Tongkat ali is a herbal remedy that has been a part of traditional Southeast Asian medicine for centuries.
The drug is prescribed for a wide range of conditions, from fever to erectile dysfunction to bacterial infections.
Although preliminary research suggests that tongkat ali may improve body composition, reduce stress, and increase virility in men, more extensive studies are needed.
The advantages, disadvantages, and proper dosage of tongkat ali are discussed in this article.
Explain what tongkat ali is.
The green shrub tree Eurycoma longifolia is the source of tongkat ali, also known as longjack, a popular herbal supplement.
Traditional medicine practitioners in Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam, and other parts of Asia use it to treat malaria, infections, fevers, male infertility, and erectile dysfunction.
The plant’s beneficial effects are likely the result of a number of compounds.
Flavonoids, alkaloids, and other compounds in tongkat ali have antioxidant properties. Antioxidants are chemicals that neutralise free radicals, which cause damage to cells. They may have additional health benefits for your body.
Tongkat ali is most commonly consumed as an extract in pill form or in herbal drink form.
The Eurycoma longifolia shrub of Southeast Asia is the source of the herbal remedy known as tongkat ali. It is used to treat a wide range of medical issues, from male infertility to infections, and contains a number of therapeutically promising compounds.
Possible health gains
Although most of tongkat ali’s purported health benefits have not been thoroughly investigated, a few studies have shown promise in treating male infertility, enhancing mood, and building muscle.
Potential to elevate testosterone and stimulate sperm production in men.
Many studies have shown that men with low testosterone levels can benefit from taking tongkat ali because it raises testosterone levels.
Age, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, certain medications, testicular injury or infection, and a number of diseases, including chronic alcoholism and obstructive sleep apnea, can all lead to low testosterone levels.
Low libido, erection problems, and even infertility have all been linked to low testosterone levels. Since tongkat ali contains compounds that may increase low testosterone, it may be useful for treating these conditions.
Over 90% of 76 older men with low testosterone levels saw their levels return to normal after taking 200 mg of tongkat ali extract daily for a month.
In addition, tongkat ali has been shown to improve erectile dysfunction in men and increase sexual arousal in both animal and human studies.
Finally, tongkat ali may increase male fertility by increasing sperm motility and concentration.
The male partner in 75 infertile couples saw a significant increase in sperm concentration and motility after 3 months of taking 200 mg of tongkat ali extract daily. Over 14% of couples conceived with the aid of the treatment.
The average volume and motility of sperm were found to increase by 18% and 44%, respectively, after 12 weeks of treatment with 300 mg of tongkat ali extract in 108 men aged 30-55.
Although these studies suggest that tongkat ali can help treat low testosterone and infertility in some men, more thorough investigation into its effects is necessary.
The potential to reduce stress
As a result, tongkat ali has the potential to reduce stress hormones in the body, ease anxiety, and boost mood.
The potential use of tongkat ali extract in the treatment of mood disorders was first suggested in a 1999 study, which discovered that its effectiveness in alleviating anxiety-like behaviours in mice was comparable to that of a commonly used anti-anxiety medication (18Trusted Source).
Humans have shown similar effects, but data is scant.
Supplementing with 200 mg of tongkat ali extract daily reduced levels of the stress hormone cortisol in saliva by 16% compared to those who received a placebo in a study involving 63 adults with moderate stress for one month.
After using tongkat ali, participants also reported significantly reduced levels of stress, anger, and tension.
Although these findings show promise, additional research involving human subjects is required.
Possibility of a better body-fat percentage
Many people take tongkat ali because they’ve heard it can help them gain muscle and increase their stamina and speed during workouts.
Quassinoids, such as eurycomaoside, eurycolactone, and eurycomanone, are present, and they may help your body use energy more efficiently, reduce fatigue, and improve endurance.
What this means is that the supplement has the potential to serve as an ergogenic aid, a substance that can boost physical performance and alter body composition.
Those who took 100 mg of tongkat ali extract daily for 5 weeks saw greater gains in lean body mass than those who took a placebo during a strength training programme.
Also, they had greater fat loss than those in the placebo group.
In addition, a 5-week study in 25 physically active seniors found that supplementing with 400 mg of tongkat ali extract daily significantly increased muscular strength compared to a placebo.
One study found that cyclists who drank a tongkat ali-infused beverage while exercising did not outperform those who drank plain water.
More research is needed to sort out the possible ergogenic effects of tongkat ali, which have been shown to vary with dose and duration of treatment, as shown by these contradictory results.
In addition to increasing testosterone levels, tongkat ali has been shown in studies to reduce stress and anxiety, treat male infertility, and even increase muscle mass. More in-depth studies are still required.
Drugs, their potential adverse effects, and recommended dosage
Very few human studies have been conducted, but those that have found no negative effects from tongkat ali use.
Taken daily, tongkat ali extract at 300 mg was found to be as harmless as a placebo in one study.
In contrast, no studies have been conducted using doses of 1.2 grammes or more of tongkat ali extract, despite the fact that other studies have found this amount to be safe for adults. In addition, there are no long-term safety studies to indicate whether or not this supplement should be taken for extended periods of time.
In addition, of 100 tongkat ali supplements purchased in Malaysia, 26% contained mercury levels above the safe threshold found in the study.
Mercury poisoning occurs when too much mercury is consumed and is characterised by emotional swings, memory loss, and difficulty with motor skills.
Furthermore, there has been no study of tongkat ali’s effects on children or pregnant/lactating women. Therefore, it is questionable whether or not the treatment poses any risks to these groups.
Doses of 200–400 mg of tongkat ali daily appear to be safe for most healthy adults. It is unclear, however, if tongkat ali is safe for nursing or pregnant mothers. Mercury is a known contaminant and is also present in some dietary supplements.
Do you think you should take tongkat ali?
Although research is limited, some studies have shown that tongkat ali can help with anxiety and even help you look better naked.
It has the potential to treat male infertility, low testosterone, and low libido.
Limited research shows no negative side effects at 400 milligrammes per day of tongkat ali, but these studies only last a few weeks.
The supplements’ efficacy and safety after prolonged use remain unknown.
Consult your doctor before using tongkat ali.
Another thing to keep in mind is that some supplements may contain mercury. Further, they are not strictly regulated, so they could have different amounts of tongkat ali than what is stated on the label. Choose a tried-and-true brand recommended by experts.
Finally, because there is not enough data, tongkat ali should not be taken by pregnant or breastfeeding women. People who are already dealing with health issues or who are taking medications should also consult their doctor before starting tongkat ali.
Studies on the effects of tongkat ali on low testosterone levels, anxiety, and body composition are scant. You should talk to your doctor before beginning to take this supplement.
It has been suggested that taking tongkat ali, also known as longjack, can help with low testosterone levels, male fertility, anxiety, performance in athletics, and muscle growth and maintenance.
Despite this, data is scant.
Tongkat ali may help with a variety of health issues; if you’re interested in giving it a try, discuss it with your doctor and then seek out a high-quality brand in stores or online.