Top African Foods That Boost Fertility Hormones in Both Men and Women

Last updated on July 16th, 2023 at 06:16 am

10 minutes read.


Besides infection and environmental factors, there’s no doubt that your diet and lifestyle have a great influence on your fertility hormones.

Starting from the age of 25 or better before, you should begin to consider feeding on healthy foods that boost reproductive hormones whether you’re married or into a relationship or none of the above.

This help to prepare and keep your fertility hormones in good health at any time.

In Africa, there are selected foods our grandparents had fed on from time immemorial which is what helps them stay fertility fit even in their oldest age.

Some of these foods have been proven to possess such fertility-boosting power by modern-day research.

However, as you start this fertility diet journey, you need to avoid certain foods like highly processed foods and drinks, junk foods with a lot of artificial spices, excess sugar, and alcohol including hard drugs and smoking to make it more effective.

In this article, I will show you the top twenty African foods you may start to incorporate in your diet as often as you can to keep your fertility hormones in good health.

Top African food that boosts fertility

What’re the African foods to boost Libido?

  1. Banana

Why is that banana linked with sex?

Because naturally, bananas contain bioactive compounds that improve sex hormones in both males and females.

Bananas contain tryptophan, an amino acid used for serotonin production in the body, “you feel good hormones”.

Bananas are packed with potassium, used to produce sex hormones and improve heart health as well as sex drive.

One medium-ripe bananas contain about 450mg of potassium which help improve the production of testosterone hormone in men.

It is a male sex hormone that plays a vital role in improving your sex drive and helping you last longer in bed.

Studies show that many men lack magnesium and manganese. Banana is a rich source of magnesium and manganese.

Both of these minerals are fully functional for prostate health (small glands in the male pelvis that are part of the reproductive system) and promote reproductive health.

Banana is loaded with essential vitamins like A, B1, E, C, and antioxidant which help to boost hemoglobin (red blood cells) and reproductive hormones.

Bananas promote the production of healthier sperm and help increase sperm productivity. Also, it contains Bromelain, an enzyme that boosts sperm health.

And studies recommended that you should consume bananas in moderate quantities in order to derive their beneficial effects of enhancing male reproductive functions.

2. Tiger nuts

Tiger nuts also called earth almonds are incredibly healthy and have been consumed for their high zinc and fiber content. Although their fiber is insoluble hence it hardens stool when consumed in excess.

It is traditionally used in the Middle East to stimulate sexual arousal in men.

In Two animal studies, healthy rats were fed with raw tiger nut powder for 30 days. The result indicated that the serum testosterone levels increased significantly after tiger nut administration.

The study also revealed the presence of quercetin which is a unique compound found in onions that promote prostate health.   Vitamin C, and E, were also found in tiger nuts.

Research suggests that zinc plays an important role in modulating serum testosterone levels in normal men.

You can combine tiger nuts, coconut milk, and dates to make a drink (“kunu aya”) or add them to your baked goods. Eating one cup of tiger nuts twice a week may provide you with all you need to get from tiger nuts.

3. Dates

Dates fruits contain about 65 percent naturally occurring sugar. I call it my Instant energy booster.

Date fruits are very effective in promoting male and female fertility, possibly due to their high antioxidant activity. Fruits rich in antioxidants improve semen quality.

They are rich in antioxidants and are known to improve semen quality and promote the regulation of reproductive hormones.

Many research has shown that the components of phytoestrogens in the date fruit can regulate reproductive hormones in women.

Date fruit contains many minerals, hence it prevents anemia, helps the involution process of the uterus, and improves breast milk quality.

One study found that date extract could regulate fertilization, implantation, and early embryonic development through an antioxidant mechanism.

Between 1st February 2007 and 31st January 2008 at Jordan University of Science and Technology, a prospective study was carried out on 69 women who consumed six date fruits per day for 4 weeks prior to their estimated date of delivery, compared with 45 women who consumed none.

The women who consumed date fruit had significantly higher mean cervical dilatation upon admission compared with the non-date fruit consumers. And a significantly higher proportion of intact membranes

Spontaneous labour occurred in 96% of those who consumed dates, compared with 79% of women in the non-date fruit consumers.

The use of prostin/oxytocin (labour-inducing injection) was significantly lower in women who consumed dates (28%), compared with the non-date fruit consumers (47%).

The time of the first stage of labour was shorter in women who consumed date fruit compared with the non-date fruit consumers.

