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By Reviewed by Published on September 23, 2018 Updated on November 16, 2018
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Tongkat Ali

This is a medicinal plant native to some countries in southeastern Asia. Tongkat ali has been used in folk medicine for many centuries to manage a number of conditions in both men and women. It has been found to contain properties that may contribute immensely to the treatment of testosterone deficiency, malaria, erectile dysfunction, low sperm count, obesity, hypertension, oxidative stress, cancer and much more. Also, it has been found to be beneficial in regulating important hormones, improving mood state, increasing energy, providing quick stress relief, increasing muscle mass, and improving the overall quality of life.

Tongkat ali is a long-known herbal remedy that has aided many of the health issues that we face today. However, it seems that lately there has been a lot of talk on the topic of tongkat ali.

There are many uses of tongkat ali. As people hear about tongkat ali for the first time and all of its possible uses, they decide to dig deeper to try to find out exactly what tongkat ali root is. One of the most well known uses of tongkat ali is perhaps its use to treat sexual disorders among men. This focuses on erectile dysfunction and low testosterone problems, especially the causes that lead to these occurrences. That is why we decided to create a comprehensive guide to tongkat ali. We hope this will give you the answers that you have been looking for.

What is Tongkat Ali Root?

Tongkat ali is a plant native to few countries in South-East Asia including Malaysia, Indonesia, and Thailand. It is grown in smaller quantities in Laos, Vietnam, and India. The plant also referred to as Eurycoma longifolia, Pasak Bumi, or Long Jack is a tall medicinal plant traditionally used in these regions for its aphrodisiac, anti-estrogen and pro-erectile properties.

This herb is a small flowering tree in the family of Simaroubaceae and genus Eurycoma. It is a slender, unbranched plant and can grow up to 10 meters tall. For centuries, the herb was used in folk medicine as an energy enhancer and tonic in order to increase libido, build muscle, increase sperm count, and to enhance the size of male sex organs.

Decades ago, tongkat ali root was ground into a smooth paste that was then boiled over a low heat for a short period of time. The liquid from the boiled root of the plant was then offered as an herbal remedy for the above-mentioned conditions. In more recent times, tongkat ali has grown to be widely accepted and used across the globe for treating conditions like low testosterone, infertility, and low libido, just to name a few.

Due to advancements in technology, the herb is now extracted in large quantities using facilities that meet the required standards and through a process that is completely controlled. This has made it possible to manufacture a refined and medically safe water-soluble powder that can be added into a diet, encapsulated to serve as a supplement or even used as additives in food and beverages. This, of course, creates an opportunity for you to experience the many beneficial effects of tongkat ali to aid whatever problems you might be facing.

The best processes through which the extract of tongkat ali root is manufactured ensures that the natural composition and efficacy of the herb is retained. Different parts of the plant serve numerous purposes for people, but the root of the plant is believed to be the most beneficial for medicinal purposes.

This is because the leaves and the stems, even if they contain medicinal properties, may be toxic as opposed to the root which is non-toxic and safe for the purposes for which it is used. Although several animal and a few human studies have proven that this herb is safe, natural and potent in treating and preventing the conditions mentioned above, the continued need for additional studies related to the efficacy, safety, and benefits of the herb are ongoing.

Due to the potential efficacy of the herb in treating conditions relating to sexual health, tongkat ali has been referred to as “Herbal Viagra” by those who have used it. You probably have heard about Viagra – the popular drug that enables you to achieve and maintain a healthy erection during sex. Knowing that, you can guess why tongkat ali is referred to as “Herbal Viagra” then, right?

However, it is also important to state that tongkat ali contains other properties that may make it a suitable treatment for malaria, slow metabolism, stress, and even anxiety. Yes, that is true – despite having the role of an “Herbal Viagra”, tongkat ali is found to be beneficial when used for other common health issues as well. In fact, you might be surprised to hear how beneficial this herb can actually be. To tell you the truth – even true believers and followers of today’s modern medicine cannot deny the true power that tongkat ali has. In this post, we will discuss the many benefits that tongkat ali has to improve your health.

Common Names of Eurycoma Longifolia (Tongkat ali)

Eurycoma longifolia is known by many names in different regions around the world. For instance, the plant is known as “Long Jack” in the United States. In Malaysia, tongkat ali has many names including Payong ali, Bedara Merah, Tongkat Baginda, Bedara Putih, Muntah Bumi, Penawar Bias, Petala Bumi, Penawar Pahit, and Lempedu Pahit.

In Thailand, Eurycoma longifolia is called plaa lai phuenk, hae phan chan, lan-don, phiak, and tung saw. In Indonesia it is called Malaysian ginseng, bidara lau, in Laos – tho nan, in Vietnam – cây bá bệnh, in Japan – babi kurus and in Bahrain – langir siam. Other common names of the herb are wonod mondou, payung ali, and umpudumaidu.

tongkat ali plant

Most of these common names for tongkat ali reflect the bitter but beneficial nature of the herb. In Malay, Penawar Pahit is translated as “bitter medicine” or “bitter charm.” The name of the plant in some regions also reflects its physiology.

For example, the common name of this superfood in the South-East Asian region “Pasak Bumi” and “Tongkat ali” has been modified to reflect the color of the root and the bark of the plant which is white/yellow-ish hence “Tongkat ali/Pasak Bumi Putih” or “Tongkat ali/Pasak Bumi Kuning” a red-ish variety of the herb is referred to as “Tongkat ali/Pasak Bumi Merah.” Another similar species of the plant known as Polyalthia Bullata is referred to as “Tongkat Ali/Pasak Bumi Hitam” because of its darker appearance.

What are the Components of Tongkat Ali? (Composition)

Tongkat ali is famous for its amazing benefits, but it is important to note that the reason for this is because of the chemical components of the roots, leaves, and stems of the plant. The herb contains several rich bioactive compounds including eurycolactone, eurycomaoside, pasakbumin-B, eurycomanone, eurycomalactone, and many more.

However, the major chemical components of tongkat ali are alkaloids and quassinoids. Alkaloids are found to offer both antibacterial and anticancer benefits for people who consume food and supplements that contain it and quassinoids offer antiulcer, anticancer, and antiparasitic benefits to its users. [1]Khanam, Z., Wen, C. S., & Bhat, I. U. H. (2015). Phytochemical screening and antimicrobial activity of root and stem extracts of wild Eurycoma longifolia Jack (Tongkat ali). Journal of King Saud University-Science, 27(1), 23-30. doi.org/10.1016/j.jksus.2014.04.006

A study conducted on the components of this herb found that tongkat ali contains 65 chemical compounds. The researchers added that some of the quassinoid diterpenoid compounds including eurycomalide B, 13β, 21-dihydroxyeurycomanol, eurycomalide A and 5α, 14β, 15β-trihydroxyklaineanone, were reported for the first time from natural sources. [2]Mohamed, A. N. (2015). Review on Eurycoma Iongifolia Pharmacological and Phytochemical. Journal of Applied Science, 15(6), 831-844. DOI: 10.3923/jas.2015.831.844

These compounds were also found via in-vitro trials, to have antimalarial and antiviral benefits. In addition, the authors found that compounds 57 and 58 were shown to have effective antimalarial benefits against the resistant parasite Plasmodium falciparum. Compounds 12, 13, 17, 38, 57, 58, and 59 showed strong cytotoxicity to breast cancer (MCF-7) cell lines, while 12, 13, 17, 18, 36, 38, 59, and 62 exhibited strong cytotoxicity to lung cancer (A-549) cell lines.

How Tongkat Ali Works

Tongkat ali has been used for centuries to manage the symptoms of many health conditions in both young and old individuals. The herb may be beneficial in enhancing sexual performance, regulating the levels of testosterone in the body, and even increasing muscle mass. How tongkat ali works is amazing and it is able to offer these benefits because of its aphrodisiac, antiviral, antibacterial, antimalarial, and antipyretic properties.

