In high school, I once heard a classmate bragging about going down on his girlfriend. "She drank a Pepsi right before we started messing around and when I was licking her, I swear I could taste a hint of soda," he said. My eyes widened as I wondered what I tasted like.
Turns out, I don't really have a taste—at least, according to a former flame. "So I taste like water? A Perrier?" I was disappointed. Even though I don't drink soda, I too wanted to taste refreshingly sweet and effervescent.
"Every woman has a different normal flora, or set of bacteria specific to her body," says Chandra Adams, a Florida-based gynecologist. "Not all bacteria is odor producing, so it can be healthy whether or not the smell or taste is pleasing [or sweet]."
There isn't much science on the correlation between diet and taste of vaginal fluid, but the internet is flooded with personal testimonies and anecdotes—not to mention lyrics. (Rick Ross swears diced pineapples make his baby taste the best.)
An official study on sex fluids hasn't been done because there are too many variables that would make the results unreliable, says Abraham Morgentaler, a Boston-based physician. For instance: Who is doing the smelling and tasting for the study? Determining a specific taste of vaginal fluid or semen can be difficult because taste and smell are subjective; they vary from person to person. Morgentaler also notes that the risk of transmitting infections from subject to subject would make it hard for such a study to receive funding.
In the absence of that research, here's what we do know: Vaginal fluid is composed of mucus secreted by the cervix, cells, good bacteria, and transudate—filtered blood packed with polysaccharides, which contribute to the stickiness and thickness needed for lubrication.
And since polysaccharides and fructose are basically carbs with multiple sugar molecules, could a diet rich in complex sugars could make these sexy liquids taste better?
The first hole in that theory: Not all 'sugars' are sweet. "The foods highest in polysaccharides are breads, pastas, potatoes, and rice," Adams says. "Eating high concentrations of these foods can also affect the smell and taste of vaginal [fluids] because they could feed odor-producing bacteria."
On the flip side, I don't hear as much about men altering their diet to sweeten their semen the way women have spent time and energy on their fluids. Are men just not as vocal about it?
"[The women] who have commented said I taste great, I've always gotten good comments," says 28-year-old blogger Kahlil H. Although he and his friends don't necessarily discuss how to proactively enhance their flavor, they all know about the fruit myth. His group of amateur, albeit active, experts concur that while there doesn't seem to be a quick fix, if they get a rancid splooge report, then they most likely just need to consume a healthier diet.
Adams asserts that eating an abundance of fruit on a regular basis will keep the semen's pH normal and decrease the potential for a "bleach-like" flavor. For the men who buy out their local green market for this noble endeavor, though, it will not "sweeten" the taste. She also warns that a diet too rich in polysaccharides is actually detrimental to men—it can increase the growth of candida (aka yeast).
"An increase in the availability of these sugars promotes candidal growth to a pathologic extent, creating a yeast infection," Adams explains. "Men can either acquire a yeast infection from sex with a woman who already has one, or they can develop their own. Their symptoms are similar to a woman's—burning, itching, and/or a thick, lumpy discharge—seen most commonly in uncircumcised men."
So a dude with the sweetest of intentions can potentially flip the outcome on its, er, head.
But back to my parts. It has been proven that the consumption of specific foods can be beneficial to various parts of the body the way iron-rich kale can help red blood cells, and calcium can be essential to strong teeth. I inquired about a bodily fluid superfood—one that boosts overall health enough so that it's like a meadow of morning dew-bedazzled magnolias down there.
"This part of the body works just fine by itself. The vagina has evolved to take good care of itself, and doesn't usually need any additional help," says Morgentaler. A balanced diet will certainly help, but there's no one magical food that will help in the way I envision, he says.
Since there is no concrete data proving whether pineapples—or any foods, for that matter—can sweeten the taste of sex fluids, how is it possible that so many couples have raved about its effects? Stephen Snyder, a New York City-based sex therapist, has one theory: "The placebo effect," he says, "tends to be robust when it comes to sex."
In other words, if your partner thinks pineapples make you taste sweeter, then telling them you just ate some might be all the convincing they need.