Tongkat Ali, also known as eurycoma longifolia, is a herb native to Southeast Asia, particularly in Malaysia and Indonesia. It is commonly used in traditional medicine to improve sexual function, enhance athletic performance, and increase energy levels.
The active compounds in Tongkat Ali are believed to be eurycomanone and quassinoids, which have been shown to have various health benefits such as reducing stress, improving mood, and boosting testosterone levels. Tongkat Ali is often marketed as a natural testosterone booster, although scientific evidence for its effectiveness is limited.
Tongkat Ali is typically consumed in supplement form, either as a powder or in capsules.
Why has Tongkat Ali become popular in the anti-aging community?
Tongkat Ali has been traditionally used in Southeast Asia as a natural remedy to help alleviate these symptoms and improve overall vitality.
However, Tongkat Ali has recently become popular in the anti-aging community due to its potential effects on testosterone levels and overall vitality with limited side effects. As men age, their testosterone levels naturally decline, which can lead to a variety of symptoms such as decreased muscle mass, reduced libido, and fatigue.
Can Tangkot Ali improve testosterone levels?
The peek of testosterone production in both men and women occurs between the ages of 20 and 30. As one progresses through the journey of life, a gradual yet inevitable decline in testosterone levels takes place, reducing by approximately 1-2% annually. By the time an individual reaches 50 years old, their testosterone levels are a mere fraction of what they once were, plummeting to 40-50%. A multitude of factors, including stress, diet, exercise, and sleep patterns, can lead to this decline. Sustaining youthful levels of testosterone can lead to advantages, such as improved muscle mass, heightened psychological and physical energy, and an overall enhancement of well-being.
In the past men have turned to TRT (Testosterone Replacement Therapy) to supplement their decreasing testosterone levels to look younger and feel healthier. However, the risk of serious side effects including increased risk of cardiovascular disease, prostrate disorders and enlarged male breasts were a large deterrent. The fact that Tongkat Ali may be able to provide the same benefits without the same risks is something to consider when looking to maintain high testosterone levels.
What does the science say?
Some preliminary research has suggested that Tongkat Ali may have potential anti-aging effects, including antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties as observed in a 2022 study published in the journal of Food and Agiricultural Immunoology. A 2018 study found that Tongkat Ali supplementation was associated with improved biomarkers of inflammation and oxidative stress in older adults. In addition, several studies have been conducted on Tongkat Ali to investigate its potential health benefits.
A 2012 study published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition found that Tongkat Ali supplementation was associated with significant improvements in muscle strength and body composition among men who were undergoing a resistance training program. Another study in 2013 found that Tongkat Ali supplementation was associated with reduced cortisol levels and improved mood among moderately stressed individuals.
Although evidence suggest that Tongkat Ali may have potential health benefits, more research is needed to confirm these findings and better understand the mechanisms by which Tongkat Ali exerts its effects.
Does Tongkat Ali improve energy levels?
Yes, Tongkat Ali is often used as a natural energy booster. It is believed to help increase energy levels by reducing fatigue and improving mood. Some research suggests that Tongkat Ali may help reduce stress hormone cortisol levels, which can contribute to feelings of fatigue and low energy.
Tongkat Ali is also sometimes used by athletes and bodybuilders to help improve physical performance and endurance, although scientific evidence for its effectiveness in this regard is limited.
It is important to note that, as with any supplement, the effectiveness of Tongkat Ali for increasing energy levels may vary depending on the individual and the specific product used.
Is Tongkat Ali safe to take as a supplement?
Yes, Tongkat Ali has been used for centuries in Southeast Asia as a natural remedy and is generally considered safe when taken in appropriate doses. However, as with any supplement, there are some potential side effects and risks to be aware of.
Common side effects of Tongkat Ali may include restlessness, anxiety, and insomnia, particularly if taken in high doses. It may also interact with certain medications, including blood pressure medications and drugs that affect liver function.
What is the suggested dose of Tongkat Ali?