Tongkat ali has numerous active chemical components. The chief ones include alkaloids, quassinoids, and eurycomalactone. These phytochemicals are believed to be active agents in stimulating the increase of testosterone levels in the body. It is believed that these chemicals are what has made this herb a famous option for treating low testosterone and other sexual dysfunction in both males and females. [3]Rehman, S., Choe, K., & Yoo, H. (2016). Review on a traditional herbal medicine, Eurycoma longifolia Jack (Tongkat ali): its traditional uses, chemistry, evidence-based pharmacology and toxicology. Molecules, 21(3), 331. doi.org/10.3390/molecules21030331

Tongkat ali may aid in improving gut health by decreasing excess acid in the stomach and preventing the development of ulcers. [4]Ahmed, A., Tan, C. L., Jatau, A. I., Lua, P. L., Jofrry, S. M., Abdullah, A. H., & Wong, T. W. (2017). Consumption of herbal products: a study of urban community survey. Australasian Medical Journal (Online), 10(2), 124. doi.org/10.21767/AMJ.2017.2797 In addition, the herb also helps to prevent the development and spread of cancer by inhibiting the activities of NF-κB and stimulating the death of cancer cells in those individuals diagnosed with this condition. [5]Tran, T. V. A., Malainer, C., Schwaiger, S., Atanasov, A. G., Heiss, E. H., Dirsch, V. M., & Stuppner, H. (2014). NF-κB inhibitors from Eurycoma longifolia. Journal of Natural Products, 77(3), 483-488. Retrieved from https://pubs.acs.org/doi/pdf/10.1021/np400701k

This herb, if consumed on a regular basis, may be beneficial in preventing and treating male osteoporosis by promoting the growth of bone cells as well as the production of collagen. [6]Thu, H. E., Mohamed, I. N., Hussain, Z., & Shuid, A. N. (2017). Exploring molecular mechanism of the bone-forming capacity of Eurycoma longifolia: Evidence of enhanced expression of bone-related biomarkers. Journal of Ayurveda and Integrative Medicine, pii: S0975-9476(17)30007-4. doi: 10.1016/j.jaim.2017.04.005 It also stimulates the activities of the enzyme known as ALP (alkaline phosphatase), which helps in the development of teeth and bones. [7]Thu, H. E., Mohamed, I. N., Hussain, Z., & Shuid, A. N. (2017). Eurycoma longifolia as a potential alternative to testosterone for the treatment of osteoporosis: Exploring time-mannered proliferative, differentiative and morphogenic modulation in osteoblasts. Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 195, 143-158. doi.org/10.1016/j.jep.2016.10.085

How tongkat ali works to provide the numerous health benefits is explained further below.

Health Benefits of Tongkat Ali Root Extract

Tongkat ali is an herb that has an array of benefits to offer to its users. For centuries, the plant has been used in South-East Asian countries for medicinal conditions such as low libido, erectile dysfunction, diabetes, cancer, stress, and anxiety. Although the herb has been primarily used to treat conditions related to sexual health in men, it has been found that extract from the root may also be beneficial for similar conditions in women.

Today, this herb has grown in both usage and acceptability. Studies are being published on a daily basis and many are ongoing with regard to the safety and efficacy of the herb in humans. Emerging information has revealed that tongkat ali root extract may have a lot to offer when it comes to treating several modern-day maladies. Here are a few general health benefits of tongkat ali.

Does Tongkat Ali Boost Testosterone?

Many people ask, does tongkat ali boost testosterone? It is believed that tongkat ali is a testosterone booster for men, but this herb is commonly used to maintain healthy levels of the hormone in both men and surprisingly in women as well. [8]Henkel, R. R., Wang, R., Bassett, S. H., Chen, T., Liu, N., Zhu, Y., & Tambi, M. I. (2014). Tongkat ali as a potential herbal supplement for physically active male and female seniors–a pilot study. Phytotherapy Research, 28(4):544-50. doi: 10.1002/ptr.5017 This herb contains chemical compounds like eurycoma lactone and eurycomanone, which are active agents in stimulating testosterone production. [9]Abirame, S., Sivakumar, K., Chua, L. S., & Sarmidi, M. R. (2016). Preliminary studies on the extraction of glycospanonins in Tongkat ali extract. IOP Conference Series: Earth and Environmental Science, 36(1): 012062. IOP Publishing. doi:10.1088/1755-1315/36/1/012062

Testosterone is the main sex hormone in men and an unhealthy level of it may lead to different conditions relating to both sexual and overall life activities. [10]George, A. & Henkel, R. (2014). Phytoandrogenic properties of Eurycoma longifolia as natural alternative to testosterone replacement therapy. Andrologia, 46(7):708-21. doi: 10.1111/and.12214 The normal level of testosterone naturally starts to decline when a man attains the age of 30, and it is reported that at about 45-60 years old, most men will have only half of the testosterone level they had during their youthful days.

This invariably means that by the age of 60 (or earlier) you will have about half of the general performance you were able to attain in your 20s. However, there may be a way to ensure that your testosterone levels remain at a peak even when you grow older. Tongkat ali may be prescribed for sexual health, as it can help to regulate and boost the level of testosterone in both healthy men and those who are suffering from low levels of testosterone due to one reason or another. [11]Kotirum, S., Ismail, S. B., & Chaiyakunapruk, N. (2015). Efficacy of Tongkat ali (Eurycoma longifolia) on erectile function improvement: Systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Complementary Therapies in Medicine, 23(5), 693-698. doi.org/10.1016/j.ctim.2015.07.009

It is when the testosterone declines to quite low levels that certain changes and symptoms start to develop. Because we are talking about the main male reproductive hormone, it is easy to understand the changes that follow testosterone decline. Loss of hair, muscle mass, muscle strength, decreased libido, erectile dysfunction, sleep problems, and depression are just a few of the most common changes that a man experiences due to a drop in testosterone levels. [12]George, A. & Henkel, R. (2014). Phytoandrogenic properties of Eurycoma longifolia as natural alternative to testosterone replacement therapy. Andrologia, 46(7):708-21. doi: 10.1111/and.12214

You see, there is a really good reason or should we say reasons as to why tongkat ali is considered to be a great aphrodisiac and it is referred to as the “Natural Viagra”. Remember this – tongkat ali is probably the most effective testosterone booster that is at the same time, natural and beneficial for the whole body.

How Does Tongkat Ali Increase Testosterone?

To further examine how this herb works to boost testosterone, it is important to state how the body regulates the level of this hormone. The total amount of the testosterone produced by the body is regulated by a process known as the HPG axis (Hypothalamic Pituitary Gonadal axis).

GnRH (Gonadotropin-releasing hormone) is produced by the body’s hypothalamus (located in the brain) and acts as a messenger to tell other hormones what to do. When testosterone levels are below the normal range, GnRH is released, it travels to the pituitary gland and stimulates the release of gonadotropins.

The pituitary gland then releases LH (Luteinizing hormone) that travels to the testes and binds with the Leydig cells within the testes. Through a series of chemical reactions, cholesterol (LDL) is converted to testosterone. Testosterone is then released into the bloodstream.

This testosterone then travels to other places in the body like the liver, muscles, fat, bone, testicles, brain and skin. Here it binds with special cells to carry out the desired effect. [13]Acevedo‐Rodriguez, A., Kauffman, A.S., Cherrington, B. D., Borges, C. S., Roepke, T. A., & Laconi, M. (2018). Emerging insights into Hypothalamic‐pituitary‐gonadal (HPG) axis regulation and interaction with stress signaling. Journal of Neuroendocrinology, 3(10), e12590. doi.org/10.1111/jne.12590

When tongkat ali root extract is ingested, it stimulates the hypothalamus gland to release GnRH. The herb causes the body to do this regardless of the existing level of testosterone in the body. The newly released GnRH then automatically triggers the natural production of testosterone as already described. The level of the testosterone may gradually increase if you continue to take tongkat ali root extract for an extended period of time.

This is unlike other testosterone boosting pharmaceutical drugs that function only to stimulate your Leydig cells to produce more testosterone. which usually causes these cells to stop producing the hormone after a short period of time.

This means that this herb can provide a non-pharmaceutical way for the body to naturally produce more testosterone. Tongkat ali root extract has also been shown to inhibit the production of a protein known as sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG). This protein is produced by the liver and functions to bind with testosterone, and renders it inactive. By reducing the amount of SHBG in the blood, this increases the amount of free testosterone in your body. This is the testosterone that is active. [14]Gyawali, P., Martin, S.A., Heilbronn, L.K. Vincent, A. D., Taylor, A. W. … Wittert, G. A. (2018). The role of sex hormone-binding globulin (SHBG), testosterone, and other sex steroids, on the development of type 2 diabetes in a cohort of community-dwelling middle-aged to elderly men. Acta Diabetologica, 55, 861. doi.org/10.1007/s00592-018-1163-6

The herb allows important hormones to perform their complete functions freely and makes the body become more accustomed to this fact after some time. This is the reason why it is more effective if taken for a longer period of time. For instance, test results used to check the relationship between tongkat ali and testosterone after 1 week showed an impressive result but after 6 weeks the test results are even better. [15]Khanijo, T. & Jiraungkoorskul, W. (2016). Review ergogenic effect of long jack, Eurycoma Longifolia. Pharmacognosy Reviews, 10(20),139. doi:10.4103/0973-7847.194041

The main reason why it is advised to take this root extract in regular intervals is that the level of testosterone will gradually and steadily increase until the desired level is attained if the release of GnRH is repeated over and over again.

Testosterone Booster for Men with Late-Onset Hypogonadism

Tongkat ali may be effective in treating, preventing and alleviating the symptoms of late-onset hypogonadism. This is a condition that is prevalent in older men, men that are obese and in men that have other serious medical conditions or are in poor health. Late-onset hypogonadism (LOH) is characterized by a significant reduction in the level of testosterone as well as sexual dysfunction like decreased libido, erectile dysfunction, and spontaneous erections. [16]Dudek, P., Kozakowski, J., & Zgliczyński, W. (2017). Late-onset hypogonadism. Przeglad menopauzalny = Menopause review, 16(2), 66-69. doi:10.5114/pm.2017.68595

The condition often occurs because of a gradual reduction in the level of testosterone in the body. After the age of 30, the level of testosterone gradually begins to decline and may continue to do so as a person grows older. At about 60-70 years, a man may have lost more than half of the testosterone he had during his youthful age. Late-onset hypogonadism naturally results from the steady decline in the levels of testosterone in older men.

