Damiana is a shrub native to Central and South America. It belongs to the family Turneraceae. Blooming with small yellow flowers, the shrub has an odor somewhat like chamomile and the leaves have traditionally been made into a tea which was used by native people of Central and South America for its reputed aphrodisiac effects.
|County of Origin||Mexico|
|Therapeutic Properties||Aphrodisiac, diuretic, tonic, insecticide, antiseptic, stimulating to the immune system and circulation.|
|Approx. Shelf Life||5 years|
|Plant Parts||Flower & leaf|
|Method of Extraction||Steam Distilled|
|Blends well with||blends especially well with other herb oils like Rosemary or Thyme as well as with Lavender, Vetiver, Ylang Ylang, Aniseed and Palmarosa.|
History: Turnera Diffusa is the botanical name of the plant more commonly known as damiana. The Turnera genus is made up of over 10 species, which are in turn part of the Turneraceae family and is made up of over 100 species and 10 genera. The plant has also been referred to as Turnera aphrodisiac or turnera diffusa var. aphrodisiac. These references to aphrodisiac in the name, are based on the fact that Turnera diffusa has a long history of being used as an aphrodisiac.
Turnera diffusa is thought to have originated in Central America. It can now be found growing wild in Central America, Mexico, South America, West Indies, and parts of the south-western USA. Plants require a hot climate and they can be found in their greatest concentrations in Baja California and Northern Mexico.
Turnera diffusa grows into a small perennial (lives more than two years) shrub that can reach a height of 3-6 feet tall. The leaves have an aroma similar to that of lemon. The stems are upright with small yellow flowers that produce sweet smelling fruit.
A drink made with damiana has been used in central Mexico for thousands of years as an aphrodisiac, and for centuries, the spiritual and mystical application of damiana have long been recorded in Central American folk lore. The Mayan Indians utilized the leaves of the Turnera diffusa plant by making them into a drink and adding sugar to sweeten it. Then it was drunk for its power to enhance lovemaking. It was also consumed in some Latin American countries as a dietary supplement.
For medical purposes, in addition to being utilized as an aphrodisiac and for treating conditions related to the reproductive organs, Turnera diffusa has been used as an anti-depressant, cough suppressant, diuretic, laxative, and as a tonic.
Characteristics: Damiana essential oil is rich, warm, and sweet with a very slightly bitter undertoneClinical Studies:
Mode of Administration: In massage Damiana may be used as part of a sensual blend diluted in either a carrier oil or a base lotion or cream. It may also help to calm and soothe in times of stress. It's burned or vaporized for the same reasons and also to relieve anxiety or stress. It's also a lovely oil to add to a bath - especially as part of a sensual routine. Just add 2-3 drops to a tablespoon of milk to help the oil disperse in the water. Add under the running taps and give the bath a good swish round to help it disperse effectively.
Safety: May contain estrogole. May cause a drop of the blood sugar.