~ Rainforest Herbs
for Natural Euphoria ~
Although I'm a huge proponent to embracing the variation of our moods to unlock the insides of our psyche, I get why so many of us just want to feel naturally high (all the time). Sometimes, it's worth putting all challenges aside to feel freedom and joy. Accessing freedom often reminds us of the underlying truth within the story that often plays in the forefront. Stressful situations come and go; however, doing the work and practicing daily rituals that allow us to witness the underlying fabric of our reality is vital.
This is where herbs can come in very handy, supporting us with a vibrational upgrade. Although some people feel the state changing effects of these herbs within 12 minutes, others might not. Something important about herbs that we must remember is that we need to trust it and allow it time to work it’s magic. The popping-pill culture has enabled a certain expectation of instant gratification that isn’t always the case for everyone with herbal medicines, and anything in relation to nature for that matter. Remember that our body sometimes goes through detox before it gets a chance to attune and feel a whole new energetic network. Just because you don't feel it the first couple times, doesn't been you won't ever feel it and it's just a placebo effect. Be patient, allow the medicine to unblock and work its magic, and continue practicing with plants mindfully. There is not a single doubt in my mind, that you will be astounded by the changes plant medicines will provide you.
It’s no wonder that some of the best aphrodisiacs, mojo boosters and mood elevators come from the jungle. Although, all landscapes in the world, of course, have their set of mood uplifters, it's fascinating how the jungle holds some of the most potent and popular ones out there. Below are some of my all-time favorite mood-boosters from the rainforest that have been used for centuries by indigenous peoples around the world.
And, you can find all these precious plants within our apothecary, and in many of our formulations!
6 MOOD ELEVATORS
Guarana plant has been an ally to the Indigenous peoples of Brazil for its medicinal qualities well before the country became colonized. South American Indian tribes (especially the Guaranis, where the plant's name is derived) dry and roast the seeds and mix them into a paste with water, making a chocolatey kind of drink for energy and medicinal uses.
European researchers began heavily studying guaraná (in France and Germany) in the 1940s, finding success to the indigenous uses to cure fevers, headaches, cramps, pain, and as a potent energy tonic were well-founded. Guaraná is used and well known for its stimulating and libido-boosting properties. It was often prescribed by local medicine people for those with low sex drive, impotency, and “anorgasmia”( difficulties in experiencing orgasms). In the United States today, guaraná is known to increase mental alertness, fight fatigue, and increase stamina and physical endurance. Studies have also demonstrated how its very protective against the damaging effects of stress, because of its highly preventive nature against premature aging-which is one of the many reasons it has been paralleled to being an undiscovered adaptogen.
Presently, guaraná is taken daily as a health tonic by millions of Brazilians, who believe it helps overcome heat fatigue, combats premature aging, detoxifies the blood, and is useful for intestinal gas, obesity, dyspepsia, fatigue, and arteriosclerosis. The seed is also used for heart problems, fever, headaches, migraine, neuralgia, and diarrhea. Guaraná has been used in body care products for its tonifying and astringent properties.
Suggested Use: 1/2-1tsp, depending on needs and sensitivities.
Contraindications: Please refrain from using if you have an over-active thyroid or suffer from anxiety and/or panic attacks.
Also called "potency wood," is a small tree that grows to 5 m high and is also native to the Brazilian Amazon as well as other parts of the Amazon rainforest. Native peoples in the Amazon use it for neuromuscular problems, sexual debility, rheumatism, grippe, and cardiac/gastrointestinal weakness. It's also valued there as a preventive for baldness. In Brazilian herbal medicine, muira puama still is a highly-regarded sexual stimulant with a reputation as a powerful aphrodisiac. It is recommended there for the treatment of impotence and dysentery. Since its entry into the global market in around 1960, it’s been used in Europe to treat impotence, infertility, nerve pain, menstrual disturbances, and dysentery. In Germany, muira puama is used as a central nervous system tonic, menstrual disturbances, and rheumatism.
Master herbalists, like Donald Yance, and other Brazilian scientists have also regarded this an undiscovered adaptogen for its power anti-aging nature, as well as its protective nature against oxidative stress.
Suggested Use: Traditionally 1tsp of powder per cup
Contraindications: It has no noted side effects- however, as with many sexual stimulants, it can slightly raise blood pressure.
*This is one of the main ingredients in our Euphoria Elixir. If you’d like to experience this herb individually, contact us!
A vigorous-growing small tree from the upper Amazon. Catuaba is perhaps the most famous of all Brazilian aphrodisiac plants. The Tupi Indians in Brazil first discovered the potency enhancing qualities of the tree and over the last few centuries, they have composed many songs praising its wonders.
An infusion of the bark is used traditionally by indigenous people in Brazil. In Brazilian herbal medicine today, catuaba is considered a central nervous system stimulant with aphrodisiac properties. A bark decoction is commonly used for sexual impotency, agitation, nervousness, nerve pain and weakness, poor memory or forgetfulness, and sexual weakness. It’s known to stimulate sex drive and increase blood flow, particularly in the genitals. Shortly after ingestion, most people will feel a tingling sensation along the spine and a sensual feeling all over the body. The skin and genitals become more sensitive. It is certainly suitable for those looking to give the love life department a boost.Suggested Use: 1/2tsp of powder per cup of water. Recommended as an infusion or decoction.