A study published in Andrologia found that tongkat ali for late-onset hypogonadism may be beneficial as it improves the symptoms of the condition in individuals suffering from it. The research was conducted on 76 participants diagnosed with the condition. The study authors administered 200 mg of standardized tongkat ali root extract to the participants for a month. The findings of the study revealed that the herb led to a significant improvement in the levels of testosterone and other symptoms associated with male aging.

Another study published in 2016 and conducted on the efficacy of tongkat ali for hypogonadism, found that the herb led to a significant increase in the level of testosterone n the participants. [17]Abirame, S., Sivakumar, K., Chua, L. S., & Sarmidi, M. R. (2016). Preliminary studies on the extraction of Glycospanonins in Tongkat Ali extract. IOP Conference Series: Earth and Environmental Science, 36(1): 012062. IOP Publishing. doi:10.1088/1755-1315/36/1/012062 The researchers concluded by stating that the herb may be beneficial in alleviating the symptoms of LOH and the proper management of the condition.

Tongkat Ali for Muscle Building

increase testosterone with tongkat ali

Tongkat ali may also serve as an active agent when it comes to increasing muscle mass, strength, and stamina. This may be due to the efficacy of the root extract for increasing the level of testosterone in the body. The tongkat ali benefits for muscle building and fitness are the reason why the herb is famous among individuals who live an active lifestyle, and for fitness professions, weightlifters, and bodybuilders. [18]Talbott, S. M. (2019). Human performance and sports applications of Tongkat Ali (Eurycoma longifolia). In Nutrition and Enhanced Sports Performance. 729-734. Academic Press. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-12-813922-6.00063-1

This means that tongkat ali extract may also be used to enhance fat loss in the body as well as improve athletic performance in both men and women. Several studies have found that the herb may offer this benefit but human trials on the topic are limited. A preliminary study conducted on the efficacy of tongkat ali, found that the extract may be beneficial for increasing muscle mass, stamina, and strength in women who were participating in intensive strength training programs. [19]Yusof, S. M., Zakaria, Z., Karim, A. A., Aiman, S., & Kadir, Z. (2016). Enhancement Effects of Tongkat Ali (Eurycoma longifolia) Supplementation on Performance Functions Following Strength Training in Middle-Aged Women. In Proceedings of the 2nd International Colloquium on Sports Science, Exercise, Engineering and Technology, (ICoSSEET 2015) 3-13. Springer, Singapore. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-287-691-1_1

The study participants consumed only 100 mg of tongkat ali daily for about twelve weeks. The study was published in the Proceedings of the 2nd International Colloquium on Sports Science, Exercise, Engineering and Technology 2015. Other studies on this topic have shown similar results, plus the fact that the herb may be effective in reducing recovery time after stressful workouts.

Furthermore, a preliminary study conducted on tongkat ali for muscle building was published in 2014 in Phytotherapy Research, found that this herb may be active in boosting muscular strength in older individuals whose strength has naturally declined due to their age. The study was conducted on men and women who were between the ages of 57 and 72 years. [20]Henkel, R. R., Wang, R., Bassett, S. H., Chen, T., Liu, N., Zhu, Y., & Tambi, M. I. (2014). Tongkat Ali as a potential herbal supplement for physically active male and female seniors—a pilot study. Phytotherapy Research, 28(4), 544-50. https://doi.org/10.1002/ptr.5017

The researchers administered 400 mg of tongkat ali daily to the participants. In addition, they found that there was a significant increase in the level of free testosterone as well as enhanced muscular force.

Tongkat Ali for Metabolism

Tongkat ali may be active in enhancing metabolism. Slow metabolism may occur where there is a lack of a metabolic agent called T3 (triiodothyronine) which helps the metabolic systems and other related glands and organs in the body to perform their normal functions.

If left untreated, slow metabolism may lead to a number of conditions such as fatigue, weight gain, increase in cholesterol, diabetes, high blood pressure, fibrosis, excessive sweat, and poor circulation. [21]Yusof, S, M., Zakaria, Z., Karim, A. A., Aiman, S., & Kadir, Z. (2016). Enhancement Effects of Tongkat Ali (Eurycoma longifolia) Supplementation on Performance Functions Following Strength Training in Middle-Aged Women. In Proceedings of the 2nd International Colloquium on Sports Science, Exercise, Engineering and Technology, (ICoSSEET 2015) 3-13. Springer, Singapore. doi.org/10.1007/978-981-287-691-1_1

These conditions might not sound as life-threatening ones, but one thing is sure – slowly but surely they all lead to the most common life-threatening conditions including heart attack, and stroke. Several studies conducted on the benefits of tongkat ali for metabolism have found that tongkat ali may be effective in improving gut health and protecting the lining of the stomach. [22]Lepczyńska, M., Białkowska, J., Dzika, E., Piskorz-Ogórek, K., & Korycińska, J. (2017). Blastocystis: how do specific diets and human gut microbiota affect its development and pathogenicity? European Journal of Clinical Microbiology & Infectious Diseases, 36(9),1531-40. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10096-017-2965-0

A study conducted on the efficacy of this herb in preventing carbohydrates intolerance, obesity and insulin resistance found that tongkat ali may be beneficial in enhancing glucose absorption by cells, increasing insulin sensitivity, and lowering the accumulation of lipid in adipose tissue. The study is published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology. [23]Lahrita, L., Kato, E., & Kawabata, J. (2015). Uncovering potential of Indonesian medicinal plants on glucose uptake enhancement and lipid suppression in 3T3-L1 adipocytes. Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 168, 229-36. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jep.2015.03.082

Tongkat Ali for Stress

Nowadays, it is almost impossible to avoid stress, living the way that we do. Getting little rest, eating unhealthy fast-food, working way too many hours at the office and getting little to no regular exercise has a negative effect on our lives. It all results in way too much stress being put on us. As you may know, stress is one of the many factors that continually endangers our lives increasing the risk of heart attack, diabetes, stroke, high blood pressure, anxiety, and so many other common health issues. But we are in luck because once again, tongkat ali is at our side to help us.

Tongkat ali has been found to have potential efficacy in reducing the level of cortisol in the body. Cortisol is the hormone responsible for regulating the level of stress in the body and a high level of it may lead to stress-related conditions. Tongkat ali for stress is especially important because it boosts the level of testosterone which, in turn, leads to enhanced mood, strength, stamina, and overall body health and fitness.

A study published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition found that this herb may be used as a safe and effective stress reliever. The researchers who conducted the study found that taking tongkat ali for four weeks may be beneficial in reducing salivary cortisol levels, increasing testosterone levels, improving mood, as well as reducing confusion, anger, and tension. [24]Sellami M, Slimeni, O., Pokrywka, A., Kuvačić, G., Hayes, L. D., Milic, M., & Padulo, J. (2018). Herbal medicine for sports: a review. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, 15(1),14. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12970-018-0218-y

Another study entitled “The Effect of tongkat ali on Stress Hormones and Psychological Mood State in Moderately Stressed Subjects” found that the herb may be effective in improving the level of stress as well as other mood parameters. The study analyzed mood state and stress hormones in 63 participants who were administered a standardized hot water-soluble extract of tongkat ali root for four weeks. [25]Talbott, S. M., Talbott, J. A., George, A., & Pugh, M. (2013). Effect of tongkat ali on stress hormones and psychological mood state in moderately stressed subjects. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, 10, 28. DOI: 10.1186%2F1550-2783-10-28

The researchers found an improved stress and mood profile, thus suggesting that tongkat ali root extract may be an effective approach to protecting the body from the unpleasant symptoms that accompany stress as well as conditions that may develop if chronic stress is left untreated. Specifically, there was a significant improvement in testosterone level (+37 percent), cortisol level (−16 percent), Anger (−12 percent), Tension (−11 percent), and Confusion (−15 percent).

Tongkat Ali as an Anxiety Remedy

This herb has been used as a remedy for anxiety disorders. In contemporary times, anxiety disorders are prevalent and they are believed to be one of the most common types of psychiatric disorders. However, these conditions are usually diagnosed based on the symptoms reported by the patient and can be caused by the use of drugs such as amphetamines, cocaine, and corticosteroids.

Anxiety may also be worsened by the use of caffeinated drinks, stimulants, excessive dietary supplements such as SAM-e or even by certain medical conditions. Individuals diagnosed with a generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), often experience fear and the worry of imminent harm. Taking tongkat ali as an anxiety treatment is beneficial because the herb can provide its users with better moods, calm feelings, and a sense of control over their affairs.