The study then concluded that the consumption of date fruit in the last 4 weeks before labour significantly reduced the need for induction and augmentation of labour, and produced more favourable labour. 

Hence the researchers said that a randomized controlled trial is needed.

One human study showed that Daily consumption of seven Ajwa dates per day for 8 weeks significantly reduces the risk of developing preeclampsia during pregnancy.

You can snack on them or add them to your baked goods.

4. Plantain

Plantain especially unripe type has been used as a special food to maintain sperm quality just like bananas. 

This is very popular among Nigerians and other African countries that grow plantain as a major food.

In Nigeria, Men have used unripe plantain cooked or roasted to induce, sustain and maintain penile erection.

It also helps to make semen thick and increases sperm volume.

Men who have used roasted plantain fruit testify it can be used to restore weak erection and low sperm count. It will be more effective if you cook them with onions and garlic.

However modern scientific human studies are lacking to back it up.

They are rich in potassium, magnesium, and resistant starch.

The result of one animal study reported that plantain should be consumed in moderate quantities in order to derive its beneficial effects of enhancing male reproductive functions.

Also, unripe plantain peel and ripe plantain peel had been reported to restore sex performance and erectile dysfunction in animal studies.

You can prepare plantain porridge with ginger, garlic, onions, and salmon.

5. Avocado

Avocado is an incredibly healthy fruit rich in healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals. The tree is also called a “testicular tree” due to its unique shape.

Human studies have shown that Avocados are loaded with vitamin E. Vitamin E is a key antioxidant that widens blood vessels, potentially lowering the risk for cardiovascular disease.

It may also reduce sperm DNA damage. It is rich in mono-saturated fats that ensure healthy ovum development and boost semen quality.

6. Gorontula (Snot Apple)

Gorontula (Azanza garckeana) is sometimes called African chewing gum because of its nature. They are rich in nutrients, vitamins, and minerals that enhance female reproductive hormones.

In Tula, Gombe State, Nigeria, the ripe fruit tonic is taken as a remedy for female infertility as documented by Ochokwu and co in the Journal of Biology, Agriculture and Healthcare in 2015.

In addition, one study on female rats, more recently reported similar results hence supporting the traditional use of the fruit on female fertility.

Another recent study (2022) demonstrated that Azanza garckeana fruit extract possesses significant aphrodisiac potentials in female Wistar rats.

Also in African Ayudeic medicine, the fruits have been effective against infertility and low sex performance in men.

7. Tomatoes

The biochemical compound (lycopene) found in tomatoes has been shown to improve fertility in both men and women.

The problem of oxidative stress, which affects sperm viability, motility, and DNA, have been tackled with lycopene supplementation in one 2014 study.

The result, therefore, concludes that regular consumption of tomatoes may protect you from Oxidative Stress.

One 2017 study showed that regular consumption of tomato juice may improve sperm motility in infertile patients.

It was the first report to show that commercially available food, such as tomato juice, might be beneficial for male infertility.

They are rich in vitamin C and lycopene – two important antioxidants that protect the sperm and eggs by fighting off free radicals.

One study very recent (2023) reported that using tomato paste to supplement Poultry feed may improve their reproductive performance.

8. Garden Egg

Garden eggs contain antioxidants, and vitamins including B vitamins.

Garden eggs including the leaves (eggplant) have been used in ancient African medicine to treat infertility and improve libido in both men and women.

The leaves and fruits of the small variety of local eggplant may even be more effective.

In one 2015 animal study, it was reported that eating garden eggs (eggplant) may help improve sperm motility and count. You may rip this benefit by eating eggplant often.

Another 2022 study found garden egg leaves and fruit extract may protect against ovarian dysfunction in female rats.  However human study is needed.

And you may reap this advantage by eating eggplant often.

You can snack on them, bake them, or make a stir-fry with veggies.

9. Leafy Green Vegetables

Dark leafy green vegetables are well known for their vitamin C and B vitamins components which build hemoglobin (red blood) and smoothen the removal of waste products from your intestinal.

The B vitamins provide you with folate (folic acid) which is highly needed especially during pregnancy.

Many women are interested in knowing how to use natural food to improve reproductive hormones unfortunately many clinicians(healthcare) have little or no knowledge on this.

Dark leafy greens such as pumpkin leaves (ugu and ugbogoro), spinach, ayara, awa, waterleaves, green,  jute (ewedu), lettuce, and broccoli are high in vitamin C and folate which promote both women’s and men’s reproductive hormones.

