Essential Facts About Tribulus Terrestris
- Botanical name: Tribulus terrestris, Zygophyllacaea
- Common name: Gokshur
- Sanskrit names: Gokshuraka, Trikata, Svadamshtra
- Hindi name: Gokhru
- English names: Caltrops, Puncture vine, Goat’s head, Devil’s weed
- Rasa (taste): Sweet, bitter
- Virya (action): Cooling
- Vipaka (metabolism, post-digestive effect): Sweet
- Doshas: Considered tridoshic, balances all doshas, particularly effective for balancing Vata
Tribulus Terrestris is one of the most popular herbs around the world, largely because of its alleged use as a performance enhancement drug for men. It’s found all throughout Asia and Africa, southern Europe, and Australia.
The herb itself is a small and prostrate herb with silky hairs. It has stipulate leaves that are opposite and often unequal. The plant grows solitary flowers of yellow or white. The fruits themselves have 5 angles and look a bit like globes.
The native habitat for Tribulus is the Sub-Himalayan forest regions of India. It can also be found naturally in Burma. The plant is adapted for growth in dry locations where many other plants have a hard time surviving.
The fruit (and the seeds, separately) as well as the root.
There are a number of different compounds of interest found in Tribulus. A number of steroidal saponins, including cistocardin, diosgenin, tribuloin, and dioscin can be found as well as a number of lignanamides: tribulusamides A and B, terrestriamide and coumaroyltyramine.
Medicinal Uses of Tribulus Fruit
There are a number of powerful tribulus fruit benefits.
Enhancing Sexual Health
The most popular use for tribulus, at least in the modern world, is for helping to enhance sexual health and performance. It is believed to possess androgenic effects, and help the body produce more testosterone.
While there is some debate as to whether or not tribulus actually enhances testosterone levels, there’s no doubt that it can be useful for boosting sexual health. Tribulus can help enhance sexual performance, fight off erectile dysfunction, and boost libido.
Helps Fight Diabetes
Tribulus has been shown to be hypoglycemic, which can be useful for helping to reduce the impact of blood glucose for people struggling with diabetes.
Helps Enhance Heart Health
One of the most impressive uses for tribulus is for keeping the heart healthy. In one study, tribulus was shown to help people with heart disease go into remission. Tribulus helps to do this by dilating the arteries and enhancing circulation throughout the cardiovascular system.
Usage and Dosage of Tribulus Fruit
The dosage and usage of tribulus can vary immensely depending on the requirement of the patient using it.
Tribulus is most commonly available in powdered form, and can be mixed with a variety of other herbs depending on the need of the patient.
Diabetics, for example, could create a decoction from Gokshura, Guggulu resin, Triphala, Trikatu, and Musta.
It’s also used in certain popular Ayurvedic formulations, like Chyawanprash. The best way to find out how to best use tribulus for your own health is to contact a local herbalist or Ayurvedic practitioner.
Reviewed by Dr. Jayant Lokhande, MD (Botanical Drugs), MBA (Biotechnology)