Contraindications: None known.
Many of you know this beautiful aromatic shrub native to Mexico. Damiana was recorded to be used as an aphrodisiac in the ancient Mayan civilization, as well as for "giddiness and loss of balance." A Spanish missionary first reported that the Mexican Indians made a drink from the damiana leaves, added sugar, and drank it for its purported power to enhance lovemaking.
Damiana has a long historical use in traditional herbal medicine around the world. It is thought to act mainly as an aphrodisiac, antidepressant, tonic, diuretic, and cough-suppressant. It has been used for centuries as a classic tonic for depression, anxiety, sexual dysfunction, debilitation, bed-wetting, menstrual irregularities, gastric ulcers, and constipation.
Since 1888, Damiana has been recorded within scientific literature and was traditionally used by Doctors between 1888-1940 to improve sexual function in both males and females, as well as for its positive effects on the reproductive organs.
Suggested Use: Traditional remedies call for 2-4 g of dried leaves infused in a cup of boiling water
Contraindications: Not suggested during pregnancy as it can act as an abortifacient. Persons with diabetes and hypoglycemia should use this plant with caution, as blood sugar levels should be monitored accordingly due to this possible effect.
I know, I know..... I feel like cacao is almost over-talked about, especially with the whole cacao ceremony explosion going on worldwide. And, it’s for good reason! It seriously works! Commonly referred to as the ‘food of the Gods’, raw Cacao (not to be confused with cocoa, which is highly processed) is not only the highest food source antioxidant on the ORAC scale, but also contains the stimulating aphrodisiac theobrimine, mood-boosting serotonin and tryptophan, and a huge amount of phenylethylamine aka PEA (the ‘love chemical’, due to its ability to increase dopamine). Also, it is one of the most potent food sources of magnesium. Dopamine, like serotonin, is a neurotransmitter with slightly different functions. Dopamine plays a significant role in the prevention of Parkinsons, promoting feelings of pleasure and reward, attentiveness, memory, motivation, and sleep. It is the PEA in cacao that contributes to the ‘high’ we receive from it, and can mimic the feeling we get when we have completed a good sweat session or the feeling of being in love.
*Due to the massive supply of cacao on a planetary level, the farming of this precious tree can be very toxic, and even contain lethal heavy metals. It’s vital you source a clean and excellent cacao. Our heirloom cacao is all organic and heavy metal free.*Suggested Use: 1tsp-1tbsp per cup *This very much varies depending on the sensitivity of the person. Intuitively listen to your body and consume it based on how you feel.
Contraindications: Those intaking MAOI anti-depressants or those with serious heart conditions should consume with care, and speak with a healthcare practitioner.
Read more about the magical properties of cacao here.
This beautiful blue flower was once highly revered by the ancient Egyptians. Said to be native to the Nile, has also been found in the rainforests of Asia, including in Mexico and in Guatemala by the Maya.
Blue Lotus was used as a sacred sacrament in ancient Egypt and used in sacred ceremonies to induce states of relaxation and euphoria. Although you’d think the extensive amount of carvings depicting this flower was due to its beauty, it was regarded as one of their prime medicines used within ritual, rite of passage initiations, as well as special celebrations of specific harvests, etc. Depending on the dosage and potency its effects can range anywhere from sedative effects, to feelings of euphoria, sexual stimulation, and due to its pineal gland activation, it can induce deep states of meditation and deep dreaming.
Read more about this mysterious flower here.
Suggested use: About 1tsp of petals per cup. Infuse in almost boiling water, and steep for 3-7 minutes. Combine with Mucuna for exalted benefits.
Contraindications: none known.
Also known as “velvet bean” and "dopa-bean", is a legume that grows in the tropics ranging from Asia all the way to Central-South America. In Indigenous cultures within Central America, its referred to as “nescafe” as traditionally it was made into a paste and served as a coffee-like beverage. The bean has been used for centuries for its mood-regulating, and euphoric enhancing effects. Mucuna has an almost magical ability to improve motivation, well-being, energy and sex drive. Mucuna is a secondary adaptogen (yet to be officially coined as one due to a lack of research within the subject area). Adaptogens are healing plants that regulate hormones and helps the body to better adapt to stress. Specifically, Mucuna pruriens contains high levels of naturally occurring L-dopa, the precursor to dopamine. Dopamine is a key brain chemical that plays a major role in our ability to feel motivation, experience pleasure, sleep well, a clear mind, and experience a broad spectrum of emotions. Without enough dopamine in our body, we might feel exhausted, lethargic, confused, and even depressed.
Many of you know how much I love this bean, as I recently wrote how Mucuna might sub the feeling or desires for party drugs like MDMA. You can find the article here.
So good! These are such effective remedies. I’ve been giving my husband guarana and he has witnessed a significant change in his mood in the mornings!
I love your products so much! I live in Costa Rica and can find some of the blends, but do you ship herbs to Costa Rica or do you ever travel here to offer classes or something similar? Would like to get a whole assortment of the love herbs.
Another really insightful article from you guys, thanks for sharing !