This substance was found to have a calming effect and counteract stress in lower doses. In higher doses, a more sedative effect occurred.
Homeopathy and phytotherapy
Within herbal medicine Damiana is often prescribed as a medicine to help improve the mood. This often in combination with other herbs. It is possible to combine Damiana itself with other herbs to strengthen the medicinal and synergetic effect. Damiana is good to combine with following herbs.
The passionflower (Passiflora incarnata) is a flower with strengthening properties. As a mild MAO inhibitor, it enhances the action of certain other plants and active ingredients. For example, passionflower is combined with the alkaloids of certain psychoactive plants or funghi, such as psilocybin, to intensify the degree of the trip. A word of caution: passionflower (and any other MAO-inhibitor) also enhances the effects of certain medications. Never combine with antidepressants or other drugs. Consult with a doctor first if you are taking medication.
Passionflower on its own has a calming effect and has for centuries had a reputation as a beneficial agent for treating anxiety disorders and depression. When combined with Damiana, this effect on the state of mind can be enhanced.
Muira Puama and Catuaba
Of course, Damiana likes to be combined with other aphrodisiac plants to increase sexual arousal even more. Examples of aphrodisiacs are Muira Puama and Catuaba, two aphrodisiacs native to the Amazonian forest. As a sexual tonic, these plants can be used to add an extra sensual twist to sex. Products such as Love chocolates make it easy for you: various aphrodisiac herbs, including Damiana, as an extract in a tasty chocolate.
History of Damiana
Indigenous peoples used Damiana for centuries. When the Spanish conquerors invaded these areas they first came into contact with this plant and its acclaimed medicinal effects. At that time Damiana already had the reputation of being a sexually stimulating medicine that is also healthy for the genitals, both for men and women. Damiana has also been used for centuries by women to soothe a painful menstrual cycle.
Damiana was also seen as an antidepressant that with its calming properties helped improve the mood and could be used for people who suffered from certain fears.
Originally Damiana also has a reputation as a medicine for the bladder. Thus Damiana would have a positive effect on ailments such as a bladder infection and problems with urination.
Although there is not enough scientific evidence to support these claims, there are many stories of experience to be found that support this working.
Damiana contains various plant substances including damianin, apigenin, tetraphillyn B, arbutin, terpenes, or aromatic plant substances including pine, sesquiterpenes and triterpenes and fatty acids.
Uses of Damiana
Damiana has a long history of use as an aphrodisiac. As an aphrodisiac it has been consumed for centuries before people share the bed. Nowadays Damiana is also a popular herb that is sold in Smartshops. There are several ways in which Damiana can be used. Below are some examples:
With the help of a vaporizer it is possible to vaporize the active substances from beneficial herbs, after which they can be inhaled. This therapeutic method of ingestion ensures that the medicinal effects can be utilized to their maximum potential. Unlike smoking herbs, where a large part of the active ingredients literally go up in smoke....
Damiana, as mentioned earlier, contains aromatic essential oils and other plant substances. According to many user experiences, using Damiana with a vaporizer is a pleasure, both in terms of taste experience and effect. Check out Sirius' Vaporizer range for different models. For a subtle, gentle smoking experience, the Pax 2 is great. For a solid vapor experience, the Mighty or Crafty is recommended. These models are easy to handle and can be taken anywhere without problems.
Joint or pipe
As mentioned above, using a vaporizer is preferable to the act of smoking. Especially if you are interested in the medicinal properties of plants. However, the calming and aphrodisiac effects of Damiana can also be felt when smoked. According to many user experiences, it goes very well with the effects of cannabis.
Try rolling a joint with Damiana as a substitute for tobacco. Not only will you have a different taste experience that is fresher and spicier, but the effects are completely different as well. The absence of nicotine provides a more calming effect where the warming, pleasant effect of Damiana has a positive impact on the mood.
A simple and tasty way to use Damiana is in the form of a tea. Use about a tablespoon per cup and let it steep for 3 to 10 minutes, depending on your own taste. Drinking tea is in itself a soothing activity and ideal as a ritual in the evening, when you are getting ready for bed. Not only does Damiana have the reputation of being an aphrodisiac, warming herb, it is also used as a way to treat sleep problems.
A traditional Mexican way of consumption is to process Damiana into a liqueur. In Mexico, Damiana is often found as an ingredient in cocktails and according to certain tales, it is also found in the original margaritas.
Cocaine and alcohol
In the 19th century Damiana was often added to certain medicines. For example, you had Pemberton's French Wine Coca. This French drink was invented as a medicine and consisted of the combination of cocaine and alcohol. At the time, the so-called "Vin Marianni" was acclaimed and was loved by writers, artists and intellectuals. Pemberton's French Wine Coca was seen as a kind of panacea that was good for everything, but mainly had the reputation as a sexual remedy that did wonders for the genitals. From this alcoholic drink was born the immensely popular soft drink Coca Cola, which of course today no longer contains cocaine.
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