A recent study conducted on moderately stressed individuals revealed that this herb may be beneficial in reducing the level of cortisol in the body as well as confusion, tension, and anger. [26]Talbott, S. M., Talbott, J. A., George, A., & Pugh, M. (2013), Effect of tongkat ali on stress hormones and psychological mood state in moderately stressed subjects. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, 10(1), 28. DOI: 10.1186%2F1550-2783-10-28 It is important to state that all of these are major contributing factors to anxiety. Another study conducted on the efficacy of this herb in enhancing mood state in mice found that it led to a significant increase in exploratory behavior and a reduction in the frequency of aggressive/fighting episodes. [27]Talbott, S. M. (2019). Human performance and sports applications of Tongkat Ali (Eurycoma longifolia). In Nutrition and Enhanced Sports Performance. 729-734. Academic Press. doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-12-813922-6.00063-1

Tongkat Ali for Diabetes

Diabetes is listed among the most common health issues today. According to the latest statistical data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there are 30.3 million cases of diabetes in the United States and another 84.1 million individuals over the age of 18 have prediabetes. [28]Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2017). National Diabetes Statistics Report, 2017. Atlanta, GA: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, US Department of Health and Human Services. Retrieved from https://www.cdc.gov/diabetes/data/statistics/statistics-report.html With this disease quickly approaching epidemic levels, it is not surprising that people are looking for alternative treatments. Once again, we are witnesses of the numerous beneficial effects that tongkat ali presents!

Tongkat ali may be prescribed to treat type II diabetes. It is believed that the herb plays a key role in helping the body maintain a healthy level of blood sugar. A study conducted on the benefits of tongkat ali for diabetes found that the herb may be effective in regulating blood sugar levels in the body. [29]Ulbricht, C., Conquer, J., Flanagan, K., Isaac, R., Rusie, E., & Windsor, R. C. (2013). An evidence-based systematic review of tongkat ali (Eurycoma longifolia) by the Natural Standard Research Collaboration. Journal of Dietary Supplements, 10(1), 54-83. doi.org/10.3109/19390211.2012.761467

The researchers added that the study participants reported no adverse side effect. However, the herb works better with people who make some lifestyle changes like regular exercise, adequate sleep, frequent exposure to sunlight, and a reduction in the consumption of carbohydrate.

Using Tongkat Ali for Treating Malaria

Tongkat ali was traditionally used in ancient folk medicine as a treatment for malaria. Today, the herb has also been used as an alternative treatment for this condition. So you see, this is not a new herbal remedy and it could aid in the fight against this awful disease in the countries where, unfortunately, malaria continues to take young lives. Several human and animal studies have found that this herb may offer quick relief from malaria. However, the need for additional research on the benefits of using tongkat ali for treating malaria is imperative before trying this as a remedy.

A study conducted on the chemical composition of tongkat ali found that the herb contains 65 medicinal compounds. [30]Mohamed, A. N., Vejayan, J., & Yusoff, M. M. (2015). Review on Eurycoma longifolia pharmacological and phytochemical properties. Journal of Applied Sciences, 15(6):831. Retrieved from http://docsdrive.com/pdfs/ansinet/jas/2015/831-844.pdf Compounds 57 and 58 were found to be effective in treating malaria. The researchers also revealed that the compounds showed effective antimalarial activity against the resistant Plasmodium falciparum which is believed to be the deadliest species of malaria-causing Plasmodium in humans.

Tongkat Ali for Mood Enhancement

Tongkat ali may be beneficial for enhancing mood by giving its users a calm and relaxing feeling. This herb may also be effective in helping to treat and prevent conditions that may dampen the mood such as depression, anxiety, tension, anger, and confusion. In addition, tongkat ali provides its users with a feeling of happiness and overall well being of the body.

A study conducted on the benefits of tongkat ali for mood enhancement and stress hormones in moderately stressed subjects found that this herb may be effective in improving mood state. [31]Talbott, S. M., Talbott, J. A., George, A., & Pugh, M. (2013). Effect of tongkat ali on stress hormones and psychological mood state in moderately stressed subjects. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, 10, 28. DOI: 10.1186%2F1550-2783-10-28 The researchers added that the herb led to a decrease in the level of cortisol, tension, confusion, and anger as well as a significant increase in the level of testosterone.

Tongkat Ali for Sexual Health

The majority of individuals who use tongkat ali do so because of the sexual health benefits the herb has to offer. The root extract contains aphrodisiac properties thus making it a great choice for helping conditions such as low libido, erectile dysfunction, and other sexual health-related conditions. Tongkat ali was traditionally prescribed as a remedy for these types of conditions and today it is widely accepted and used in the modern day.

Although this herb is commonly adopted to help conditions associated with the sexual health of men, it is important to state that tongkat ali root extract is also beneficial as an aid for certain conditions in females such as hyperandrogenism, osteoporosis, breast cancer, hormonal imbalance, and several others. [32]Rehman, S., Choe, K., & Yoo, H. (2016). Review on a traditional herbal medicine, Eurycoma longifolia Jack (Tongkat Ali): its traditional uses, chemistry, evidence-based pharmacology and toxicology. Molecules, 21(3), 331. doi.org/10.3390/molecules21030331 Here are a few benefits of tongkat ali for sexual health.

Tongkat Ali for Erectile Dysfunction

A common sought after benefit of tongkat ali is its potential efficacy and possible remedy in treating erectile dysfunction in men. This condition is characterized by the inability to get as well as maintain an erection. Erectile dysfunction brings on numerous difficulties in one’s life – depression, anxiety, sleep problems, intimacy problems, and relationship problems. The potential issues are numerous. It is also one of the most common sexual disorders among men nowadays. Luckily, tongkat ali is a natural aphrodisiac and that is for a very good reason.

The treatment and effective management of erectile dysfunction are important to the sexual, reproductive, and the overall health of the male body. This is because the sexual performance, sexual satisfaction, and fertility of a male depend on attaining and maintaining erections within a reasonable period of time. A quality intimate relationship and family balance are also heavily dependent on being healthy in this aspect of life.

Tongkat ali root extract is believed to be effective in treating erectile dysfunction as well as improving erections for men who are not suffering from the condition. The herb performs this function by increasing the levels of testosterone which in turn leads to improved sexual health, increased energy, endurance, and stronger erections.

The researchers of a study published in Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine found that tongkat ali led to an enhanced overall sexual performance in the study participants who took tongkat ali for about twelve weeks. [33]Udani, J. K., George, A. A., Musthapa, M., Pakdaman, M. N., & Abas, A. (2014). Effects of a Proprietary Freeze-Dried Water Extract of Eurycoma longifolia (Physta) and Polygonum minus on Sexual Performance and Well-Being in Men: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study. Evidence-Based Complementary Alternative Medicine, 2014-179529. doi:10.1155/2014/179529 Another study published in Translational Andrology and Urology found that tongkat ali root extract resulted in increased libido, improved erectile function, increased sperm quality and quantity as well as loss of fat mass in overweight participants. [34]Lim, P. H. C. (2017). Asian herbals and aphrodisiacs used for managing ED. Translational Andrology and Urology, 6(2), 167-175. doi:10.21037/tau.2017.04.04

Tongkat Ali and Libido

Low libido can most commonly be caused by low testosterone levels, depression, anxiety and stress. Tongkat ali has been prescribed as an herbal remedy for a low sexual drive. Due to its aphrodisiac properties, the herb is believed to be beneficial in increasing libido. There are several animal studies that have investigated the efficacy of this herb for improving sexual drive in individuals suffering from low libido. Most of these studies found that there was an enhanced sexual drive in the animals. There are also numerous user reviews that speak of their excellent experiences with tongkat ali in their fight against low libido.

A study conducted on the efficacy of tongkat ali, for treating low libido in middle-aged retired male breeder mice, found that the mice who were administered tongkat ali root extract recorded a significant increase in mounting frequency with female mice. [35]Ang, H. H., Lee, K. L., & Kiyoshi, M. (2013). Eurycoma longifolia Jack enhances sexual motivation in middle-aged male mice. Journal of Basic and Clinical Physiology and Pharmacology, 14(3),301-8. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14964739 The researchers also found that this category of mice showed an improvement in genital licking and sniffing due to higher sex drives. Although other male mice who were not given the herb went about their normal daily activities while those that took tongkat ali, showed more interest in their female counterparts.

There are several other animal studies that have been conducted on the relationship between tongkat ali and libido but it is not clear if the findings of the studies can be extended to humans. Only a few human studies have been conducted on the benefits of tongkat ali for libido. [36]Thu, H. E., Mohamed, I. N., Hussain, Z., Putri, A. J., & Shuid, A. N. (2017). Eurycoma Longifolia as a potential adaptogen of male sexual health: A systematic review on clinical studies. Chinese Journal of Natural Medicine, 15(1):71-80. doi: 10.1016/S1875-5364(17)30010-9

Men who have used this herb have reported that it was effective in boosting sexual drive as they noticed stronger and longer erections, increased stamina, and fullness in the testicles. This is believed to be as a result of an increase in the levels of testosterone in the body.

Tongkat Ali for Fertility

Tongkat ali is prescribed as a treatment for infertility. Several studies conducted on the efficacy of this herb for infertility found that the herb may be promising in reversing and preventing this condition. A study conducted in 2010 found that taking 200 mg of tongkat ali for fertility for three to nine-month resulted in increased sperm volume, enhanced semen concentrations, as well as a regulated semen morphology, and semen motility.

