Yes, Diet Affects Your Sexual Health

Going vegetarian can lead to some surprising changes.

Portrait of Tammy Strobel

Going vegetarian can lead to some surprising changes.


Leafy greens are high in antioxidants like vitamin C that increase circulation and get your blood pumping. 


Eat certain foods, and you might notice an increase in libido, lubrication, and overall vaginal health, says Mary Rosser, director of the general ob-gyn division at Montefiore Health System in New York. “Avocados and root vegetables like sweet potatoes contain vitamin A, which may generate sex hormones, such as testosterone, that affect arousal. Dark leafy greens are rich in antioxidants, including vitamin C, beta-carotene, and polyphenols, that increase circulation and may make the vaginal wall healthier and more lubricated,” Mary says.


Veggie-focused diets tend to be higher in carbs than those that include meat and that may throw off vaginal pH, Mary says. “Eating too many carbs can make you more alkaline, which can lead to yeast infections or bacterial vaginosis,” she explains. Combat this with a daily serving of yogurt for a month or two after starting a vegetarian diet. “This will keep your vagina’s pH level stable during the transition to prevent infections,” she says.


Eating more plants means you’re getting more fibre. In addition to symptoms like bloating, which can affect arousal, your vaginal odour may also change, says Candice Candelaria, owner of Metabolic Zen, a nutrition counselling company that specialises in women’s health. “What you eat directly affects your body chemistry,” she explains. It should take about a month for your system to adjust and your scent to return to normal. In the meantime, Candice advises drinking plenty of water to speed up the process and cutting back on refined carbs and sugar, which can also affect odour.