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Sexual Function

Research analysis led by Kamal Patel.
All content reviewed by the Examine.com Team. Published: Jun 28, 2017
Last Updated:

Summary of Sexual Function

Primary Information, Benefits, Effects, and Important Facts

Scientific Information on Sexual Function

Human Effect Matrix

The Human Effect Matrix looks at human studies (it excludes animal and in vitro studies) to tell you what supplements affect sexual function
Grade Level of Evidence
Robust research conducted with repeated double-blind clinical trials
Multiple studies where at least two are double-blind and placebo controlled
Single double-blind study or multiple cohort studies
Uncontrolled or observational studies only
Level of Evidence
? The amount of high quality evidence. The more evidence, the more we can trust the results.
Outcome Magnitude of effect
? The direction and size of the supplement's impact on each outcome. Some supplements can have an increasing effect, others have a decreasing effect, and others have no effect.
Consistency of research results
? Scientific research does not always agree. HIGH or VERY HIGH means that most of the scientific research agrees.
grade-c Minor Very High See 2 studies
An improvement in SSRI induced sexual dysfunction has been noted with Maca supplementation
grade-c Minor Moderate See 2 studies
SSRI related sexual dysfunction in both men and women appears to be reduced with coingestion of saffron, although saffron does not alter the efficacy of SSRI therapy on depression.
grade-c - - See study
No discernible effect on sexual function in older, healthy men.
grade-c - - See study
Vitamin E does not appear to influence sexual function or satisfaction in otherwise healthy persons with no known sexuality disorders.
grade-d Notable - See study
In one pilot study, ashwagandha supplementation improved ratings of pain, lubrication, orgasm, satisfaction, arousal, and the total score on the Female Sexual Function Index.
grade-d Minor Low See all 4 studies
While observational and smaller interventional studies have found some effect, larger and longer trials have not.
grade-d Minor High See all 4 studies
There may be a small improvement in overall sexual function in premenopausal women with libido taking 2.25 g/d of a tribulus extract. Effects on postmenopausal women are unclear.