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10 Aphrodisiacs 4 Valentine’s Day

Portrait of a romantic couple eating at a restaurant and feeding each other while looking very happy

Look, this might not be the place to disclose what I may or may not be into, but I can provide a public service to those who aren’t opposed to a little unconventional stimulation! Valentines Day is actually here in case you hadn’t noticed and of course, lovers and friends with benefits around the world are devising delicious ways to boost their libidos for the boudoir. But, do any of these time-honored love tonics and aphrodisiacs really work?

To be real, almost every country and culture boasts some form of “culinary Cialis” but the late great travel host Anthony Bourdain once observed, “if every so-called aphrodisiac actually increased one’s virility — we’d never be able to put on pants.” (team no pants personally) Still, adventurous eaters and curious cats say don’t knock ’em until you try ’em. Due to the occasion and my pure unconditional love for you, I present to you a food porn-ucopia of global dishes to help Valentine’s diners sift out the bonafide philtres from the sexual snake oil with some help from the NY Post.

Durian

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Nothing screams “love potion” like a spiky fruit so pungent it’s been mistaken for a gas leak, and an “open sewer,” right? Naysayers might be surprised that durian’s status as a sex stimulant is actually based in science but a 2010 study involving mice revealed that the so-called “King of Fruit” increases sperm count and sex drive when eaten consistently over a month. If you can stomach the stench, these smelly Valentines are actually quite sweet and custardy. Personally no chance for me that thing smells despicable.

Balut (fetal duck egg)

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This 20-day-old duck embryo for sure looks like something that fell out of a nest. Still, the high-protein Filipino delicacy is said to “strengthen the knees,” according to the Journal of Ethnic Foods, (perhaps doubly so if you eat an egg fertilized by Dave the Duck). Also a big time no from me, I have a hard enough time eating regular degular eggs… you want them to be FORMING in there? Nah fam.

Leafcutter Ants

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These fun-sized farmers cultivate fungus to survive, and their “big-bottomed” fertility is said to translate to the human bedroom as well. According to the Insider, fried leafcutter ants are a popular wedding present in Colombia, where they’ve been consumed for hundreds of years. I mean I’d pop an ant or two not to be rude but I typically try not to eat insects.

Cobra Wine

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Forget to pack Viagra for the Vietnam trip? Not to worry. Simply remove a live cobra’s heart a la the evil priest in “Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom,” place it in a shot of rice wine, and down the liquor so you feel the heart beating all the way down your gullet. The resulting buzz is believed to give your sex drive a boost, the South China Morning Post reports. Chase it with a tumbler of green snake bile liquor for a libido-boosting speedball.

Heck. no.

Three Penis Wine

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From tiger parts to mule members, China has cornered the market on exotic penis dishes. The holy grail is three penis wine, according to National Geographic. This combination of seal, deer and dog members is said to make you a demon in the sack. We’re not sure how this literal cocktail works its magic, although we presume it’s rooted in the “you are what you eat” mantra.

I’m cool on sipping on penal fluids for life to be honest… they can keep that over there.

Maggot Cheese (Casu Marzu)

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A cheese wheel stuffed full of live maggots might sound revolting — but Sardinians swear by it. The larvae’s digestive juices accelerate the cheese’s ripening process, and apparently make for a potent sex tonic, according to locals. Just be sure to wear eye protection when unsealing the wheel as “cheese skippers [maggots] are able to jump a few inches,” according to the Science of Cheese.

Casu Marzu doesn’t exactly pass the FDA’s regulations for food contaminants, (who woulda thunk it?) so you won’t find it in America. Just diy and see how that goes!

Pufferfish Liver (fugu)

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No ‘little blue pill’? Don’t fret. Tuck into some raw pufferfish, whose lethal toxins allegedly provide horny Japanese businessmen with a helluva pick-me-up. (I guess lethal must mean something else there) Fortunately, the stringent requirements to become a fugu chef means diners likely won’t die eating blowfish at a reputable establishment, according to Nippon. Most fatalities are caused by amateurs taking a sake-soaked stab at the dish.

I was taken aback for a moment when they said tuck into upon doing my research, although at this rate I don’t know why I’d be surpised.

Avocado

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Turns out that the lifeblood of millennials is also a powerful aphrodisiac? Yeah that math checks out.

The fruit of the Aztec’s profoundly named “testicle tree” are a great source of phytosterols that stimulate sexual desire in men and women. It’s a wonder that our avocado toast-loving country has boasted the lowest birth rate in 30 years.  GO GUAC GO.

Oysters

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What Valentine’s aphrodisiac roundup would be complete without oysters? The magical mollusks were supposedly eaten at V-Day precursor Lupercalia, a Caligula-esque festival where the Romans donned animal skins and whipped each other in lieu of gifting chocolate and schmaltzy cards. Unfortunately, while the zinc in shellfish does boost sperm count, they’re not scientifically proven to foster carnal cravings.

Who isn’t down for a little slurp action with their partner in crime?

Chicken parm

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Many of us are well versed in parma sutra and all the wonders that it has to offer. A true Italian-American go to: chicken parmesan — a hunk of breaded poultry topped with tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese — is apparently like flypaper for single guys. (simps)

“Chicken parm guys find me. You don’t realize how many there are,” Carly Spiewak, 25, a market researcher, told The Post. “If the question had anything to do with food, a bunch of guys would be talking about chicken parm.”  Seems like a bit of a stretch Carls… but if she’s cooking I’m in.

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