Tribulus terrestris Benefits

Tribulus terrestris
Latin Name

Tribulus terrestris

Also Known As

Gokshura, Puncture Vine, Caltrop, Yellow Vine, and Goathead


Southern Europe, Southern Asia, Africa, and Northern Australia

Parts Used


Traditional Use and Health Benefits

Tribulus Terrestris is native to sub-Himalayan forests of India, Burma, and several other countries. A short crooked tree with persistent fruit in the cold season, it is common in all forests, frequently found in villages and worshipped by the Hindus during Dasara festival.

With a long history of use in Traditional Chinese Medicine and Indian Ayurvedic practice, it was widely used to treat sexual disorders in both men and women and as a remedy for erectile dysfunction in men.

Tribulus Terrestris Benefits

Male Sexual Health

A powerful sexual tonic, Tribulus tops the charts of herbal Viagra. Studies have shown that this herb elevates the luteinising hormone (LH), increasing the levels of free testosterone in healthy males. This in turn will increase sexual desire and libido, improve the quality of sperm whilst making it more nimble, in some cases it will help to remedy erectile dysfunction and it has been proven to be helpful in cases of premature ejaculation. One of the main compounds of this herb is a phytochemical known as "protodioscin", with one study showing it helps to boost nitric oxide production. Nitric Oxide is an essential element of an erection, enabling the smooth muscles of the penis to relax, allowing uninterrupted blood to flow to this area. Tribulus will stimulate the production of sex hormones without affecting other bodily systems.

Female Sexual Health

Tribulus Terrestris is most commonly seen as a male herb; however research has found that it dramatically improves sexual performance and sensitivity for most women. This Ayurvedic herb has been indicated for use in sexual health for many years.

Tribulus has been found to alleviate symptoms of the menopause, such as hot flushes, depression and emotional instability. Regular use of this herb during the menopause can treat the loss of sexual interest at this time. One study found that it improved sexual desire in 49 out of 50 women, another study reported that women who supplemented with Tribulus experienced greater sexual desire, arousal and satisfaction than those who took the placebo. This potent herb may stimulate androgen receptors in the brain, helping the body respond positively to hormones such as testosterone. Although testosterone is associated with men's health, free testosterone production in women also has a positive effect on libido.

Bodybuilding/Athletic Performance

As a bodybuilding or training supplement, Tribulus is hard to beat. It contains one steroidal saponin in particular – protodioscin – which is thought to be the active nutrient responsible for this herbs popularity amongst athletes.

Specifically, protodioscin promotes the release of nitric oxide which in turn increases the flow of oxygen rich blood to muscles, and enables better use of nutrients such as protein. At the same time protodioscin stimulates the pituitary gland resulting in it producing LH, thus promoting higher testosterone levels.

As well as contributing to a boost in testosterone levels, Tribulus Terrestris can also help to increase stamina during a workout as well as aiding post workout muscle recovery.

Typical Use

When taking tribulus as a powder take 1 or 2 teaspoons a day in a little milk or juice.

When taking Tribulus Terrestris as a Tincture-
Suggested Dosage:
Up to 5-10ml daily Spread over the day
or as directed by an herbal practitioner.

Folklore and History

The Chinese have used Tribulus for over 400 years. Many different cultures have used it for a number of purposes. For example, the Greeks used Tribulus terrestris as a diuretic and a mood-enhancer.

Tribulus terrestris

1. Dioscin, protodioscin, diosgenin, etc.
This first group has an effect on sexual performance and may treat various sexual disorders, sexual energy level and strength by increasing the percentage of free testosterone level for men, and effects pregnenolone, progesterone, estrogen, etc. The hormone balancing effects of Bulgarian Tribulus Terrestris for women makes this product best for premenstrual syndrome and menopausal syndrome.

2. Sterols betasitosterols, stigma, etc.
This second group protects the prostate from swelling and in combination with the X steroidal saponins (third group listed below), protects the prostate from cancer.

3. Proprietary steroidal saponins currently referred to as X steroidal saponins.
These X steroidal saponins effect the immune system. They have been demonstrated to possess anti-bacterial and anti-viral (especially anti-herpes) effects. Bulgarian Tribulus Terrestris may be used internally and externally to treat herpes, and virus infections such as influenza and the common cold.


Long term use of Tribulus alone is not recommended due to its diuretic properties.