In addition, the researchers found that the therapy resulted in spontaneous pregnancy in about 11 of the study participants partners. [37]Tambi, M. I. & Imran, M. K. (2010). Eurycoma longifolia Jack in managing idiopathic male infertility. Asian Journal of Andrology, 12(3), 376-80. doi: 10.1038/aja.2010.7 Another study conducted on tongkat ali and Infertility found that the herb leads to about 15 percent pregnancy in the study participant’s partners. Most people who purchase the herb do not do it for fertility reason, but this is a plus for people who are struggling with infertility.

The effectiveness of tongkat ali in treating infertility is not surprising considering the plant’s potency in reversing conditions relating to the reproductive organ. It is no news that better sex drive, increased sperm count and sperm quality, better erections, and enhanced performance will significantly increase the chance of conception. [38]Sengupta, P., Agarwal, A., Pogrebetskaya, M., Roychoudhury, S., Durairajanayagam, D., & Henkel, R. (2017). Role of Withania somnifera (Ashwagandha) in the management of male infertility. Reproductive Biomedicine online, 36(3), 311-326. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.rbmo.2017.11.007 However, it is advised to take precautions if you are taking tongkat ali and you are not ready for children.

Benefits of Tongkat Ali for Men

When tongkat ali is mentioned, the first thing that crosses the minds of individuals who are familiar with the herb is that it is a remedy used to boost sex drive and regulate vital hormones in males such as testosterone, as well as its role as the “Natural Viagra”.This is because, for the longest time, this herb was used primarily for regulating hormones and increasing libido in men. In recent times, the herb is mostly used by men because of its effectiveness in improving their overall health and therefore their life. [39]Thu, H. E., Mohamed, I. N., Hussain, Z., Jayusman, P. A., & Shuid, A. N. (2017). Eurycoma Longifolia as a potential adaptogen of male sexual health: a systematic review on clinical studies. Chinese Journal of Natural Medicines, 15(1), 71-80. doi.org/10.1016/S1875-5364(17)30010-9 Here are few benefits of tongkat ali for men:

Tongkat Ali for Testosterone

As mentioned above, as men age, their testosterone levels begin to decline. Several other hormones in the body may also decline and even come to a stage where the man may lose the majority of the vitality he had during his youthful years. This condition is referred to as andropause and is characterized by symptoms such as mental lethargy, increased body fat, low libido, fatigue, and many others.

This phase may be a very frustrating one for men and many may feel confused as to a way out. Tongkat ali contains properties that make the herb a great natural choice for conditions relating to the sexual health of men as well as their overall well-being. [40]Gunnels, T. A. & Bloomer, R. J. (2014). Increasing Circulating Testosterone: Impact of Herbal Dietary Supplements. Journal of Plant Biochemistry & Physiology, 2,2. doi.org/10.4172/2329-9029.1000130

A study conducted in 2014 on the effectiveness of tongkat ali root extract on testosterone levels in men found that it may be a safe alternative to testosterone replacement therapy (TRT). [41]George, A. & Henkel, R. (2014). Phytoandrogenic properties of Eurycoma longifolia as natural alternative to testosterone replacement therapy. Andrologia, 46(7), 708-21. doi.org/10.1111/and.12214 TRT is a process utilized to treat a condition known as TDS (testosterone deficiency syndrome).

The condition is characterized by several unpleasant symptoms including increased body fat mass, low libido, fatigue, male osteoporosis, and erectile dysfunction, just to name a few.

Taking tongkat ali for testosterone to prevent or treat the condition is especially important as it is reported that nearly 70 percent of men will experience at least one aging males’ symptom in their lifetime. [42]Corrêa, L. Q., Silva, M. C., & Rombaldi, A. J. (2013). Sexual dysfunction symptoms in men age 40 or older: Prevalence and associated factors. Revista Brasileira de Epidemiologia, 16(2), 444-53. doi.org/10.1590/S1415-790X2013000200019

TDS is a condition that naturally results from the age‐dependent decline in the level and concentration of serum testosterone in the body. The concentration of the hormone may decrease by up to 50 percent in men who are older than 60 years compared to those who are younger. However, this rapid decline in the levels of serum testosterone may also be caused by certain medical conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure, metabolic syndrome, or obesity.

Researchers have found that tongkat ali may serve as a safe alternative to TRT as it restored the level of serum testosterone to a normal range, improved bone, and sexual health, as well as the overall physical condition of participants diagnosed with TDS. The researchers added that the herb had no significant side effect on the study subjects. [43]Thu, H.E., Mohamed, I.N., Hussain, Z., & Shuid, A.N. (2017). Eurycoma longifolia as a potential alternative to testosterone for the treatment of osteoporosis: Exploring time-mannered proliferative, differentiative and morphogenic modulation in osteoblasts. Journal of Ethnopharmacology,195(4), 143-58. doi.org/10.1016/j.jep.2016.10.085

Tongkat Ali for Male Libido

As already mentioned above, this herb is primarily used to treat low libido in men. Many men are struggling with decreased sex drive and poor sexual performance and satisfaction. This can be frustrating and may have a negative effect on other areas of their life. Tongkat ali has been found to be a safe and potent natural remedy for a low libido in men.

A study conducted on the effectiveness of the herb in treating low sex drive found that it is beneficial in increasing the level of free testosterone in the body, which invariably means increased libido, sexual performance, and sexual satisfaction. [44]Henkel, R. R., Wang, R., Bassett, S. H., Chen, T., Liu, N., Zhu, Y., & Tambi, M. I. (2014). Tongkat Ali as a potential herbal supplement for physically active male and female seniors—a pilot study. Phytotherapy Research, 28(4), 544-550. doi.org/10.1002/ptr.5017

Even though many users of tongkat ali root extract reported a significant increase in sex drive after taking the herb for two weeks, it is recommended to take it for 1-3 month for a long-lasting effect.

Tongkat Ali for Sperm Quantity and Quality

The tongkat ali health benefits for men may also include increasing sperm quantity and quality. In recent times, several technological factors including GMO’s, cell phones, medications, manufactured food, and many others may lead to a significant decrease in sperm count. Cases of infertility in men is becoming more prevalent by the day. [45]Agarwal, A., Mulgund, A., Hamada, A., & Chyatte, M.R. (2015). A unique view on male infertility around the globe. Reproductive Biology and Endocrinology, 13(1):37. doi.org/10.1186/s12958-015-0032-1

Tongkat ali for low sperm count may be helpful in preventing and treating infertility in men according to the findings of numerous animal and human studies conducted on the topic. A study conducted on 75 male partners of couples diagnosed with idiopathic infertility found that the herb led to a significant increase in sperm concentrations, semen volumes, and an improved rate of sperm motility and sperm morphology. [46]Tambi, M. I., & Imran, M. K. (2010). Eurycoma longifolia Jack in managing idiopathic male infertility. Asian Journal of Andrology, 12(3), 376-80. doi:10.1038/aja.2010.7

In addition to the improvement in semen parameters, these researchers also found that the increase in sperm quality caused by the herb led to a 14.7 percent pregnancy in the partners of the study participants. They added that no adverse side effects were shown by the participants and concluded that tongkat ali is both safe and effective for treating low sperm count and infertility in men.

Tongkat Ali For Better Sexual Performance And Powerful Ejaculations

Since tongkat ali has been shown to be effective in boosting the level of testosterone and increasing libido, it invariably means that the herb may be beneficial in enhancing sexual performance and sexual satisfaction. For instance, where there are strong sex drive and strong erection, there will be definitely a better sexual performance.

Many tongkat ali users have reported a better sexual performance as well as a reduction in the refractory period. Others noted that the herb was so effective in enhancing their sexual performance that they even achieved multiple orgasms in a session, as well as multiple sexual activities in a day. [47]Lim, P.H.C. (2017). Asian herbals and aphrodisiacs used for managing ED. Translational Andrology and Urology, 6(2), 167-175. doi:10.21037/tau.2017.04.04

Furthermore, tongkat ali allows its users to enjoy stronger erections and powerful ejaculation. Studies conducted on the effectiveness of the herb in improving erections found that it is effective in treating erectile dysfunction in men diagnosed with the condition. Tongkat ali is also useful in enhancing strong erection and powerful ejaculation in healthy men. [48]Kotirum, S., Ismail, S.B., & Chaiyakunapruk, N. (2015). Efficacy of Tongkat Ali (Eurycoma longifolia) on erectile function improvement: Systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Complementary Therapies in Medicine, 23(5), 693-698. doi.org/10.1016/j.ctim.2015.07.009

Tongkat Ali for Increased Muscle Mass and Loss of Fat Mass

The herb may be also active in increasing the size of the muscle. This is the reason why it is famous among individuals who live an active lifestyle, bodybuilders, weightlifters, and fitness professions. Tongkat ali is not only beneficial in Increasing muscle mass, but it is also effective in stimulating the loss of fat mass in overweight individuals. [49]Talbott, S. M. (2019). Human performance and sports applications of Tongkat Ali (Eurycoma longifolia). In Nutrition and Enhanced Sports Performance, 729-734. Academic Press. doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-12-813922-6.00063-1

The reduction in fat mass is triggered by the reduction in the level of cortisol and the increase in testosterone levels. Less fat mass equals better health, athletic performance, and a reduction in the risk of developing conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity, heart disease, and many others.