Folate also called folic acid is a B vitamin that enhances ovulation, and sperm production and prevents neural tube defects in newborns.

Research reviews have shown that constantly adding dark green vegetables to your food will not only promote and protect your reproductive hormones and will also improve your digestive health.

10. Garlic

Garlic is good for your health and can improve your sex drive. This is due to the presence of allicin in garlic, a compound, which increases the blood flow to the sexual organs in both men and women.

Both humans and animals have reported that consistently adding garlic and onions to your food will protect and promote your Prostate health.

They contain antioxidants that enhance sperm production and prevent oxidative damage to your organs.

One 2022 study found that consistent Consumption of garlic has a promising potent effect on polycystic ovarian syndrome.

If you cannot tolerate eating garlic raw, using it to cook food is the most convenient method to reap all the benefits. Scientists found that using both garlic and their skin to cook is even more beneficial to your health.

11. Onions

Research has shown that onion contains exogenous and endogenous antioxidants such as selenium, glutathione, vitamins A, B, and C, and flavonoids such as quercetin and isorhamnetin.

These antioxidants protect DNA and other important molecules from oxidation and damage, which would otherwise induce the removal of dead cells and could improve sperm health increasing the rate of fertility in men.

Another study (2012) reported that fresh juice of onion and ginger significantly improved sperm counts and sexual behavior in male rats.

It has been generally found that fresh onions or onions powder promotes testosterone in animals and some human studies have also supported this. Although more human clinical trial is needed.

Related: Here is How Onions and Garlic May Help Your Prostate Health

12. Oysters

Oyster has been reputed since ancient time to increase sexual performance. This myth has been around from time immemorial.

And modern scientific researchers have started to investigate this.

Oysters are said to increase libido but they are also great sources of zinc – an essential mineral needed for the production of good-quality eggs and quality sperm.

One 2013 study reported that local oysters have potential aphrodisiac efficacy and could be used as an alternative therapy to restore male sexual activity.

Modern studies show that oysters can improve male sexual function by inhibiting the activity of one enzyme called phosphodiesterase-5 (PDE5).

Other African foods that have been found to promote reproductive hormones in both men and women include:

14. Salmon

15. Beef Liver

16. Poultry and Eggs

17. Walnuts

18. Beans

Including cowpeas, pigeon peas, bambara nut(okpa), lentils, chickpeas, etc.

19. Maca root

20. Yam

21. Akamu (Ogi/corn pap)

22 Dark Chocolate/Cocoa

23. Alligator Pepper

Finally, replace most of your alcohol and soft drink with plain water.

Foods You Should Avoid.

To stay on top of the health of your reproductive hormones you need to avoid certain foods even from a younger age.

Such foods include:

  • Junk foods such as pizza, ice cream, biscuits, cake fatty fries, and sugary foods can impair fertility especially when consumed often.

Let most of your food be whole natural food or less processed food.

  • High-mercury fish

Mercury has been linked with infertility in both women and men. Examples of high mercury fish include; swordfish, king mackerel, tilefish, marlin, bigeye tuna, orange rough, and shark.

You can replace them with salmon, shrimp, or catfish.

  • Alcohol and hard drug

It is a good idea to limit alcohol consumption to one serving a day when trying to conceive. Because too much alcohol can decrease sperm count. Stop taking hard drugs if you do especially when trying to conceive.


Starting from the age of 25 or better before, you should begin to consider feeding on healthy foods that boost reproductive hormones whether you’re married or into a relationship or none of the above.

This help to prepare and keep your fertility hormones in good health at any time.

The top African fertility-boosting foods you may start to incorporate into your diet include:

  • Banana
  • Tiger nuts
  • Dates
  • Plantain
  • Avocado
  • Gorontula(snot apple)
  • Tomatoes
  • Eggplant (including the leave)
  • Dark Leafy green vegetable
  • Garlic
  • Onions
  • Oysters
  • Salmon
  • Beef liver
  • Poultry
  • Walnuts
  • Beans
  • Maca root
  • Yam
  • Akamu (corn pap)
  • Dark chocolate (cocoa)

As you feed on these foods you should try to reduce or avoid junk food, sugary food and drinks, highly mercury fish, alcohol, and hard drugs.

Try as much as you can to replace that food with whole-natural food and less processed food.  Replace most of your alcohol and soft drink with plain water.

I hope you get the value worth your time, I appreciate the time you spend with me. Leave a comment below if you find this article helpful and don’t forget to drop your question, opinion, or criticism if any. Cheers!


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