Loss of Libido in Women & Natural Ways to Increase Your Sex Drive
Contrary to some people’s beliefs, it is not unusual for couples to face differences in their libidos, meaning sex drives. However, more often than not, it is the woman who experiences the lower libido. If this is something you are concerned about, consider the science behind it! (Stritof, 2019)
At the same time, while it is common to see women having a lower sex drive than their male partners, it is also vital that you take time to understand why you may be experiencing a loss in libido. Understanding the root cause will help you solve any issues before seeking out solutions on increasing your sex drive.
There is no denying that a significant difference in sex drives between spouses can cause a strain on the relationship. Feelings of guilt or dissatisfaction are not uncommon! The good news is, there are several natural things you can try to ramp up your libido if you feel like you are on the lower end of the spectrum. Let’s check them out!
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What Exactly Is the Libido and What Is Considered Normal?
Libido, meaning sexual desire, is just a fancy word for–yup, you guessed it–SEX DRIVE! An individual’s libido describes how much a person desires sexual connection. Someone with a high sex drive might think about sex and engage in intimacy more often, whereas an individual with a low sex drive may not think about or be interested in engaging in sex very frequently.
I hate to break it to you, but there really isn’t a standardized medical measurement of what counts as “high” or “low” sex drive. Simply put, there is a very wide range when it comes to determining “normal” sex drive in healthy adults. All that to say, the best way to determine if a problem exists is to evaluate whether or not a significant change has occurred one way or another in how you view your own sex drive.
Why We Experience a Loss in Libido
Before we jump into specifics, I think it is important to note that there is no correct or incorrect level of sex drive for women. Furthermore, there is no rule on how often the average couple should be engaging in physical intimacy! Research suggests that the female libido differs from men’s, and women naturally have a lower sex drive than men do (Stritof, 2019).
Sex drives, especially for women, can also be a finicky thing! Women’s sexual desires tend to be multifaceted and more complex than men’s, and various internal and external factors may cause us to see a low sex drive in women.
Common causes for a loss of sexual desire in women include:
- Sexual problems: You might want to consider whether you are having a physical issue that makes sex unenjoyable. Things like pain during sex or the inability to orgasm could make you lose your desire to engage in sexual activities!
- Fatigue: Exhaustion from being a parent, from your work life, caring for a loved one, or even just from the mundane daily tasks can contribute to a low sex drive.
- Stress: Stress and anxiety from your family, job, or anything else can surely be all-consuming and will have a direct impact on your desire for intimacy.
- Relationship issues: Lots of women require emotional closeness and connection before engaging in intimacy. Therefore, problems in your relationship may be causing you to lose your desire for sexual activity. Things like lack of connection, poor communication, trust issues, or unresolved conflicts and arguments can all play a role when considering low sex drive in women.
- Pregnancy, childbirth, and breastfeeding: Throughout your pregnancy and breastfeeding journey, your hormones will constantly be changing, which in turn can dampen your sex drive. After giving birth, exhaustion, changes in body image, and the pressures of caring for a newborn may also decrease your sexual desires.
- Medications: Certain medications, such as antidepressants, medicines for high blood pressure, and oral contraceptives, all can reduce libido. Talk to your healthcare provider if you believe your medications are affecting your sex drive!
- Medical conditions: Many long-term medical conditions can negatively affect sex drive due to physical and psychological factors. These may include diabetes, depression, thyroid disorders, heart disease, cancer, and arthritis. Speak to your healthcare provider if you think your low libido is a result of a medical condition.
- Age: A reduced sex drive is not an inevitable part of aging, but many women experience a loss of libido as they age and enter menopause due to the lowering levels of sex hormones.
Natural Ways to Increase Your Sex Drive
First things first, before we go into natural ways to ramp up your sex drive, we need to rule out physical cause. If you are experiencing low or loss of libido, it may be a good idea to bring this up with your healthcare provider! It may be neccessary to get ALL of your hormone levels checked in order to rule out any hormonal imbalances that are causing your low sex drive.
Furthermore, if you are experiencing any physical symptoms that are causing you to be uninterested in intimacy, such as pain during sex or mental blocks, this is also something you will want to speak to your healthcare provider about.
Now that we have ruled out potential physical causes, let’s get into to the fun stuff! There are a variety of things you can do in your everyday life and additional healthy lifestyle changes that have the ability to make a big difference in your desire for sex!
If you are wondering how to increase sex drive, below are some natural approaches you can take. Give one (or all 😉) of them a try!
- Regular exercise: Consistent exercise will increase your stamina, improve your body image, lift your mood, and reduce stress. All things that will in turn, boost your sex drive! Also, if you haven’t heard of sexercise, now may be the perfect excuse to try it!
- Manage stress & anxiety: Having high levels of stress or anxiety is a common barrier to libido or sexual function. Finding ways to cope with stress from work, financials, kids, family, or daily hassles can increase your libido! When we are calm and carefree, it is easier to enjoy sexual experiences. Things like yoga, meditation, massages, nature walks, and participating in hobbies are all good ways to lower your stress levels.