Tongkat ali has been shown to be effective in stimulating an increase in muscle mass and a reduction in fat mass. A study published in The British Journal of Sports Medicine on the efficacy of tongkat ali for muscle building found that the herb led to a 5 percent increase in lean body mass of study participants who took tongkat ali for 5 weeks. [50]Hamzah, S. & Yusof, A. (2003). 007 The Ergogenic Effects of Eurycoma Longifolia Jack: A Pilot Study. British Journal of Sports Medicine, 37(5),464-470. doi: 10.1136/bjsm.37.5.464 If you are tired of working out in the gym with no results, tongkat ali supplements may be the answer you need help to improve your fitness objectives.

It is important to state that an increase in body mass and the levels of testosterone will invariably lead to a significant improvement in athletic performance. In addition, increased level of testosterone leads to an improvement in strength, stamina, endurance, and shorter recovery time after a stress workout thus making tongkat ali the ideal supplement for athletes.

Benefits of Tongkat Ali for Women

It is true that tongkat ali root extract is a herb that offers ample health benefits for men, but it is also true that the herb may be beneficial in treating similar conditions in women. There are only a few studies on the benefits of tongkat ali for women, but it is important to state that more studies are underway. Hormonal imbalance is one of the major condition women are battling with.

Several other unpleasant symptoms and medical conditions may spring from hormonal imbalance. It may be accompanied by symptoms such as foggy thought, fatigue, metabolism, and low libido. Tongkat ali was usually prescribed to balance hormones and treat related conditions in females. Here are a few other amazing benefits of tongkat ali for women:

Tongkat Ali for Hyperandrogenism

Tongkat ali may be effective in treating hyperandrogenism. This is a medical condition caused by high level of androgen in the female body. Hyperandrogenism is characterized by the increase in male sex hormone in the body of a female, which may lead to (PCOS) polycystic ovary syndrome seborrhea, acne, hair loss, increased libido, hirsutism, and several others.

Tongkat ali is prescribed to treat hormonal imbalance in female thus alleviating the symptom associated with the condition. Interestingly, the herb may also be beneficial in treating other hormone-related conditions such as hyperestrogenism, which is a condition characterized by excess levels of estrogen in the body. A recent study with female rats investigated the use of an extract of Eurycoma longifolia to regulate levels of reproductive hormones. Studies like this one help to support the use of tongkat ali in humans. [51]Rahman, S. A., Ahmad, N. A., Samat, N. H. A., Zahri, S., Abdullah, A. R., & Chan, K. L. (2017). The potential of standardized quassinoid-rich extract of Eurycoma longifolia in the regulation of the oestrous cycle of rats. Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Biomedicine, 7(1), 27-31. doi.org/10.1016/j.apjtb.2016.07.016

Tongkat Ali as an Energy Booster

The benefits of tongkat ali also include boosting energy and reducing stress and anxiety. The herb has been proven to be active in reducing the level of stress hormone – cortisol and increase the level of testosterone. This does not mean that the level of testosterone will be increased like that of a male body, it simply means the herb helps to maintain a healthy level of testosterone in females. [52]Henkel, R. R., Wang, R., Bassett, S. H., Chen, T., Liu, N., Zhu, Y., & Tambi, M. I. (2014). Tongkat Ali as a potential herbal supplement for physically active male and female seniors—a pilot study. Phytotherapy Research, 28(4), 544-550. doi.org/10.1002/ptr.5017

Tongkat Ali for Fat Mass Loss

Tongkat ali may be beneficial in reducing fat mass in the body. Belly fat and weight gain is bad news for the health as they may lead to several other conditions like heart disease, diabetes, and obesity. Meanwhile, the reduction in body fat mass may lead to an improvement in the overall health of the body.

However, it is important to state that there are several causes of unwanted weight gain such as aging, hormonal imbalance, exposure to the toxin, and medical conditions. Tongkat ali is believed to be an active agent in aiding loss of fat mass in the body. The herb does this by normalizing imbalance hormones. Animal studies with rats have shown that this herb is effective in reducing body fat. [53]Faisal, G. G., Haque, M., Najmuldeen, G. F., Al-Ahmad, B. E., Radeef, A. S., & Alattraqchi, A. G. (2017). Changes in leptin in relation to increased testosterone levels associated with Eurycoma longifolia jack (tongkat ali) root extract consumption in male rats. Journal of Young Pharmacists, 9(1), 40-42. Retrieved from https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Mainul_Haque2/publication/312091231_Changes_in_Leptin_in_Relation_to_Increased_Testosterone_Levels_Associated_with_Eurycoma_Longifolia_Jack_Tongkat_Ali_Root_Extract_Consumption_in_Male_Rats/links/586f04f608aebf17d3a881aa/Changes-in-Leptin-in-Relation-to-Increased-Testosterone-Levels-Associated-with-Eurycoma-Longifolia-Jack-Tongkat-Ali-Root-Extract-Consumption-in-Male-Rats.pdf

Tongkat Ali for Female Libido

But it is not just men that get to experience the beneficial effects of tongkat ali when it comes to its abilities to increase libido. Women, as well, can suffer from low libido, especially during menopause. Just like in males, a healthy level of testosterone may lead to increased sex drive in females. In the perimenopausal phase, women may suffer a lot of unpleasant symptoms such as hormonal imbalance, low sex drive, mood swings, hot flashes, and much more. It is believed that these symptoms are caused by a major change in the balance of hormones which is common in this phase of life. [54]Yim, G., Ahn, Y., Chang, Y., Ryu, S., Lim, J. Y., Kang, D., … & Park, H. Y. (2015). Prevalence and severity of menopause symptoms and associated factors across menopause status in Korean women. Menopause, 22(10), 1108-1116. doi:10.1097/GME.0000000000000438

However, hormonal imbalance may happen to a female of any age and at any time, thus leading to low libido and other related conditions. Taking tongkat ali for female libido can be beneficial in balancing important sex hormones like testosterone and estrogen thus increasing sex drive. The herb’s aphrodisiac properties may also be beneficial for increasing the sensitivity of female erogenous zones hence leading to increased libido. [55]Enema, O. J., Umoh, U. F., Umoh, R. A., Ekpo, E. G., Adesina, S. K., & Eseyin, O. A. (2018). Chemistry and Pharmacology of Aphrodisiac Plants: A Review. Journal of Chemical and Pharmaceutical Research, 10(7), 70-98. Retrieved from https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Olorunfemi_Eseyin/publication/327582326_Chemistry_and_Pharmacology_of_Aphrodisiac_Plants_A_Review/links/5b98205392851c4ba80ff110/Chemistry-and-Pharmacology-of-Aphrodisiac-Plants-A-Review.pdf

Tongkat Ali for Bone Health

This herb also helps to improve bone health in females. Tongkat ali has been found to be a safe and effective treatment option for osteoporosis. The condition is common during the menopause and in older women. It is characterized by fragile, brittle and weak bones. Tongkat ali has been found to be beneficial in increasing the level of testosterone in the body which invariably leads to a significant improvement in the health of bones. A recent study using rats examined the use of Eurycoma longifolia extract as an alternative option for the prevention of degenerative bone changes in osteoporosis due to androgen deficiency. The authors felt that their study was successful and further investigation is warranted to clarify the exact mechanism by which the extract exerted its anti-osteoporotic effects. [56]Jayusman, P., Mohamed, I., Alias, E., Mohamed, N., & Shuid, A. (2018). The Effects of Quassinoid-Rich Eurycoma longifolia Extract on Bone Turnover and Histomorphometry Indices in the Androgen-Deficient Osteoporosis Rat Model. Nutrients, 10(7), 799; doi:10.3390/nu10070799

Tongkat Ali for Breast Cancer

Tongkat ali is believed to contain active anti-cancer properties. Studies conducted on the benefits of tongkat ali in females found that the herb may be beneficial in treating and preventing breast cancer in women. tongkat ali performs this function by inhibiting the spread of cancer cells to other organs in the body of individuals diagnosed with the condition. [57]Thu, H. E., Hussain, Z., Mohamed, I. N., & Shuid, A. N. (2018). Eurycoma longifolia, a potential phytomedicine for the treatment of cancer: Evidence of p53-mediated apoptosis in cancerous cells. Current Drug Targets, 19(10), 1109-1126. DOI: 10.2174/1389450118666170718151913

Although there is a need for further studies into the effectiveness of the herb in treating cancer, studies published on the topic found that tongkat ali root extract may be a safe and effective alternative to chemotherapy. A study conducted in this area found that the herb prevented the metastasis of cancer cells and stimulated their early death in people diagnosed with cancer. It is also reported that unlike chemotherapy, tongkat ali supplement has no adverse side effect when used to treat cancer. [58]Yumi Z. H-Y. Hashim, Chris I. R. Gill, Cheryl Latimer, Nigel Ternan and Phirdaous Abbas (2016). Studies of Malaysian Plants in Prevention and Treatment of Colorectal Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Luis Rodrigo, IntechOpen, DOI:10.5772/62868

Tongkat Ali for Mood-Upliftment and Stress Relief

Tongkat ali may be helpful in improving mood and relieving stress in females. The herb is believed to be beneficial in reducing the level of the major stress hormone – cortisol in the body. Clinical trials conducted on the effectiveness of tongkat ali root in improving mood and reducing stress found that it led to a significant reduction in the level of cortisol, anger, confusion, and tension in moderately stressed individuals.

