Tribulus Terrestris Review Does It Raise Testosterone or Make Muscles Stronger?

I like to surf  around at various health and fitness websites because it not only lets me help answer peoples questions but it also allows me get an idea of what people are curious about.  Over the last several months I’ve been noticing  online chatter about Tribulus terrestris as a testosterone booster.  I was a little surprised because tribulus terrestris was big in the early 1900’s and then fell out of favor when people realized it didn’t work.  But maybe things have changed since I last reviewed the research so let me now take a fresh look at the tribulus terrestris research and see if there is anything new going on.

Notice the amounts of tribulus used in the studies below. I’m telling you the amounts so you can compare it to what is in your tribulus supplement.  After reading this, you may want to check out what happened when I took tribulus for a few weeks. Also see my review of the HGH supplement, SeroVital.

What Is Tribulus?

Tribulus or tribulus terrestris (also called puncture vine), is a plant that is found throughout the world.  The term puncture vine stems from rumors that the plant’s thorns are able to puncture bicycle tires. Tribulus, likewise, is Latin for “to tear”, another reference to the plants ability to do damage.

Tribulus trivia: Tribulus also refers to a medieval weapon called a caltrop that was thrown on the grown during warfare to stop enemy horses from advancing. The caltrop was the forerunner of tire spikes, used by law enforcement agencies around the world to puncture car tires.

Does Tibulus Raise Testosterone?

The theory behind tribulus is that it’s supposed to elevate luteinizing hormone, which in turn sends instructions to the testes causing them to make testosterone. More testosterone might mean more muscle growth if combined with proper exercise like weight lifting. In theory it all sounds plausible. Fortunately, there is published research on tribulus so let’s take a look at it.

One randomized, placebo controlled tribulus study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research in 2007 tested tribulus in 24 elite rugby players. The players were split into 2 groups. One group got a placebo while the other received 450 mg of tribulus terrestris. All subjects performed the same weight lifting exercise program and the study lasted 5 weeks.

After the study, the researchers found that tribulus did not improve strength or muscle mass or decrease body fat any better than those who did not get tribulus. In addition, tribulus did not cause any change in the testosterone to estrogen ratio (T/E ratio). In other words, tribulus did not raise testosterone either.

 

In an earlier tribulus study published in 2001, researchers gave either tribulus or a placebo to 15 healthy weight lifters (18 – 35 years of age).  This study was published in the International Journal of Sports Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism. The amount of tribulus used in this study was 3.21 mg per kilogram of body weight.

Translation: A kilogram is 2.2 pounds. So, for example, if you weighted 180 pounds, this equals 82 kilograms. Based on this study, an 82 kg person would get 82 x 3.21 mg = 263 mg of tribulus terrestris.

All subjects performed a periodized weight lifting program (split routine) 3 days per week that worked all major muscle groups. At the end of this study tribulus did not cause any significant changes in body weight and it did not reduce body fat.  Both groups – placebo group and tribulus group – improved strength and endurance.

Ironically, those who got  the placebo experienced a greater amount of muscle endurance in the bench press and leg press than did those who received tribulus. Those getting tribulus did improved muscle endurance on the leg press only –  but it was less than those who got the placebo. This study did not measure testosterone levels.

 

In a study published in 2000 in the International Journal of Sports Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism, 20 young men were given a supplement (called “Andro 6”)  that contained a variety of ingredients including 750 mg of tribulus. Subjects either received Andro 6 or a placebo. All subjects then lifted weights 3 days per week for 8 weeks.  The Andro 6 supplement did not raise testosterone levels or make people stronger.

Androstenedione however was elevated after Andro 6 supplementation.  This study did not specifically say that tribulus didn’t work. Rather, it found that the supplement Andro 6 didn’t work. Andro 6 contained several ingredients (Saw palmetto, DHEA, androsteinedione etc.) in addition to tribulus. In theory it could be possible that the other ingredients in Andro 6 suppressed tribulus but that is pure speculation.

What about women who take tribulus? In a small study from 2008 a titled Short term impact of Tribulus terrestris intake on doping control analysis of endogenous steroids investigators looked at how tribulus altered hormones in 2 women who took the herb for 2 days. The women took 500 mg, taken 3 times a day (1500 mg/day total). Tribulus did not alter testosterone, luteinizing hormone, DHEA or the testosterone to estrogen ratio (TE ratio).

Of course, the big drawbacks of this study were that it only involved 2 women and it only lasted 2 days. I don’t see many tribulus studies employing women so I thought it was worth including.

Update. Thanks for a reader, I was made aware of another study of tribulus and women. It was published in 2014 and titled,Tribulus terrestris for treatment of sexual dysfunction in women: randomized double-blind placebo – controlled study. The study – which was part of the lead researcher’s phD dissertation –  involved 60 women in Iran with low libido, who were either given 7.5 mg of tribulus or a placebo for 4 weeks.

The women who got the tribulus reported – via surveys- that they had significantly improved sex lives compared to those getting the placebo. This is an interesting study and while I do feel it adds value to the conversation, I would have liked to see the survey results compared to hormonal changes. The researchers unfortunately did not measure any hormones.

Tribulus And Sex

Given the rep that Tribulus has for raising testosterone, it’s natural that this herb would be used in male enhancement supplements as well. I searched the National Library of Medicine for:

  • Tribulus erection
  • Tribulus sex

I highlight the following studies as an example the types of research that is currently published.

In a 2013 study titled , Effects and Mechanism of Action of a Tribulus terrestris Extract on Penile Erection, tribulus helped improve erections in rabbits (8 rabbits were used) both when the rabbits where given tribulus orally, as a supplement, as well as when isolated cells were incubated in tribulus solution.

In a 2012 study titled Evaluation of the aphrodisiac activity of Tribulus terrestris Linn. in sexually sluggish male albino rats, Tribulus improved sexual activity in lab “sexually sluggish” lab rats.

Other similar studies are also available, but since they don’t involve people, I won’t mention them.

What I did not see were any studies on humans. Given the general thinking online that tribulus helps erections, why isn’t there any human studies showing it works or doesn’t work?

Given the lack of human research, I don’t think anyone can say if tribulus helps erections or not.

 

Tribulus Side Effects

I think in most healthy people tribulus, is probably safe. That said, I personally noticed a strange side effect when I took tribulus for a few weeks so see my experiment with tribulus for more info.

In a case report from 2004 a male bodybuilder was treated for gynaecomastia (male breast enlargement) after taking an herbal supplement containing tribulus. It’s hard to say how likely this is given that the prevalence of gynecomastia among weight lifters who use tribulus is unknown. There is also some speculation that tribulus might raise blood sugar levels. This may be an issue for diabetics who use tribulus supplements.

