No link of omega-3, vitamin E to libido
Q. I’ve suffered from vaginal dryness for several years and found a great help by accident. I started taking omega-3 and vitamin E capsules every morning to help with my dry skin.
Three weeks into this regimen, I noticed that 45 minutes after taking the vitamins I became sexually aroused and noticed that I was no longer suffering from vaginal dryness! What a great discovery! The supplements did nothing for my dry skin, though.
A. We have never heard about these supplements easing vaginal dryness or improving libido. A search of the medical literature turned up an old study in which 1,000 IU of vitamin E daily did not affect sexual arousal (Archives of Sexual Behavior, September 1979). More recently, a couple of noncontrolled Italian studies have examined vaginal application of formulations containing vitamin E, but that approach is quite different from yours.
Omega-3 fats found in fish or flaxseed oil are good for the cardiovascular system. We could find nothing to suggest they would improve sexual arousal.
Q. When I read your column about gin-soaked raisins, I recalled a similar remedy I used several years ago. I don’t like gin, and I wouldn’t buy it. But the man who told me about using gin-soaked raisins for tendinitis also said that, according to his own doctor, apple-cider vinegar worked just as well as gin.
The recipe I used very successfully to treat my tendinitis was golden raisins soaked in a combination of 2 parts apple-cider vinegar and 1 part honey (which kills the taste of the vinegar). Cover and soak for three days, and take about 10 raisins a day. The tendinitis gradually disappeared.
I had started on them before the doctor could figure out what was wrong with me. I was already getting some relief from the raisins that improved with physical therapy. The pain returned a bit when I stopped the raisins. Even my physical therapist was surprised at that.
Raisins in vinegar are no “cure-all,” but they are a big help. I think people who are not drinkers would like this alternative.
A. Thank you for offering this alternative to gin for the raisin remedy. Some people use rum instead of gin, while others have tried vodka or sloe gin. The raisins are the common denominator, though.
We have heard from many people that this remedy can help ease joint pain, tendinitis, bursitis, plantar fasciitis or other inflammatory problems. Anyone who would like more details on this and many other natural approaches to inflammation may wish to review our Guide to Alternatives for Arthritis. Please send $3 in check or money order with a long (No. 10), stamped (61 cents), self-addressed envelope to: Graedons’ People’s Pharmacy, No. AA-2, P.O. Box 52027, Durham, NC 27717-2027. It also can be downloaded for $2 from our Web site, www.peoplespharmacy.com.
Q. I’ve read about drinking tonic water to prevent waking with leg cramps. Try coconut water instead! It is the best stuff for leg cramps.
It is somewhat hard to find, but I buy the Zico brand at my local Fresh Market. Drinking 11 ounces gives me as much potassium as eating four bananas, and it is all-natural.
A. When we looked this new product up online, we discovered that, in addition to health-food stores, several major chains carry it as well. We appreciate your testimonial. We remind other readers, though, that too much coconut water might be constipating.