The herb is also beneficial in creating a calm feeling thus making its users less tensed and fully in control of their activities. A clinical trial conducted in 2013 on the effectiveness of the herb in improving mood found that the herb contains mood uplifting properties and led to a significant decrease in the level of testosterone. The study which was conducted on 32 males and 31 females found that the herb had no adverse side effect on the study subjects. [59]Talbott, S. M., Talbott, J. A., George, A., & Pugh, M. (2013). Effect of Tongkat Ali on stress hormones and psychological mood state in moderately stressed subjects. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, 10(1), 28. https://doi.org/10.1186/1550-2783-10-28

Other Tongkat Ali Benefits for Women

There are several other amazing benefits of tongkat ali for women. For instance, the herb is used to help women tighten their abdomen, alleviate postnatal symptoms, and enhance quick delivery after birth. Tongkat ali may also be beneficial in providing a quick relief from stomach ulcers, allergies, and fever. In addition, the herb has been found to offer antibacterial and antioxidant benefit. [60]Faisal, G. G., Zakaria, S. M., & Najmuldeen, G. F. (2015). In Vitro Antibacterial Activity of Eurycoma Longifolia Jack (Tongkat Ali) Root Extract. International Medical Journal Malaysia,14(1). Retrieved from https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/5a77/4b7b55d4fb92f36bf056b6de010938b0eb8a.pdf

Furthermore, the herb prevents hair loss which is common as women age thus leading to a healthy and radiant hair. It is also prescribed as an alternative treatment remedy for an irregular menstrual cycle, cough, diarrhea, syphilis, hypertension, and many other conditions. [61]Ismail, S. & Narayanaswamy, R. (2015). Cosmetic potential of Southeast Asian herbs: an overview. Phytochemistry Reviews,14(3), 419-428. DOI 10.1007/s11101-015-9396-2

Tongkat Ali Side Effects

Compared to pharmaceutical medications, herbal supplements usually have little to no side effects. Tongkat ali is reportedly safe to use when taken in small quantity within a short period of time. However, the herb may have a mild to moderate side effect when taken in large quantity for a long period of time.

Mild Side Effects of Tongkat Ali

Meanwhile, some tongkat ali users have reported mild side effects including sleep disorders, fatigue, anxiety, weakness, restlessness, elevated body temperature, low libido, tension, and rapid heartbeat, among many others. Furthermore, only a few human studies conducted on the effect of the herb have been published and so tongkat ali side effects when taken in large doses over a long period of time is still not clear. [62]Rehman, S., Choe, K., & Yoo, H. (2016). Review on a traditional herbal medicine, Eurycoma longifolia Jack (Tongkat Ali): its traditional uses, chemistry, evidence-based pharmacology and toxicology. Molecules, 21(3), 331. doi.org/10.3390/molecules21030331

Interactions and Contraindications with Tongkat Ali

The herb may also interact with certain medications such as immunosuppressant, antiplatelet, anticoagulant, blood pressure medication, as well as medications that regulate insulin or blood sugar levels. [63]Lee, J. K., Tan, R. B., & Chung, E. (2017). Erectile dysfunction treatment and traditional medicine—can East and West medicine coexist? Translational Andrology and Urology, 6(1), 91. doi:10.21037/tau.2016.11.13

Due to the effectiveness of the herb in boosting testosterone levels in the body, people who are diagnosed with conditions that may be negatively affected by higher levels of testosterone may suffer some unpleasant side effects of tongkat ali. It is advised for people suffering from heart disease, liver disease, hormone-sensitive cancers, kidney disease, and diabetes to avoid taking tongkat ali without first consulting with their respective medical practitioners.

It is also not clear whether this herb is safe during pregnancy and lactation but it is best for women to suspend the herb until after pregnancy and breastfeeding. Children and people suffering from weakened immune systems are advised to avoid taking tongkat ali. [64]Yusof, J., Mahdy, Z. A., & Noor, R. M. (2016). Use of complementary and alternative medicine in pregnancy and its impact on obstetric outcome. Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice, 25, 155-163. doi.org/10.1016/j.ctcp.2016.09.005

It is important to state that some food and lifestyle choices may interact with tongkat ali. For instance, it is reported that caffeine may cause negative side effects for people taking tongkat ali. Since every individual is different, the herb may react differently from one person to another.

Generally, it is advised to start by taking the herb in small doses and then gradually increasing it over time to prevent any adverse side effects of the tongkat ali extract.

How to Take Tongkat Ali

Deciding how to take tongkat ali usually differs from culture to culture. The root is the part of the plant commonly consumed for medicinal purposes even if other parts are also believed to contain medicinal properties. An extract from the root is believed to be beneficial in treating many conditions and can be consumed in different forms including tea, coffee, tincture, powder, and even capsule.

Today, tongkat ali supplements are added to food, beverages and energy drinks. Although taking the herb in this form is not a bad idea, it is believed that it is not as potent as supplements that are encapsulated. You may also find it difficult to calculate your dosage of tongkat ali when taken in these forms compared to when you consume the capsule. Here are a few common ways to take tongkat ali root extract:

Tongkat Ali Extract

As already mentioned above the root is the part of the plant commonly used for medicinal purposes. Centuries ago, the root is grounded, boiled, and sieved by herbal physicians. The water from the boiled root is then offered to patients to treat the condition they desire to remedy. However, with the recent advancement of technology things are different but you can still boil the root and ingest the water if you so choose.

It is important to know that this is not recommendable as the root may be contaminated by heavy metals and other pollutants in the soil where the herb has grown. Today, a good tongkat ali extract from the root is obtained through a controlled process with world-class facilities that ensure that the natural component and potency of the herb is not altered.

These companies also take active steps to ensure that the herb does not contain heavy metals or other contaminants. Furthermore, the best products available on the market today are standardized so they have consistent potency and efficacy. For this reasons, it is believed that tongkat ali root extract that is carefully manufactured through the appropriate extraction processes is safer and more effective, compared to products directly harvested from the field.

Tongkat Ali Supplements

Tongkat ali is widely used across the globe as a dietary supplement. This is because of the amazing health benefits this herb has to offer. It has been found to offer an array of benefits to both the young and the old, men and women. The herb is prescribed to correct hormonal imbalance, increase strength, reduce stress, and assist with a long list of medical conditions. What is the best Tongkat ali supplement? A standardized tongkat ali root extract with the highest concentration is the most potent and may be best depending on your condition.

There are a few different ways that tongkat ali supplements are taken:

  • Powder
  • Tea
  • Tincture
  • Capsules

Let’s learn a little more about each.

Tongkat Ali Powder

The herb is mostly manufactured in a powdered form. How to use tongkat ali powder differs from person to person. Many companies supply it to consumers in this form who in turn choose to either add it to milk, drinks or solid food depending on individual taste.

Additionally, tongkat ali root extract is famous for its bitter nature and it takes a lot of courage to consume it in a powdered form. Other food and beverages company have adopted this form of the herb, which is then used as an additive in the product they manufacture.

Tongkat Ali Tea

Another form in which tongkat ali root extract can be consumed is as tea. The companies who produce the extract in the form of tea usually manufacture or purchase it in a powdered form that is then packaged into tea bags. The tea can be consumed hot or cold for its soothing and healing benefits.

Tongkat ali tea may be a great idea for individuals who do not like to take capsules or who are not comfortable with the bitter nature of the powder. Refined sugar, honey or other artificial sweeteners may be added depending on your taste.

Tongkat Ali Tincture

Tongkat ali is also available in a tinctured form. This form is also preferred by some individuals who do not like swallowing pills. A few drops of tongkat ali tincture on the tongue, under the tongue, in drinks, or any other way based on the preference of the user will suffice. The tincture is manufactured in two different ways namely: alcohol base and non-alcohol base.

Both products are believed to be as equally effective but the latter may be preferable to individuals who do not take alcohol. This is based on lifestyle choices or religious grounds. This is because the non-alcohol based tincture is manufactured using plant-based vinegar.

Tongkat Ali Coffee

Another form of consuming tongkat ali is with coffee. The herb is specially mixed with coffee during the manufacturing process to offer dual benefits to individuals who consume it. Tongkat ali coffee may also be purchased for a cheaper cost.

However, it is important to state that benefits of tongkat ali coffee may not manifest, as the herb may not be as effective in this form, compared to the powder or capsule form. It may not offer the benefits you were looking to achieve by consuming the coffee. Coffee with tongkat ali is prepared the same way as the traditional coffee.