Tribulus terrestris doesn’t appear to have been studied very much in humans about what its side effects might be. Some lab rat research hints that it may increase the size of the prostate. This may be a problem for men who have prostate issues like BPH. This effect has not been proven in humans as far as I know. Other research –  again from lab rats  – hints that tribulus may lower blood sugar. In theory, this may be a problem for diabetics.

Does Tribulus Work?

As I first told people in my book Nutritional Supplements: What Works and Why, I personally don’t feel that bodybuilders or strength trainers need tribulus. I made that statement based on the peer reviewed evidence and this revisiting of the tribulus research reinforces my opinion.

In all fairness, I must say however that the tribulus terrestris research  conducted so far is, for the most part, less than spectacular. Most studies either don’t last long enough or use far too few people for my tastes.  I would love to see a tribulus study that is at least 6 months long and had 100 or more people (who are familiar with strength training) and who receive amounts of tribulus greater than has been used in studies to date. To my knowledge this tribulus study has not been published.

Another reputed testosterone booster supplement is Pink Magic which has Massularia acuminata so see my review of that for more information.

Also, most the research about tribulus raising testosterone is based not on people but on lab rat studies.  While lack of evidence doesn’t necessarily mean something doesn’t work, based on what I see, I just don’t think tribulus ready for Prime Time. There are many Tribulus products sold, but as of right now, none stand out to me as being superior to the rest. For those who are interested and want to compare prices, here are all the tribulus supplements on Amazon to see what others have to say.

What do you think?

Comments

  1. Lane Pepper says

    Testosterone is mainly a male hormone that is also responsible for development of sexual characteristics. It is also available in women in lower quantities. It has been shown that women with a higher level of testosterone would have higher libido than their colleagues.There an imbalance in the blood levels of these sex hormones as a result of pituitary tumor would lead to sexual dysfunction or poor libido.

  2. Joe says

    Lane, agreed that testosterone does play a role in sex drive but even when female testosterone is optimal, libido may still be effected. Libido -esp in women – is more complex than just hormones.

  3. Dakota says

    Joe, I’ve noticed that some people respond to the supplements different than others. But I went on recruiters assistance and had to wear my dress blues, two months later after taking tribulus, when I tried on my dress blue coat for the MC birthday ball I couldn’t even get my arm down the sleeve. bodybuilding.com is selling a 3 month supply of tribulus for $20, give it a shot and see if it’s as good to you as it was for me.

  4. Jeff says

    Joe,

    Did you try it yet and if so did you get any positive results?

    Also I would like to ask if anyone here has tried Testafen? It’s the seeds from the fenugreek herb and I heard it is really good at raising testosterone levels.

  5. Joe says

    Jeff, I have not tried it. So many supplements, so little time. Its an experiment Id have to do with my doctor for the blood tests. If you want to try it and report your
    testosterone levels before and after a month I would be very interested in reading your results.

    Im not sure about Fenugreek but I know its been in other supplements Ive looked at (use the search box to find them)

    Did you see my review on Ageless Male? http://supplement-geek.com/ageless-male-review-resettin-testosterone-mytosterone-alpphastat/

  6. PDH says

    I note that the studies that showed no increase in testosterone were on male athletes, people who probably are already producing healthy amounts of the hormone, but the Bulgarian study that showed an increase in testosterone was on men with fertility problems, men who may have a lower than usual testosterone level.
    Maybe what is going on is that the Tribulus Terrestris is providing a missing vitamin or mineral to men with low testosterone allowing them to produce a healthy amount but it is not stimulating those who already have a healthy amount of testosterone to produce more.

  7. Joe says

    PDH, that’s an interesting observation. If that is the case, maybe it is like HMB and works best in beginners or those who have health issues?

  8. DJ says

    I’m 54 and my testosterone is low. My doc suggested tribulus supplement as an alternative to testosterone therapy. I don’t know about athletes, but that’s not why I’m taking it. I want my libido back, stronger erections and stamina. My doc says his experience with trubulus is that it works well for this purpose. I’ve spoken to others who are taking it and they say it makes sex as good as it was when they were in their 20s. I hope they’re all right. (My wife does too!)

    • jake says

      I’ve just been reading a few of these comments and and I agree somewhat and others not so much. my experience with tribulus is that I have taken prohormones in the past which for the worst part after using them have significantly reduced my sex drive and my test levels.

      I found them extremely good for recovery and getting my libido back to normal. but I can say recently I’ve been hit and miss but I can tell you one fact, if I take one tablet once in a whole week or even a month, that night I will wake up with an erection! and seems to last all night! and I’m not exaggerating in the slightest.

      so my speciation is that it doesn’t help healthy males producing high test levels make any more, only for people producing low levels it will help build normal amounts of muscle equal to a man who is producing naturally a high amount.

      for people who already have high test levels it won’t help build extra muscle than they ready are, HOWEVER it will increase sex drive.

      bound test and free test in the bloodstream are different

      • Joe says

        Jake, at the start of your comment you said tribulus reduced your sex drive /libido and testosterone levels while at the end you say it increased them. can you clarify?

        Erections lasting all night does not sound normal (remember the viagra warning about erections lasting longer than 4 hours). Do you use the same brand of tribulus all the time or does this happen no matter which brand you use?

        what were your testosterone levels before tribulus and after and how long did it take to see the change? Just curious.

  9. Joe says

    DJ, please let me know if tribulus helps your libido. There is research on tribulus helping sex drive but its mostly in animals. Here is a study that also used primates

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18068966

    the issue with this study is that they injected tribulus but I’m intrigued that it seemed to help primates.

    Since you know your testosterone levels, can you get your levels checked again after a month or so after using tribulus and let me know how they changed. Do let me know the actual #s if you do. While I’ve never seen a study in humans, I’ve been interested by the animal research.

  10. ray says

    I took tribulus @ 4 grams a day for 4 weeks without any other supps. I did notice some increased aggression in the gym and mild strength gains and crazy libido. I think the dosage used in the tribulus studies were too low personally. Looking forward to taking it again.

    • Joe says

      Ray its possible that the studies did not use enough tribulus. no study is perfect. how much tribulus were you taking and what brand did you use?

  11. PaulD says

    I used Tribulus Raw Power and I am a 19 year old male that lifts hard everyday. Bought this due to the positive reviews on here, have been talking for 2 weeks and haven’t noticed anything… no improvements in workouts or libido.

    Then I switched to using the Dr max Powers Testosterone Boost (it was recommended by a College Football Coach I am working with). The Dr Max Powers brand is a very good testosterone booster. I use it before going to the gym and it does give you extra power (has an effect on libido as well).

    Did not experience any side effects so far (6th week of use). Recovery seemed to not be as painfully sore after lifting the next couple of day.

    • Joe says

      Paul, since your 19 years old I expect that your testosterone levels are as high as they will ever be. When you say that Dr Max Powers is
      ” a very good testosterone booster” , did you actually get your testosterone levels tested before using this supplement? If not, its hard to tell if it actually raised your T levels or not.

