Tribulus terrestris is a health supplement with the ability to balance hormone levels in the human body. It is also called puncture vine, and is derived from an herb that, for centuries, has been part of traditional Chinese and Indian medicine. Although it has been widely used since ancient times in Eastern culture, its success in Western markets came later. Tribulus became popular in North America in the eighties and nineties when it was said that Eastern European Olympic athletes were taking the herb to help improve their performance in sports.
Compounds known as steroidal saponins are the active ingredients responsible for the effects of tribulus terrestris. There are two types: furostanol glycosides and spirostanol glycosides. Found mainly in the leaves of the herb, these compounds are involved with the various health benefits of tribulus terrestris.
The Benefits of Tribulus Terrestris
The common indications for the use of tribulus terrestris include infertility, erectile dysfunction, and low libido. This health supplement is not only involved with sexual health, though. Similarly, it is used by bodybuilders to stabilize their hormones after post cycle therapy and by sports people to improve their athletic performance.
Several studies have demonstrated that tribulus raises the levels of luteinizing hormone in the body, which in turn regulates testosterone levels. It also increases the levels of the hormones DHEA and estrogen.
One of the positive effects of increased testosterone levels is enhanced libido. By improving sex drive, tribulus terrestris supplements have been reported to treat erectile dysfunction, which is often associated with decreases in testosterone.
Body Composition and Exercise Performance
Another popular use for tribulus supplements has to do with muscle building and strength enhancement. Bodybuilding champion Jeffrey Petermann popularized the muscle-building potential of tribulus terrestris extract in the early 1970s. Since then, numerous studies have been conducted to test the effects of tribulus on muscle growth and athletic performance.
The results of scientific research have been varied, but many athletes and bodybuilders who incorporate tribulus supplements in their diet have reported positive results. These claims are most likely due to the increase in testosterone levels, which causes an improvement in sexual performance and muscle growth.
The great thing about using tribulus extract for improving sports performance is that athletes will not have to suffer any negative effects such as those associated with steroid use, since tribulus terrestris is a natural herbal supplement.
The importance of the hormone testosterone to the body is best demonstrated by the negative effects caused by its deficiency. Obesity, depression, heart disease, osteoporosis, and loss of muscle tissue are all linked to decreased testosterone levels in the body. Stress and aging are the common factors involved in this decrease, and because it is common for people to be stressed and to age, testosterone deficiency follows.
The supplementation of testosterone can be as simple as taking tribulus terrestris as a part of your diet. With tribulus supplements, testosterone levels are stabilized, which yield many health benefits like improved mood, enhanced sexual health, and even better circulation and optimized delivery of nutrients to various body tissues.