Tongkat Ali Capsules

Capsules are the most common and most popular way to consume tongkat ali. The powdered herb is encapsulated and provides an easier way to know the precise dosage you are consuming. This is believed to be the safest and the most potent way of consuming tongkat ali. The capsule form also rules out the need to consume the bitter powdered extract directly. Tongkat ali capsules are easier to consumed and proper storage is usually provided by the seller.

Tongkat Ali Dosage

For a maximum result, it is advised to follow a tongkat ali dosage guide. It is reported that a 600 mg dose of a standardized 200:1 tongkat ali root extract twice daily has been shown to be both safe and effective. This dose can assist with conditions like low libido, erectile dysfunction, late-onset hypogonadism, stress, anxiety, osteoporosis, and many others.

This dose is generally recommended notwithstanding the condition you intend to manage with tongkat ali supplement. A dose below 600 mg twice daily may not be as effective and taking more than the recommended dosage of tongkat ali may lead to some unpleasant side effects, like diarrhea, vomiting, insomnia, and several others. For better results, it is advised to take tongkat ali supplement on a regular basis.

Tongkat Ali Dosage Cycling

For the best result and to prevent your body from becoming dependent on the herb, it is advised to cycle your dosage of tongkat ali root extract. It is recommended to cycle the way you ingest the herb and take a 35-40 percent break. For instance, you may choose to take the herb for 5 days in a row weekly and then take two days off. You may also choose to take the herb for 6 weeks and then take a two-week break before resuming your dosage.

However, 5 days on and 2 days off is believed to be the best way of cycling this herb. Many tongkat ali users reported that they fear cycling may mean starting all over again but this is not completely true. Tongkat ali dosage cycling helps the body to build up the levels of testosterone naturally without becoming dependent on the herb, plus you will not have to start over again every week.

How to Buy Tongkat Ali?

high-quality tongkat ali

Tongkat ali is an herb that offers numerous medicinal benefits to its users. However, there are a few important factors you should consider before purchasing the extract. Whether the herb will work for you will be dependent on whether it is a high-quality product that contains the right proportions of all the active components of tongkat ali.

As already mentioned above, the most potent and widely used part of the plant is the root. So it is recommended to purchase root only extract for the best results. In addition, the easiest and most effective form of taking tongkat ali root extract is in the form of capsules. Ensure you purchase the capsules from a reputable brand and that it contains only pure tongkat ali root extract with no additives.

This is because there are fake products scattered on the market and it may be difficult to tell a fake from the genuine product. Furthermore, it is important to state that tongkat ali capsules on the market, are sold in different concentrations and if you’re going to make this effort, then you should use the best. [65]Abubakar, B. M., Salleh, F. M., & Wagiran, A. (2017). Chemical Composition of Eurycoma longifolia (Tongkat Ali) and the Quality Control of its Herbal Medicinal Products. Journal of Applied Sciences, 17(7), 324-338. https://scialert.net/fulltextmobile/?doi=jas.2017.324.338

Standardization is another important factor to research before purchasing tongkat ali root extract. Many tongkat ali manufacturers reportedly use chemical markers like glycosaponins (up to 45 percent) and eurycomanone (over 1 percent). Additionally, look for a concentration that is stronger to ensure the best result within a shorter period of time.

Tongkat Ali Extract 100:1 or Tongkat Ali Extract 200:1

Tongkat ali root extract is usually sold in different concentration ratios including 20:1, 50:1, 100:1 and 200:1, but 100:1 and 200:1 are the most commonly used. If the manufacturer states that the extract has a concentration of 20:1, it means that 20 gram of tongkat ali root is used to produced 1 gram of the extract.

Since the herb is extracted with water, you will find that a more concentrated tongkat ali is darker, compared to a less concentrated one. While some individuals report that tongkat ali 100:1 is effective in treating the conditions they want to manage, others report faster and long lasting result with tongkat ali 200:1.

Tongkat ali 200:1 (200 grams of root used to produced 1 gram of extract) is believed to be the best and the most potent concentration of tongkat ali root extract. It is advised to avoid extracts that only display “tongkat ali extract” without specifying the concentration. The best dose of tongkat ali 200:1 is 600 mg twice daily.

The Best Tongkat Ali is Standardized Root Extract 200:1

Studies conducted on the chemical compounds contained in tongkat ali root found that eurycomanone is the chief component among them. This phytochemical is believed to be the key component behind many of the health benefits offered by the herb. [66]Han, Y. M., Jang, M., Kim, I. S., Kim, S. H., & Yoo, H. H. (2015). Simultaneous quantitation of six major quassinoids in Tongkat Ali dietary supplements by liquid chromatography with tandem mass spectrometry. Journal of Separation Science, 38(13), 2260-2266. doi:10.1002/jssc.201500207

A tongkat ali root extract is said to be standardized if eurycomanone is quantified and identified by a laboratory process called HPLC. Standardized tongkat ali root extract is expected to contain over 1 percent of eurycomanone in order to be potent in treating different conditions.

Few people who take tongkat ali have complained that the herb wasn’t effective in managing their individual conditions. This may primarily be because they are not taking the right dosage and concentration of the herb.

The herb may be taken in many different forms but it is important that not all of them are potent enough to manage your specific condition.

For instance, tongkat ali coffee may not contain a high enough concentration of the herb to treat your condition(s) because it has been mixed with other ingredients.

The best tongkat ali is the standardized tongkat ali root extract 200:1.

This is because it is the most potent and effective in treating conditions relating to sexual and general health. Tongkat ali consumers that have used this concentration, report fast and longer-lasting effects with continued use.

Malaysian Tongkat Ali Extract Vs Indonesian Tongkat Ali Extract

Checking the concentration of the extract you are buying is a good step towards the right direction, but there are other important factors to consider before purchasing a tongkat ali supplement. Most tongkat ali supplements on the market are manufactured either in Malaysia or Indonesia.

It is advised to go for Indonesia tongkat ali extract if possible. This is because Malaysia tongkat ali extract that is cultivated and processed in a country that reportedly has high lead content in the soil, that is believed to range from 10.64 – 20.72 parts per million. This is unlike the tongkat ali root extract, grown, and manufactured in Indonesia which is believed to have an estimated lead content of about 0.08 parts per million.

This is a huge figure and for your health and safety, it is best to go for Indonesian tongkat ali root extract. In addition, the herb has been declared as a protected plant in Malaysia since 2001 and thus it is illegal to harvest large quantities of tongkat ali from forests in this country. Furthermore, it is important to state that there is no report of any tongkat ali plantations in Malaysia.

For this reason, it is advised to avoid products from manufacturers who claim that their tongkat ali extract is from Malaysia as they may be hiding the real source of the product for a good reason. This does not mean there are no products from Malaysia, it simply means manufacturers may resort to other fishy means of producing the extract since the supply of the plant is limited in Malaysia. Indonesia is reportedly the only country in the world where the plant can be found and harvest in the wild without any limitations.

Where to Buy Tongkat Ali Extract?

This brings us to the question, where can I buy tongkat ali extract? There are so many factors to think about when deciding where to buy tongkat ali extract supplement. Prospective buyers may be confused with regards to how they can get the best and purest tongkat ali root extract. Many pharmaceutical stores such as Watson’s and GNC offer products for sale, but it is important to state that the products offered by these dealers may not be as concentrated as you may want.

In addition, the products may not be offered at a reasonable price since these types of dealers usually have a lot of overhead cost running physical retail stores. You may also find the herb in traditional herbal supplement stores, but again, you may run into some of the same issues.

Meanwhile, the best place to purchase tongkat ali root supplement is through an online store that is specifically dedicated to providing customers with a genuine, and highly concentrated product for a great price.

Conclusion

Tongkat ali deserves respect after all of its beneficial effects that have been widely discussed and researched. Today’s post only summarizes the numerous beneficial effects that this ancient herbal remedy has to offer us. From low testosterone problems, hypogonadism, osteoporosis, decreased libido, low muscle mass, and strength, to depression and many, many other common health problems – it seems that tongkat ali can help to treat all of them in just a short time. Combine this amazing herbal supplement with a few lifestyle changes and watch as your life transforms. We assure you that you will be just as amazed by this simple, yet powerful, herbal supplement as we are. Do not hesitate to continue to our official website to purchase your own bottle of tongkat ali extract and start improving your life as soon as possible.

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Fran Sanchez, BSc MSc

About Fran Sanchez, BSc MSc

Fran Sanchez, founder of Herbolab, graduated from Uppsala University (Sweden) with a master in molecular biology and Karolinska University (Sweden) with a degree in medical sciences and business. He then moved to Singapore to run e-commerce operations in a pharmaceutical company, until eventually he could fulfil his dream of creating a brand dedicated to help men reach their peak performance. Drawing on his experience as a lifelong multi-sport athlete and cutting edge medical and scientific research, Fran launched herbolab tongkat ali as flagship supplement in April of 2014. Fran now spend most of his time weight lifting and creating content dedicated to improve people’s lives.

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