      I must say I am highly concerned with the college football coach recommending a T booster to a 19 year old man. Paul can you tell me the educational background of this football coach? I’m honestly curious. I cant figure out why he would say “try this stuff” given your currently very high T levels – and without knowing your health history. I know you feel this product is working and it may be doing something – but I doubt if its raising your T levels.

      I have had my doubts about the level of nutrition education of HS and college sports coaches for a long time now. My advice is listen to what the coach says about football – but when it comes to supplements or other areas of nutrition, take what they say with a BIG grain of salt, unless you know for sure that they have a college background in nutrition, health or medicine.

  12. Brandon says

    Im 17 and currently trying to build loads of muscle. although only 145 and 5-10, im pretty big (mainly upper body). however, my chest and arms were kinda squishy. After taking Tribulus for 3 weeks so far my arms and chest are rock solid, i shave almost everyday (change from 1.5 weeks), and my sexual libido is triple that of a normal teenager.

    • Joe says

      Brandon what brand are you using? Remember at 17 your testosterone is super dooper high. I doubt if tributuls raised it higher. Also remember that having more testosterone is not always great – one side effects is that it stops bone growth, making you shorter. I dont think Tribulus is doing that to you. just wanted to mention it.
      what brand of tribulus are you using?

  13. Brandon says

    I’m using Bulgarian tribulus 500mg 45% saponins… Even if it isn’t adding testosterone, something in the last three weeks have sparked a change, I take Uni-liver pills, Razor8 pre-workout, Concrete creative, Universal Torrent, and whey. But the only thing new to my regiment is the tribulus and I’m seeing changes.. Maybe the placebo effect is producing higher reps, competitiveness, and higher libido, and therefore larger gains?

    • Joe says

      Thanks Brandon, I will add a follow up tribulus review to my list and see if I can see if I can find out anything else.

  14. Vanessa says

    I’m thinking of taking tribulus for women for my libido I’m 37 and for about 2 years my libido has disappeared. Ive had a blood test to check my hormones but it came back clear. My doctor said that it can happen to some women and there is nothing you can do about it.

    Ive taken clymax for women the first time i took it it worked wonders I’ve tried it again 6 months latter and nothing. My husband brought tribulus terrestris plus that’s what made me do some research. I also lift weights but I’m more interested in the libido side of it. So fingers crossed!

      • Marie says

        Hi Joe, I’m a 44 year old single mom and I’m training for a fitness competition next year. My coach has advised me to start taking Tribulus to increase my muscle mass and promote leanness and I know he would not recommend anything to me that didn’t work.

        Thanks
        Marie

        • Joe says

          Marie, I’m sure your coach means well but based on the research so far, I dont have much faith in it. If your coach has other research that I missed, I would be very willing to look at it and even add it to my review as well.

          Regardless, I do wish you much success with your fitness competition!

          • Marie says

            Maybe it has to be taken in conjunction with a good exercise programme and a clean diet, it’s not a magic pill that’s gonna work alone. I also take creatine which had the same sort of opinions, I’ve been taking it for 3 months now and the results are very obvious

          • Joe says

            Marie, thats interesting. Are you using creatine monohydrate or are you using one of the more specialized types like ethyl ester creatine?

          • Marie says

            Hi, I’m taking 100% pure micronized creatine monohydrate with no side effects and no water gain, in fact my strength has increased, recovery is better and I’m leaning out more.

          • Joe says

            Marie, creatine monohydrate would be the type Id recommend as well as its the type that is actually studied. I dont think you need “micronized” creatine though (I think that word is more marketing hype than science) but if its working thats great. Odd you have not gained weight since that is one of the most consistent side effects. Either way I’ll take it :)

          • Marie says

            Hi, the only weight gain I’ve had is through putting on muscle mass, I’m getting a lot leaner & more toned. The other problem is I suffer with bad IBS so I find a lot of foods disagree with me. I live on chicken, fish and protein oaty shakes. Take a look at the link below, I had it published a few weeks ago,

            http://www.realfemalebodybuilding.com/fitness/i-love-lifting-heavy-weights-and-transforming-my-physique-says-bodybuilding-mom-of-four-and-fitness-athlete-of-the-month-marie-phillips.html

          • Joe says

            Marie, you look great! you’re an inspiration especially because of what you accomplished having IBS also. Keep doing what you are doing :)

          • Marie says

            Thank you for your kind words. You also keep doing the research, what you do is so useful to us all. It’s all interesting stuff.

          • Marie says

            I’ve been researching weightlifting for women, clean eating and effective supplements for months now and it’s not very often (if ever) that you come across a really useful informative site that actually captures your attention and makes you wanna read more, that’s why I say keep going with your good work

          • Joe says

            Thanks Marie! That’s the best compliment Ive had all week :)
            BTW what are there any supplements in the UK advertised on TV? I’ve been wanting to review products in other countries for a while.

          • Marie says

            No there are only really USN supps & maybe a few others advertised on the fitness channel but none on regular British tv channels. I don’t know why. As a newbie I have to get advice from my coach and guys like yourself. Especially difficult for me as I don’t wanna make my condition worse by taking something awful. So far I’ve been lucky.

  15. Mike says

    I’ve tried the Tribestan brand many years ago and did in fact have very positive results. I was in my mid 20’s then and used it as a way to boost natural test production. I feel it indeed do that. My libido greatly increased and I had noticeably more endurance and strength while weight training.

    Lately (now mid 30’s) I’ve used the NOW Foods brand Tribulus at 2000mg p/day with fantastic results. Same outstanding increased libido as well as more power, strength, and endurance in the gym.

    I believe the limited studies done have the daily dosage too low. I also believe not all tribulus is manufactured the same. Which may or may not negatively impact tests as well as user reviews.

    All I know is this stuff works VERY well. I have tried 3000mg p/day with outstanding results, but normally keep my dosing at 2000 mg p/day. Furthermore, there is actual dried herbal tribulus as well as tribulus extract. The extract is a medium tan color while the dried herb looks simply like dried herbs.

    The NOW Foods brand clearly appears to be the dried herb formula visibly. I know not all products work for everyone and each person reacts differently, but this is one product (for me) that definitely does what it claims. Shame better human testing will never probably be done.

  16. Danny says

    Hi there, I stumbled across this whist looks at sups, iv just bought the LA muscle brand of Tribulus Terrestris.
    Im 6ft 3, 18yrs of age, 92kg and a do crossfit training.

    I will keep you guys posted in the next month on my progress, these are the doses ill be taking:

    2 capsules,2 times a day leading to 3 times a day in the final week @ 250mg per cap
    = 1000mg per day – 1500mg per day

  17. michael says

    just got some myself 57yrs old 86kilo doing cardio on empty stomach 2xcaps 3x a day hoping to shift last bit of belly fat

    • Joe says

      Michael, keep me posted,. I’m actually experimenting with this stuff now myself and will report what happens in a few weeks.

