Q: Dear Dr. Skye: I saw a segment on The Today Show about some great new foods that can help you with everything from aging and increased libido.  Can the cupuacu plant really help your sex life?  — Chad F., San Francisco, CA

A: Antioxidant-rich plants, such as the cupuacu from the rainforest, offer many benefits.  These include boosting your immune system and helping you feel more energetic — two things that can also increase your libido.  In contrast, being tired and/or under the weather can definitely decrease your sex drive.  So, if you can find cupuacu in your local health food store or market (in juice, concentrate, sorbet, etc), it would be a great addition to your diet.  Also consider yerbe mate, a tea-like drink that is even better for you than green tea.  And some studies show that pomegranate juice may improve erectile function.  So eating healthful foods can have a positive effect on your health — in and out of bed.

Q: Dear Dr. Skye: I overheard my boyfriend telling his friends he had a mancrush on Peyton Manning, the football player.  Do you think he’s bi-sexual? — Jerri G., Fort Lauderdale, FL

A: I’ll assume you’re asking if your boyfriend is bi-sexual, not Indianapolis Colts’ quarterback Payton Manning!  😉  While I have no way of knowing the sexual orientation of either man, I can reassure you that having a “mancrush” doesn’t make a guy bi or gay.  This is how UrbanDictionary.com defines mancrush: “A heterosexual man admiring another man to an extreme in a non-romantic or sexual way, more having an intense desire to be that other man.  As in, I have the biggest mancrush on Brad Pit.  I wish I could be him.”

Q: Dear Dr. Skye: A coffee shop opened in our town with young female employees dressed in skimpy nighties.  Don’t you think that’s gross? — Mary B., Las Vegas, NV

A: I saw a news story about Sexxpresso and its lingerie-clad staff.  It’s a Hooters-style marketing ploy that will probably be successful, at least at first.  The feminist in me, however, thinks the chain should have opened a second branch with shirtless hunks as eye-candy for female customers.  😉  I do have one public health concern, though.  In the Sexxpresso news story photos, the female employees seem to be reclining on work surfaces and getting touchy-feely with each other.  I’m not so sure I’d want my coffee prepared under such unhygienic conditions!

Q: Dear Dr. Skye: This can’t be true. A friend told me there are electronic games guys can play by using a urinal and hitting the right spot while peeing. — Jaycee R., New York, NY

A. It’s true and apparently a great way to improve men’s restroom hygiene. In the games, there’s a pressure-sensitive screen in the bottom of the urinal. If a man aims correctly, he can trigger an interactive game that supplies images and sounds through a small screen above the urinal. The cost of the equipment is supposedly offset by the savings on restroom cleaning costs. One version is a racing game, and if the man can’t control his car, a recording warns him about driving drunk. Ironically, the Belgium police recently banned such as game as indecent!

Q: Dear Dr. Skye: My boyfriend swears he’ll go bald if we don’t have sex all the time.  Isn’t this the stupidest thing you’ve ever heard? — Pattie H., Detroit, MI

A: One of the myths about baldness is that sexual frustration can cause hair loss.  While it’s true that stress can affect every part of the body, including hair follicles, there’s no evidence that sexual frustration will make a person’s hair fall out.  But I imagine a lot of women have pulled out their hair in frustration over lovers who try to manipulate them with this myth!


Definition of the Day

[Dr. Skye credits Urbandictionary.com for its wealth of interesting words and definitions you won’t find in Webster’s Dictionary.]

Today’s Urbandictionary.com term: Awkward Arm

Definition: The arm with nowhere to go when cuddling, spooning or sleeping next to someone else; a feeling that usually leads to a wish that the arms could be pulled off, then put back on.

Usage example:

“Uh-oh, it’s the return of awkward arm!” (after one tries to settle into a comfortable spooning position).

Q. Dear Dr. Skye: My grandmother hassles me for reading romance novels.  She says they fill women with false expectations of the perfect husband and marriage.  What do you think? — Kerri T., Oak Ridge, TN

A. There will always be people who put down romance novels.  I find it especially sad when the person doing the denigrating is a woman — since this empowering, feel-good genre fiction is written primarily by women for women.  As for romance novels giving women false expectations, I disagree.  In these novels, women fight for the love of a good man and refuse to settle for anything but a healthy marriage.  That’s a positive message.  In fact, when working with physically abused women, some therapists use romance novels for examples of a loving relationship — in and out of the bedroom.  Has your grandmother read any of the current crop of romance novels?  Maybe you should loan her one of your favorites and see if she’ll read it and discuss it with you afterwards.  It could be an enlightening experience for both of you!

Q. Dear Dr. Skye: My husband and I have retired and find that our sex drives have retired, too.  We would both like to make love more often, but the urge just isn’t there.  Is there anything you can suggest? — Mabel P., Lancaster, PA

A. There are many factors that can contribute to a decreased sex drive — including hormonal changes, health issues, and even the medicine used to treat your health issues.  Men can try Viagra or similar drugs, while some women have had success with low-dose testosterone creams.  But don’t underestimate the part the brain plays in arousal.  A willingness to change the sexual routine and try new things can add a spark to a relationship, as can unemotionally discussing libido problems and possible solutions with your spouse.  If you find it difficult to discuss sex with your husband, many couples benefit from working with a therapist.  To find one in your area, check out the Web sites of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (http://www.therapistlocator.net/index.asp) or the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists (http://www.aasect.org/directory.asp).

Q: Dear Dr. Skye: Is it true that redheads are hotter in bed? — Harry G., Lawrence, KS

A: The simple answer is “No”, but a German study has shown that redheads have sex more often than women who don’t have red hair.  Why?  One theory is that red is the color of passion, and men are attracted to what they see — at least subliminally — as a promise of sex.  The researcher in Hamburg, Germany, believes this interesting phenomenon is true whether the woman is a natural redhead or gets her auburn hair from a bottle.  But before anyone tries to corner the market on red hair dye, I want to point out that this is a single study of German women.  So unless you plan to also buy a plane ticket to Germany, I wouldn’t rush to empty your local Kroger shelves of Clairol or L’Oreal hair dye!

Definition of the Day

[Note from Dr. Skye: I receive lots of questions about slang, what a term means, its origins, how to use it, etc.  So I’ll occasionally post a definition vs. a Sex Q&A in this column for the entertainment of my readers.]

Today’s term: Stripper Wallet 

Definition: A wallet that contains only $20 and $1 bills.  This wallet can be carried by either a man or a woman.   Urbandictionary.com offers the following example of the term’s usage:

Man No. 1: “This thing won’t close!”

Man No. 2: “That’s ’cause you got $50 in ones in your stripper wallet.”