Gondolosi otherwise known as the sausage tree is an age old aphrodisiac, which is basically a native to Malawi and of eastern Africa.

According to those that use the plant, there is one thing that distinguishes it from other known aphrodisiacs, “its” endowment properties.

The plant is a woody climber with large tuberous root stock, which is widely distributed in tropical Africa.

The plant has been used for generations to cure male infertility problems.

For the past few months there has been a surge of men in Bulawayo and perhaps the country that have been resorting to taking aphrodisiacs to please their partners, as they are reportedly suffering from sexual dysfunction caused by the waning economy.

Aphrodisiacs are substances that increase sexual desire or libido. A survey carried out by Sunday Life, assumed that there were growing numbers of men taking sexual aphrodisiacs, which are available in both traditional herbal and medicinal concoctions.

According to a female herbalist-cum-traditional healer that operates at certain market, said aphrodisiacs were a common feat in spicing up a sexual relationship, stating that there were some cases of women seeking treatment or aphrodisiacs to spice up their sexual lives.

“There are various herbal concoctions available. Lots of men have been coming here seeking these herbs. Most men that seek some of these aphrodisiacs are aged between 35 and above. We have also seen a few women coming to buy these aphrodisiacs,” she said.

Many men chew the root of godolosi when ever they have date.

“I occasionally chew it. I usually chew a small chunk of the plant if I know that I have a date. It works both ways, as in men and women,” one commented.

The plant  can also could be dried and ground into a powder, which could be taken as a herbal drink.

The particular aphrodisiac is derived from the sausage tree commonly known as gondolosi. It is widely believed to be some sort of herbal viagra. Some say it will enhance the size of the penis and instantly turn one into a “sex god’’.

According to a study there is a belief that the roots of the sausage tree, hold an elixir for penis enlargement.

However, Morgan Zimunya, the manufacturer of the Musimboti Nyama drink in Zimbabwe said gondolosi was used to treat various ailments that could lead to sexual dysfunction.

“We farm the plant and sell it to the public. Scientifically it is said to possess properties that can boost one’s sexual libido. Gondolosi is used to treat many ailments and illnesses. People tend to mistake the plant for an aphrodisiac. Sexual dysfunction is only a symptom of an illness,” he said.

Gondolosi is widespread across sub-Saharan Africa from Guinea to Kenya to Angola. In Kenya, the Luhya tribe calls it mukombela, or “love and forgiveness”, while in Cameroon it is called limte, and Angola, mundondo. Its scientific name is mondia whitei. It is a wild, high climbing vine with red-purple flowers and large heart-shaped leaves almost telling of its “romantic” qualities. The roots have a strongly pleasant aroma and a sweet enjoyable taste, rather hot and bitter at first then slightly sweeter later. People either chew the root or brew it as a tea.

Mondia whitei is a remedy for anything and everything not just sexual prowess — it’s a one stop pharmacy for a multitude of ailments — heartburn, indigestion, flatulence, gonorrhea, abdominal pain, constipation, bilharzia, premature uterine contractions in pregnant women, appetite stimulant, asthma, and high blood pressure.

Beyond its pharmacological capabilities, it is also nutritious having tested positive for micronutrients like vitamins A, D E and K, zinc, iron, magnesium, and calcium — so it’s a healthy turn on! (Pun intended). It’s not only good for people but animals too – as a valuable nutritious animal fodder, though it was unpalatable for goats, it increases milk production in Frisian cows and lactating mothers (yes, real human beings).

In addition to all these health benefits of the root, the leaves have even been used as a cooked vegetable, the roots as a culinary spice, and the seeds as an arrow poison. And last but not least, it has spiritual qualities bestowing luck on people who are about to embark on a difficult endeavour. Is there anything this plant can’t do?

In Malawi, gondolosi is believed to promote sexual arousal, enhance sexual performance, increase sensitivity, and cure erectile dysfunction in men. Mounting scientific evidence is proving that mondia whitei can attest to all its claims.

A 2008 study, found that mondia whitei increases human sperm motility. Sperm motility is considered an important characteristic of sperm — it describes the quality of the sperm, specifically its ability to move towards the egg.

Other research has shown that mondia whitei enhances libido by increasing testerone levels. More recently, it has been shown to have an effect on erectile dysfunction similar to sildenafil (viagra) which stimulates the release of nitric oxide which relaxes muscles, increases blood flow and causes erections.

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ZIMENE MUMAKONDA

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