  18. says

    I personally use Tribulus sold thru Amazon, it works great for me as a libido booster and harder erections. I have low t and am going to test it soon. I don’t yet if it ups the t but I know it ups the libido and makes my testicle slightly larger which I guess is them producing more t. I will know in a few weeks and repost results. http://www.amazon.com/Tribulus-Raw-Power-concentrated-enhancement/dp/B002HO9H4M/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1317442723&sr=8-2
    http://www.amazon.com/Arthur-Guess/e/B002I8EDEQ/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_2?qid=1317443293&sr=8-2

  19. says

    Joe, I am 49 and have had my T tested twice in the last 3 yrs. Both times tested in “normal” range for my age but on the lower side of normal. What is your opinion of which brand has the the best purity, results, history for Tribulus? I would like to raise the T to still normal range, but the upper end.

    • Joe says

      Beemer, at this point I dont endorse any specific brand of tribulus. Ive never seen any research that one brand stands out more than others and Im still not convinced any tribulus brand raises T levels. What I can say is if you want to try this pick a brand from a respected company (check the comments for links to some brands) and after a month get your T levels checked again. that will give you the best idea of something is working. I wish I had better advice than this.

  20. Vanessa says

    Joe, I furthered the research and didn’t think it was a good idea to take tribulus on its own due to the high testosterone levels (i dont want to grow hairs on my chest lol). I purchased a product called health fusion that has tribulus and horny goat weed in it with Chinese herbs.

    Unfortunately it hasn’t done a great deal for my libido but it has reduced my fatigue and i have a lot more energy. Even though i wasn’t that interested in whether it helps muscle mass it turns out that it has helped.

    My muscles seem more defined in the past month. I have osteoarthritis and i found out that it can actually affect ones libido. I still have a months worth of health fusion left and i will just have to keep experimenting with different things for the libido. Will keep you posted :)

    • Joe says

      Vanessa thanks for the update. Glad you are seeing at least some results with your muscles and fatigue. Its interesting what you said about osteoarthritis affecting libido. I wonder if that might be due to sex-induced OA pain? In other words – if it hurts I wont do it? Do keep me posted on your progress :)

    • Joe says

      Alex, yes thats what I saw also in my review a lot of rat research. its interesting but it looks like they did not measure testosterone or nitric oxide levels in the rats. They also gave the rats tribulus based on body weight – 2.5, 5 and 10 mg per kilogram of body weight. Its only a guess but If it really did work, that might be more than is in many tribulus supplements.

  21. michael says

    hi well it been 2 weeks had had some interesting effects bursts of hotness soon after taking i have had trouble sleeping for a number of years and since taking tribulus my sleep is so much deeper still wake alot but in the morning feel i have slept really well(weird) now i do not do a lot of weights twice a week sometimes three times muscle are much fuller not changed my work out or diet but i am losing weight(fat) will keep you updated

  22. jourdan C. says

    man tribulus has changed the game of weightlifting for me i mean wow im 162 pound and i can now squat 565 dead lift 505 and bench 315 with ease no second thought about and i feel great with no side effects except i wanna do my ol lady all the time and that not bad and i think it helped me with my forty time as well thanks Tribulus

  23. Shah says

    Hi Joe,
    I am 36 years old and i have been having very low sex drive from past 10-12 years. I have been tested and my T level is between 7-10 (UK measurement normal range is 10-35). My GP says at my age 10 is very low and ideally it should be at least 25. I am worried about it and just came through your site. What would you advise me?
    Regards

    • Joe says

      HI Shah, what is your doctor recommending to help correct your low testosterone level? Keep in mind that one test may not be enough to diagnose your low Testosterone level so your doctor may ask for a second test in a month to compare. I suggest you talk to your doctor about what you might be able to do to correct the issue. there are things he/she can prescribe – like andro gel – to correct this. Strength training may also help some.

      You did not mention what your body weight was but if you are overweight, I suggest losing the excess weight. Low testosterone levels have also been seen in overweight man and this also includes men who have type II diabetes. If you fall into this category speak to your doctor about it.

      Hope that helps Shah

  24. vin says

    Hi Joe:
    I have read the posts on this site with interest. Not much has been discussed about the side effects of Tribulus Terrestris.
    Does Tribulus have negative side effects, particularly on the blood pressure?

    • Joe says

      Vin, I have never seen where Tribulus raised blood pressure. I did blog recently about my personal experience when I tried tribulus http://supplement-geek.com/tribulus-terrestris-side-effect-heart/ I thought it caused my heart to skip beats after I stopped taking it it but that was my personal experience and Ive never see anybody else say that it happened to them.
      One study noted that tribulus might increase prostate size http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12127159?dopt=Abstract so it might aggregate BPH. Some have said that it might cause dehydration. in theory that might make your BP go up but I have never seen any good proof of this.

      Overall mostly I dont see anything “concrete” about tribulus being bad and I have not see anything serious associated with tribulus. Has anything odd happened to you after you tried tribulus?

  25. vin says

    Joe:
    Thanks for your comments.
    I was looking for a T booster and many advertisements touted Tribulus as a T booster. My T level is 278 whereas my doctor thinks it should be close to 500. The doctor did not know of any medication that would boost the T level.

    My concern is that the low T level may be the cause of muscle loss that I have experienced over the last few months.

    From the details on this site Tribulus does not seem to help.

    Is there any natural supplement that is effective for boosting T level which you will recommend?

    • Joe says

      Vin, have you been lifting weights? That will slow muscle loss and help you build your muscles back. For the large muscles – legs, chest and back, find a resistance you can lift between 8-12 repetitions only. When you can do 3 sets of more than 12 reps increase the weight. If you have not lifted weights before, make the weight lighter so you can lift it 15-20 reps and do this for about 3 months (you only need to do 1 set for the first 2-3 months which is good if time is a problem). The lifter weights will help give your tendons/ligaments time to get stronger. they usually take longer than muscles.

      So far I have not found anything that I have faith in unfortunately. You can always try tribulus for a month and get your T levels tested. that will be the best way to know if its working. I don’t think it will do this but I could be wrong. Some people say androsteinedione can raise T levels but in men it just seems to raise estrogen instead.

  26. Mike says

    Any reason those with such low T levels are not getting doctor prescribed Testosterone injections? You’ll feel like a million bucks, stop the muscle wasting, have more engery, more sex drive, etc.

  27. Dan says

    Why attempt to increase testosterone through artificial means? Deadlifting and squatting is proven to increase testosterone output as does eating right and sleeping. If your gonna take a supplement to increase your testosterone levels, don’t be a pussy just go for the real deals and real steroids.