The suggested dose of Tongkat Ali may vary depending on the specific product and the reason for use. However, typical doses used in clinical studies have ranged from 200 to 600 milligrams per day.
It is important to note that Tongkat Ali supplements may come in different concentrations and may be standardized to varying amounts of the active compounds. This means the appropriate dose may depend on the specific product being used.
It is always recommended to follow the dosing instructions provided on the product label or to consult a healthcare professional for guidance on the appropriate dose for your individual needs. They can help determine the appropriate dose based on factors such as age, weight, and any preexisting medical conditions.
Are there any side effects to taking Tongkat Ali?
While Tongkat Ali is generally considered safe when taken in appropriate doses, there are some potential side effects and risks to be aware of including restlessness, anxiety, and insomnia, particularly if taken in high doses. It may also interact with certain medications, including blood pressure medications and drugs that affect liver function.
By increasing testosterone levels Tongkat Ali may lead to some typical side effects such as acne, hair loss, and mood changes in some individuals. It is important to note that the safety of Tongkat Ali during pregnancy and breastfeeding has not been established, and it should be avoided during these times.
Finally, Tongkat Ali supplements may be adulterated with other substances, such as sildenafil (the active ingredient in Viagra), which can be dangerous, particularly for individuals with preexisting medical conditions.
Is Tongkat Ali suitable for women?
While Tongkat Ali is often marketed as a supplement for men, it may also have potential benefits for women. Tongkat Ali may benefit women through the activation the adrenal gland, pituitary gland, and ovary by producing hormones in the right amount that your body needs. This forms a vital part of a woman’s endocrine system. Most of Tongkat Ali’s benefits for women are realized from the effect of restoring total testosterone and releasing more free testosterone from Sex Hormone Binding Gobulin or SHBG.
Some preliminary research has suggested that Tongkat Ali may benefit female sexual function and mood. A 2020 study in the Food and Nutrition journal found potential improvement in hot flushes and hormonal and lipid profile of peri-menopausal and menopausal women.
Some situations where Tongkat Ali may benefit women include:
- If you are diagnosed with androgen deficiency (low testosterone or estrogen)
- As a pre-workout supplement to improve strength and anaerobic performance
- If you are experiencing stress and want to use it as a way to reduce cortisol levels
Does Tongkat Ali interfere with any other supplements?
Tongkat Ali may interact with certain supplements, particularly those that affect hormone levels or liver function.
Tongkat Ali may interact with supplements that affect testosterone levels, such as DHEA, tribulus terrestris, and fenugreek. Taking these supplements together may increase the risk of side effects such as acne, hair loss, and mood changes.
In addition, Tongkat Ali may interact with supplements that affect liver function, such as milk thistle and N-acetyl cysteine (NAC). Taking these supplements together may increase the risk of liver damage.
It is important to note that Tongkat Ali may also interact with prescription medications, particularly those that affect liver function or hormone levels. If you are taking any medications, it is important to consult a healthcare professional before taking Tongkat Ali or any other supplements.
Overall, while Tongkat Ali appears to be safe when taken in appropriate doses, it is important to be cautious with other supplements or medications and consult a healthcare professional for guidance.
What is the cost of Tongkat Ali?
The cost of Tongkat Ali supplements may vary depending on the brand, the concentration of the active compounds, and the form in which it is sold (such as powder or capsules). Generally, prices may range from around $10 to $50 for a one-month supply.
It is important to note that while the price may be a consideration when choosing a Tongkat Ali supplement, it is also important to prioritize quality and safety. Some cheaper supplements may contain lower quality or adulterated ingredients, which can be ineffective or even harmful. It is always recommended to purchase supplements from reputable sources and to consult a healthcare professional before taking any new supplement.
Tongkat Ali can be a natural and safe way to boost testosterone levels if taken in the right dosage as part of your daily supplement regime. The efficacy data points to an increase in energy, mood, and sexual function especially in males. It has shown to have limited side effects as long as it is taken at the right dosage and does not interfere with other medication. As always, please consult a healthcare professional before considering new supplements.