- Dedicate time to wind-down: It may be beneficial to dedicate some time to wind down before being intimate with your spouse. As wives and mothers, us women feel like we have a constant stream of thoughts running through our minds at all times, right?! Because of this, it makes it extremely difficult to snap our fingers and turn off our brains in order to get “in the mood”. Try taking some time to de-stress before being intimate! This may look like taking a relaxing bath, reading a book, or even just sitting down with your spouse to chat and connect emotionally.
- Get enough sleep: It’s no secret that most people are not in the mood for sex when they are fatigued. I’m sure all the mamas out there are nodding their heads for this one! However, studies have also shown that women who get adequate sleep the night before have increased sexual desire the next day! So, it’s not just in our heads, that’s backed by data (Villines, 2020). Women who report longer sleep times have also reported increased libido. Simply put…get those zzz’s ladies!
- Communicate with your spouse: Many women (myself included), crave an emotional connection with their spouse before having a desire to be physically intimate. How do we do that? Good, quality communication! Couples who communicate in an open and honest way will maintain a stronger emotional connection. Additionally, communication specifically about sex is equally as important! If you don’t already, talk about your likes, dislikes, expectations, fantasies, etc. We have some awesome intimacy conversation starters that you can print right at home if you are looking for a place to start! These kinds of conversations will help you to understand your spouse more and the topic of the conversation might even get you in the mood!
- Schedule intimacy: I know what you’re thinking, scheduling sex with your spouse screams “Mr. & Mrs. Boring”. But it’s hard to be in the mood when you have a million things to do during the day and a never-ending to-do list. Putting intimacy on your calendar and making it a priority may put your sex drive back on track! You can even have fun with it during the day leading up to it with flirty texts or notes. Who knows, the anticipation might be just what you need!
- Try new things: Why not try to add a bit of spice to your sex life? Try new positions, a different location, toys, or even bedroom games! If you and your spouse are comfortable with trying new things, this might really help to increase your sexual desire. Our Love is Sweet bedroom game is a long-standing fan-favorite and it is perfect if you are looking to try out an intimate bedroom game! It’s fun, sweet, and sexy while still being on the “tame” side of things!
- Ditch bad habits: Things like tobacco and excess alcohol all have the ability to decrease your sex drive (Mayo Clinic, 2020). Both tobacco and alcohol can limit sexual function, or even hinder your ability to climax. Ditching these bad habits may increase your libido as well as your overall health!
- Maintain a healthy weight: Some studies have linked excess body weight and obesity to decreased sex drive due to hormonal factors (Villines, 2020). Some individuals who are overweight may also experience psychological effects, such as lower body confidence or self-image. Maintaining a healthy body weight will only positively impact your sex drive both physically and psychologically.
- Focus on your relationship: For lots of women, emotional connection is a key element to sexual intimacy. So it may be a good idea to keep your relationship in check by resolving any lingering conflicts, working on communication, and building trust. Focusing on improving the quality of your relationship can also lead to an increase in sexual desire. This may look like regular date nights (you know all of us ladies in DivaLand are saying, “OH YES!”) or spending quality time together outside of the bedroom. In long-term relationships, you may need to work on the “spark” every once in a while, and that’s okay! Planning date nights may help bring back that butterfly feeling and in turn, increase your libido again!
- Spend more time on foreplay: Foreplay is a big factor in sexual satisfaction for lots of individuals, especially women! Some studies have shown that the majority of women are unable to climax from intercourse alone (Villines, 2020). There is no denying that having more pleasurable sexual experiences will increase a person’s desire for sex. So, try spending more time on foreplay. After all, what do you have to lose! 😉
- Foods & Herbs: If you’re looking to boost your libido, it may only take a walk to your kitchen! Certain foods and herbs have been backed by research to increase blood flow and sex drive (Sutton, 2019). Some examples include ginkgo, ginseng, tribulus, maca, saffron, chocolate, oysters, fenugreek, figs and bananas.
- Limit your intake of libido-hindering foods: In the same breath, there are some foods that cause the opposite affects of aphrodisiacs. While eating these foods won’t always put you “out of the mood”, they do contain nutrients that can decrease your sexual health. These include things such as high saturated fats, as found in fried foods, soy, high amounts of sodium, polyunsaturated fats, such as vegetable oil, and foods that require insulin to process, such as white flour and sugar.
- Switch to all-natural household & personal care products: Exposure to endocrine-disrupting chemicals can have a negative impact on sex drive, particularly in women! Many household and personal care products such as cleaners, lotions, makeup, perfumes, soaps, and detergents contain chemicals and toxins that can disrupt your body’s natural hormones (Tresca, 2014). Prolonged use of these products can even have negative long-term effects on your body and overall health! Try switching to all-natural or plant-based products in your home to improve your sexual health!
Low libido can be a complex issue when dealing with physical, psychological, and relationship components. Not to mention, mismatched sex drives between spouses may cause strains in the relationship. However, getting down to the root cause of things by being open and honest with your spouse as well as your healthcare provider will help you come to a solution much quicker!
It is important to remember that every individual is different and every couple is different as well! It is perfectly normal to see a wide range in sexual desires, even when looking at the same person. Sometimes it may take a little time and experimentation to find out what works best for both of you. However, I could definitely think of worse ways to spend my time, couldn’t you?! 😉
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