  28. Tom says

    Hi im just bought Tribulus 20,000 today, each capsule contains 20,000mg and you take them twice a day. Im 24 years old and keen to see the effect it has on me. Will post results!

  29. Ollie says

    im 15 (i know kinda young) i cycled trib for 4 weeks on then 8 weeks off. i got some awesome results, 10kg more benching each week. but by the end of the 4 weeks i felt really deflated and it messed with my stomach, maybe it was the brand (pro body 800mg) and i took two of those a day. im back on it again and i’ll keep you posted on any more gains

  30. KEVY says

    I am 28 years old. I had been feeling pretty sluggish for a while and even though I have been trying to follow a healthy diet my energy levels had been pretty low.

    This will sound very naive, but I just assumed that maybe my T levels were low. I had read about Tribulus and decided to go out and buy some. I bought the TwinLab tribulus fuel. I went with TwinLab because this company has been around for a long time and to me that’s a sign of a reputable company. I’ve been taking it for about three weeks and I have noticed a little bit of an increase in energy but I’ll take whatever little boost of energy I can get to keep up with both my kids.

    I don’t follow an exercise regimen so as expected I haven’t gained any muscle mass or anything like that. My libido has never been a problem and nothing has changed in regards to that. I will admit and this might sound a little cliche’ but I have been a little more aggressive lately :) .

  31. KEVY says

    something else that I forgot to mention is that after a few days of taking tribulus my sleep improved tremendously.
    I have to attribute this to the tribulus because that is the only thing that I’ve done different these past few weeks.

  32. says

    Joe, thank you for the interesting forum. I am a gym owner and we sell a lot of tribulus and a new T-booster called A-HD. I’m not yet sold on the herbal products boosting t-levels just yet. I am 30 years old, workout everyday and have been experiencing mild-moderate fatigue in the late afternoons (which is something new to me). I know t-levels start to decrease around 30 so I am going to cycle 1,000mg tribulus and see if there are any effects. I am a chiropractor also and have some M.D. buddies that I may try to get a before and after blood androgen level screening.

    • Joe says

      Aaron thanks for writing and keep me posted on anything you discover about pre/post testosterone screening.

  33. Mack says

    Hey, I’m 19 just bought the GNC Pro Performance AMP Strength VitaPak. It contains 300Mg of Tribulus along with Mega men sport multi, Amplified creatine 189, And an Anabolic Primer(which is Fenugreek seed extract) Im taking that with just whey protein. Ill keep ya’ll posted on how she is treating me.

  34. Eddie says

    Hi, my name is Eddie I’m 37 years old and recently i had problem with my join pain . When to bone doctor and did a lots of test, and they just found out i have low T 203 out of 348, so depress, sleepless, have to to bathroom every 10 minus, tired but my libido not too bad, i google for t therapy and it really scare me because the side effect of those chemical included prostate cancer ,
    so, anyone have tried this please let me know, i just orders some of TT out of swansonvitamins.com and think about give it a try , i just one gain t naturally and the last think i want to do are use drug
    Please, help me with this, my family depending on me
    p.s: sorry for my English, because I’m not born i US

    • Joe says

      Eddie since you know your testosterone level know that’s good. try the tribulus for a month and test your testosterone level again and see if it changes. thats the only way you will know if it works. If you do this, will you write back and tell me what happened. ‘d apprecaite that.

  35. Joe says

    24 year old healthy male. Taking vitamin shoppe brand trib. I don’t really know if it’s doing anything for my t after a week and a half or so of use. What I can tell you is it makes me sort of tired and extremely increases my appetite.

    • Joe says

      Jeremy, if your referring to my personal experiences with tribulus, your right it is anecdotal but that is what i experienced, however if you are referring to THIS post i reject your assertion. I included ONLY HUMAN studies here which show tribulus does not raise testosterone or make people stronger. the study you quote is a mouse study – and a diabetic mouse study at that.

  36. Sam says

    Joe: I tried Tribustal Plus for 3 months and it helped me build lean muscle. The interesting thing was, no matter how poorly I ate, I wouldn’t put on fat. Here’s the alarming part, I learned that Tribulus can speed up hair loss if you have a pre-existing condition.

    • Joe says

      Sam, interesting, never heard of that before. did the hair loss get better when you stopped tribulus?

  37. Sam says

    Honestly, I didn’t notice a huge difference but the owner of the company replied to my email and agreed that it could affect pre-existing hair loss conditions.

  38. Tom says

    Hi, I , like Mack have the GNC Pro performance Strength vitapak. I have only been taking the multivitamin and the tribulus that are included in the packs, because i heard that fenugreek is useless, and i dont really need the creatine right now.

    I have been lifting weights on the supp for about a month and a half. I have seen some strength increases. but a noticed a side effect similar to steroids, my testicles seem to be some what shriveled up. i know this can happen when taking steroids, because you have too much testosterone.

    can the tribulus really have caused this? i know it says that trib doesn’t increase testosterone, but i dont know man.

  39. al says

    I’m no scientist or doctor but I can give u my personal experience. After body building for about 4 years I’m now trying tribulus I’m taking 2500 mg a day and in just for days I already feel more power at the gym and my wife can’t get enough of me my sex drive is through the roof I love tribulis and highly reccomend it

  40. Wayne says

    I had taken an increased amount of Tribulus….I usually take 2500mgs in the morning and 2500 in the middle of the day…..I would have to say that I certainly felt like I had been on an anabolic, but the great part about it was that I felt like I was 18 again…Great sex drive and killed it in the gym…what I mean by that is that I had a great amount of endurance….and not even feel tired at the end of my workouts….I would workout for an hour non-stop….

    I didn’t think this stuff would do anything so I took the HUGE dosage and it worked!!! Bottom line…I did lower my dosage so I wouldn’t kill my liver and plan on taking it as if I were taking a cycle….I got the TRIB 750 by SNS solutions…it worked so I’m stickn to this brand…I’m not sure how safe it is so I would suggest you research before taking it….and this stuff is not for younger crowds so dont think of taking it til your at least 27 or 28…..I’m just sharing my experience with it. I’m 30 yrs old and I feel great when taking it…..Thank You…Oh and a bottle of 180 caps is around $15…cant beat that!!!!

  41. colin says

    Hi,

    After trials between clients at a gym i worked at i found that testosterone levels were best affected/increased when the tribulus dose was split up to be taken every 8 hours or as close to this split as possible.

    The reason I think this is that the tribulus sends the hormone to the testes to produce testosterone only for a a short amount of time so maintain this hormone is secreted you need to maintain optimum levels of tribulus in the body.

    Taking 300mg tribulus every 8 hours I found a significant strength increase and lifted ome of my personal best, increased stamina, libido and even sperm production. My testicles were increased in size and my girlfriend commented on their size increase, weight and the amount of what they produced after climax.

    Anyone wanting to use this supplement to gain weight needs to do the 3 doses a day split as evenly as possible, also to increase stress hormone in the body they need to do at least 1 or 2 ‘all over’ workouts a week. The point of this is that your body grows on after training according to stress caused during training and the bodies need to build to cope with that same stress in the future.

    If you do a simple chest and triceps workout you may do 3 sets of 10 at 100kg (we’ll keep figures simple) this would be done flat, inc, dec. Then 3 x 10 50kg inc dumbell press, 3 x 10 x 50kg skull crushers followed by 3 x 10 x 50kg close grip chest press. total exertion…… you have moved 6.5 tonnes of weight during the workout which is good by anyone’s measure but by including shoulders, legs, stomach, back and biceps even if only doing half the amount per area would still be 19.5 tonnes of weight moved throughout the workout, increasing the stress hormone massively thus increasing muscle production.

    Hope this helps any gentleman out there struggling to gain that extra stone naturally.

    • Joe says

      colin, thanks for writing. quick question. did you actually get your testosterone levels (and sperm count) tested before starting tribulus and after a month or so of use? You said it increased these things. Im just looking for some corroboration on a blood test. Most men wont get a sperm count I’m sure but testosterone is what I’m really interested in. Did you?

  42. Dave says

    Joe,

    I am 39 and I have taken the vitamin shoppe brand. Each capsule is 625mg. I took it twice a day. My experience was awesome. I felt like I could pick up a car and toss it. About an hour after taking, and in the gym, I would feel a surge of strength. In the bedroom I felt like a gladiator. My wife commented on the strength and stamina. Like others, testicle size and girth (mostly due to veins and blood flow) increased. I have been off it for six months and have had my testosterone check, and it was normal, but low. So that may be why I saw the surge. My doc gave me a test injection, and it helped, but nowhere near the trib.

    So I’m guessing those studies did not test high enough doses? Also I have read that the amount of saponins matters?

    Just thought I’d share my experience.

  43. gaj says

    I am 24 and have been experiencing major fatique. I have a lot of belly fat and low muscle mass. I have problems sleeping and experience depression. My internist tested my Testosterone and it came back 81! He sent me to an endocrinologist and at that test it came back 250. She said to come back in 3 months and get retested. Her normal range was 175-781 so she didn’t seem concerned but I am only 24 and I don’t think it should at the low end of the normal range!!!! Do you think tribulus could help me?

    • Joe says

      Gaj, I still dont believe that tribulus raises testosterone. Nobody has shown me proof it does this. That said Id go to another endocrinologist and get it tested again.
      having a high percent of fat can reduce testosterone but id still get it tested by another doctor just to be sure.

    • jake says

      I didn’t have anything measured before I took tribulus but I stacked it with a post cycle therapy product and I gained 30 pounds in 3 months of taking it. During that time I was having lots of sex and exercising. I feel that it works for some, but not for others. I did have a testosterone test done about a year after taking it. The doctor said I had very healthy levels of usable testosterone, but my overall (free + usable) was a bit low. Then she put me on androgel :) and we KNOW that works :DD.

  44. Robert says

    Joe – I came across this today in among some notes I had taken maybe six or seven years ago, a reference to tribulus terrestris. It’s from an abstract, I’m not sure how to get the full article, maybe you can figure that out.

    The abstract is at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10849504. It suggests two interesting things 1) that the action of tribulus is due to eventual production of DHEA via an intermediary active substance, “Protodioscin”, and 2) that it seems likely that presence of Protodioscin varies considerably depending on where the tribulus is grown. That second point might help explain the widely varying results that are reported by people using tribulus.

    The study is old (published in 2000), but perhaps the full article may yield some useful information, if you can get it.

    • Joe says

      Robert thanks for the abstract. The wording of the abstract caught my attention especially where the author said traditional herbs were a “revolutionary breakthrough.” I would not call them that. The abstract you mentioned appears to be a review of research rather than original research. I looked but couldn’t find the full text of the article either.

      I’ve written a post about erection supplements where a good amount of them were found to contain viagra etc.

  45. dream says

    Tribulus is effective for people who don’t produce the optimal amount of testerone, if you levels are normal its a waste of money. There is no question it works and works well though.

    • Joe says

      Dream, I still have not met anybody who had their testosterone levels measured before tribulus and after tribulus to prove to me that it actually changed them. I’m still awaiting to see the blood tests.

  46. Greg says

    Hello, Joe. Thanks for a great website! Here is some interesting info for you regarding blood test reference ranges that I learned from my endocrinologist today. The reference ranges printed on blood lab reports do not represent “normal” or “healthy” values, but are only an average of the last so many readings obtained by that blood lab.

    That explains why the reference ranges printed on lab reports differ from one lab company to another (ie – Quest vs Lab Corp).

    My doctor explained that routine blood tests (ie – CBC’s) are reasonably accurate because they are drawn on a wide variety of people, healthy and unhealthy alike.

    But testosterone tests are almost always only done on men with symptoms of low testosterone. So the reference ranges for testosterone printed on lab reports are calculated almost entirely from individuals with low testosterone!

    That’s why a “normal” testosterone reading of 350ng/dl can still produce symptoms of low testosterone. My doctor said most doctors don’t know this and she only learned it herself just recently at a conference.

    Doc says healthy test levels are 600-1000ng/dl, in spite of what the reference range on your lab report may say. Listen to your body and don’t get too caught up in the number.

    • says

      Greg’s numbers are backed by a study that was republished by LEF a few months ago on healthy testosterone levels.

      I do not consider bodybuilders normal people, but the equivalent of human lab rats who lead the charge and help regular Joe’s determine usage, their inputs have helped me in big ways. The LEF study reprint summarized how somewhere near a 1000 people over years determined a 530ng testosterone trough to reduce stroke and heart attack by 30%, a significant value. Most peak with just shy of a 2x trough factor, so the 1000ng is accurate if peak. A 1000ng trough would equal about a 1800-2000ng peak, which seems a bit much to me. I target the numbers Greg posted with the 600ng a target trough and 1000-1200ng a target peak, putting me in the upper 1/3 of 25 year old males total T (TT) levels.

      Also, the T peaks are not so much my concern, but controlling E2 (estradiol), which is the bitch hormone and is bad to both men and women if not leveled. When pushing total testosterone (TT) levels you increase Aromatase and then E2 increases and problems happen. E2 needs to be in the 20-30ng range and close to your SHBG. E2 is by far the single most challenging hormone to level in the male body, for me.

      MY EXPERIENCE WITH TRIBULUS: I was using Tribuplex 750. Keep in mind I am hypogonadal from hemochromatosis an iron overload condition that bounced my balls and messed my pituitary function, etc., and is problematic. Without any T supplement my TT will bottom out at around 150-180ng/dl. I ramped off injecting T cypionate to experiment with trib. I was able to raise TT minimally from 150-180 to about 250ng, no where near enough to get in the safe zone of 530-600 minimum to avoid stroke (which I have already had one that caused 50% paralysis for 1.5 hours, fully restored by the grace of God, praise Jesus) and potential heart attack.

      When I ramped up and I was hammering I think 3-4 capsules a day of Tribuplex 750, can’t specifically recall, I set off a tachycardia bout and my heart rate climbed to 180+. I have afib and it caused a trip to the ER. A bag of magnesium later and the rate normalized. I suspect the more than advised dosing of trib set off an epinephrine spike and my heart responded. I have no doubt trib affects vascular flow.

      What I will confirm is that my balls were juiced. I am a multi-cummer (not uncommon to bust 3 nuts an hour) and can bust nuts with rocky the squirrel any day, and I am over 40 years old. Arousal response from visual before she got to my goods was like a teenager when on trib. More aggressive sex, caveman style. Semen output seemed to be 1-1.5 ounces, which always seems to be cool when they cant take it all! What I also noticed is that the second nut, which usually has a substantial drop off in semen output volume, while still less than the first orgasm semen output, had produced noticeably more semen output on the second nut.

      I suspect at the end of the day is that tribulus is good for LH and FSH stimulation, but has minor impact on total T (TT) and bio available T (BAT) values as PREDICATED ON THE AMOUNT OF TESTOSTERONE PRECURSOR you have in your body.

      Joe – while you encourage TT and BAT level testing I think you should also look at LH, FSH and E2 values as associated with tribulus usage. Most supps like trib have a use of some sort, sometimes not what we are looking for as in the case those who seek TT and BAT increase.

      ..but don’t throw the baby batter out with the TT. < comic relief for those who care!

      If what I suspect is true with regards to trib and its effect on LH and FSH, then having the legid cells on your balls flush and juicy and not atrophying away due to external T cypionate supplementation, which shuts off LH and FSH, may be a good thing.

      I also suspect that this conversation of TT and BAT increase needs to migrate to pine pollen cistanche, nettle root, etc's. I am tired of chasing E2 levels I check E2 weekly and keeping 20-30 is impossible. I am hypersensitive to adex and quality zinc has not leveled it and I guess I can try DIM again in a different form, but I am just tired of being disappointed from lab results.

      My thoughts are to find the TT BAT that levels up and holds in more of a square wave than peak and trough spikes. Theoretically it should stifle E2 from being an issue. I am currently engaged in proving my method to arrest gout and CPPD, which after 3 weeks of weekly testing remains positive and optimistic. However, addressing this issue of naturally increasing TT without injections and keep good healthy levels of E2 and SHBG is on my 2014 radar.

      If the square wave theory holds true, then I suspect that taking a mean between trough 600 and peak 1000-1200 or a flat lined, square wave average of 800-900ng/dl sustained with no peaks or troughs, contingent on E2 and SHBG levels normalizes and locked, would be a good initial target with adjusts and tweaks as labs return.

      I want off all drugs that require a script as should everyone reading this post. If I can go shake a tree and get pine pollen that gets me there or part of the way then happy trails here I come.

  47. Greg says

    Joe, I know you are waiting for before-and-after lab results to verify whether tribulus increases testosterone levels, and I’m going to give them to you. My testosterone levels were 345 and I had all the symptoms – muscle loss, slow workout recovery, fatigue, low libido. I am starting tribulus today and getting a follow-up blood test in 8 weeks. I’ll be sure to let you know what kind and how much tribulus I use, and what the new levels are when I get them.

  48. Sean says

    Joe after this being up almost a year i am wondering what you have to say about tribulus. Im a 22 years old 6’1 and 159 pounds sorry my measurements are in American I have recently gone through a period of wasting going from 175 to my current in one month. i am looking for a way to get back my muscle. I don’t have much time to work out and have started taking tribulus.

    • Joe says

      Sean, I think tribulus is a waste of money. Im totally unimpressed with the study results. people say it works for them but it didnt in me (aside from making my heart race). Get your testosterone levels checked now. try it for a month and recheck. Ill bet your testosterone levels don’t change. if they do, please let me know though as I do try to keep an open mind. But since you asked me, I say save your money on tribulus.

  49. danny says

    Hey, Joe! Can you please give a feed back on Core cutter also know Maximizes LX mixing it with Muscle Factor X ?
    It suppose increased your strength, boots energy build muscle and give u a few inches in your penis , I guess. Overall is a dietary supplement. Please email me after you look at this stuff. If you Google search the names you will see them. I only took the factor x so far I started yesterday before work out only one pill. Im nit to sure about the core cutter one .
    Thanks

    • Joe says

      Danny considering all you said it would do, thats usually a sign that its not worth your money. I tried look for its website but mostly just found bogus sites for it. I did finally manage to find a review that told me its ingredients which are :
      zinc, Chrysin and tribulus , nettle Muira Puama, maca root and ginger

      I still believe tribulus is a total bunch of baloney. Some of these other ingredients Ive also covered in other products (put them in the search box to see). My thoughts based on what Ive seen are save your money.

  50. Kris Girrell says

    Hi Joe
    Just purchased some Tribulus (900mg) and setting out on testing it myself. I am 63 and have always had a strong libido but over the last two years it has dropped significantly. I am still active athletically competing on the national level in Taekwondo and work out (aerobic and weight training) 5xwk plus my TKD sessions. I am a psychologist and have studied my body for quite some time and do not take meds (only using herbs and tonics). I will monitor my sex drive and report in from the field.

  51. Justin says

    Hey, I’m 15, 165lbs 6’0 and have started taking Bulgarian Tribulus. Been taking it for about 2 weeks now. Have noticed a lot more energy and muscle growth. Will keep you guys updated.

    • Joe says

      Justin, keep in mind that at 15, your testosterone levels are probably very high (see if you can get them tested to make sure). One of the things testosterone does is stop bones from growing. So, if tribulus really did raise T levels, would it stunt your growth? I don’t think it will because I don’t think tribulus raises testosterone levels. I just wanted to mention this to you to give you something to think about if you are trying to artificially raise you testosterone levels.

    • Joe says

      Justin, in theory that might happen but Ive never heard of this happening. I dont think tribulus works though so I dont think it would stunt your growth. Just eat normally Justin and I think you will be ok. You are only going to be getting stronger over the next 10 years or so anyway.

  52. Enigma says

    I am doing all this backwards….made a large purchase and am just now doing the research ..I really do hope this works, I’m no doctor, and far from a body builder , but I do lift 3/4 times a week…26 going on 27 and these past few months have been hard on me…sleeping bad…feeling tired, workouts are becoming harder, I feel old…I haven’t lifted Mich since high school until about 2 years ago…solid one year hard…

    I have taken different types of creatine n preworkouts, some days ill just lift with a cup of coffee…any who I have a few weeks to wait on this product but I can say this…I don’t think my body will allow me to get stronger …the past few months have been at a stand still…no increase in weight….once I receive I can let u know how it goes

  53. Greg says

    Here is the long awaited update. I took I-Force brand Tribulus, 800mg 3x/day (total 2400mg/day) which is a very high dose, for 6 weeks straight. I felt ZERO improvement in my symptoms so didn’t even bother getting a follow-up blood test.

    I tried HCG injections on the advice of my endocrinologist which gave me a temporary improvement in my symptoms but then regressed after a week or so. All told, after 6 weeks of Tribulus and about 3 weeks of daily HCG injections, my T levels went from 345 to 117!! UGH!!

    I also did some research and the only Tribulus study that showed positive results was done in 1982 by Sopharma which is a Bulgarian manufacturer of Tribulus who used the study results to secure US patents – so there’s a huge conflict of interest.

    Bottom line: one more nail in the Tribulus coffin.

  54. Alex says

    Hi Joe,

    I’m a 53 year old male, 6 ‘1, 180 lbs. I have worked out regularly my whole life. A couple of years ago I noticed that I did not wake up “hard” in the morning and noticed my libido was down. I started taking Tribulus, I prefer TribuPlex 750 by MRM. While I do not notice any significant changes in strength, I did notice that the days I took it I would wake up hard again! I take 2 x 750 mg per day. No side effects.

  55. Alex says

    Thanks Joe. Do you recommend any other supplements that increase testosterone in men that are natural and not steroids.

    • Joe says

      Hi Alex, right now Im pretty skeptical of all T booster supplements. here’s why:

      not a single product Ive seen has ever shown me any proof the product actually raises T levels in humans.

      I say if your going to try a product get your T levels measured first. Try a product and then test them again. If you find one that does this let me know.

  56. pa zimm says

    The research done on healthy males probably cause bad results, since healthy males endocrine system would produce testosterone at a set level for each individual. The tribulus is a precursor for testosterone. So men with a normal endocrine system would have a difficult time raising their T levels. I would like to see a study that uses older men (>40) and with documented low testosterone. If this product is legit, it should increase their T levels.

    • Joe says

      Pa zimm, I dont think tribulus is a precursor to testosterone because a precursor would mean that tribulus is involved in the metabolic testosterone production process. I think its mostly touted as something that “kick starts” (for lack of a better phrase) testosterone production. I’d agree with you that I’d also like to see a study on men with low T levels getting tribulus.

      • Frank says

        I have low t and am balking @ TRT so I may be trying an n=1 experiment using tribulus. I would prefer to use something like Clomid but cant find a doc to work with me.

  57. Nessa says

    HI
    I’m a woman 31 y.o, my personal just recommended Tribulus to help with my performance at the gym. After reading the warnings on the Tribulus bottle about birth defects I wonder if it would have any problems in case I wanna have babies in future … or if it would have any other serious effect in women
    I didnt find much about side effects for women

  58. Roman says

    Hey Joe

    Im an 18 year old and ive been looking into getting a testosterone booster for a while now. I know many young kids like me wanna get it and many older people think its completely redundant seeing as our T levels and Libido should be at their peaks right now..

    But honestly, I am not the case. I was a very late bloomer, always the smallest kid out of all my peers all the way from elementary to about 11th grade when I hit my growth spurt, and I was never a “horny teenager”. I weighed 122 pounds at 6ft tall only a few months ago before i got fed up with looking like a skeleton and started lifting weights.
    My libido is extremely low and sometimes I honestly don’t even feel like a man. I know it sounds terrible, but I’m just being honest.

    I had my T levels tested not too long ago but haven’t got my results back.
    Quite frankly I don’t care if they come back average, because I know i don’t feel average. You seem like the type of guy who has done his research and knows a lot about this kind of stuff, and the fact that you reply to the majority of the comments on this review tells me you re also in it to help people out. I don’t want to take a supplement which will sabotage the testosterone my body is already producing.

    If you could recommend supplements i could start taking to change my situation around, that would be very much appreciated. Sorry for the long post. Thanks again

    • Joe says

      Hi Roman, here is what I think you should do. Call your doctor and find out what your testosterone levels are. better yet, make an appointment and see the doctor and find out. that way you can tell him/her what you just told me. It may be that you are low and maybe need some medication -or maybe not. I do know that testosterone levels do rise as a result of exercise and they stay elevated for a period of time afterward. I really cant recommend any testosterone boosters because honestly I don’t think any of them will work. All of the products Ive looked at so far are very similar in the ingredients they contain and none of them have shown me any good proof they help raise testosterone in humans.

      I really think talking to your doctor about this is be the best thing to do. Remember, its not just about testosterone levels either so it could be more tests are needed to figure out if anything is indeed out of order with what we’d expect in someone who is 18.

      Don’t feel bad or funny because you are not a “horny teenager” either. Not every 18 year old has to feel that way. Sometimes it seems that way because people brag because they feel they are expected to act in a certain way. Please follow up with your doctor. I do feel at the very least, this will help ease the anxiety you are feeling over this – and it may even give you some of the answers you are seeking.

  59. Roman says

    Thanks Joe, I will do that forsure. Ill let you know what the doctor thinks the right thing to do is in case you get asked a similar question in the future

  60. george e. says

    I think tribulus works. I got it and after a week or so I noticed an increase in libido (as measured by morning errections) and also an increase in agression. I am in my late 30s and I had measured testotestorone before taking it but not after it. Anyway, I think if you are in your 20s you will not notice any difference, because your t levels should be high.
    In addition you should not be taking for more than 1 month because then the body increases the FSH hormone or something like that. I had seen a study about this.

    • Joe says

      George, I’m happy for you but I’m older than you are and I saw no difference at all. it was a total waste of money.

  61. K. Five says

    Hey Joe,

    Thanks for the site and all of your work.

    Another n=1 experiment here.

    A few years back I tried it in my late thirties. The response was so ridiculously profound, I was worried that the manufacturer had doped it. The strength gains were concerning. The sexual results were unusual as well. Life at night was normally fine anyway. But, on this stuff just the thought of my wife at inopportune times caused borderline priapism. I was so concerned that I stopped it, thinking that anything this reactive couldn’t be normal. Unfortunately, I didn’t really pursue the issue because I was doing fine in the gym and at home without it. I had purchased it just as another gym supplement and the demands of entering med school and running a business demanded my attention shortly thereafter. Wish I had kept the bottle, now. Having tried Viagra recreationally a couple of times, I can say that the Trib was identical in effect.

    I didn’t have T levels measured before or since. And honestly, I don’t care what the values are or were. I’m a former investigator and will graduate as an MD in a couple of months, I find it impossible to place faith in any study based on my past experiences as well as current involvement in several research programs at the moment.

    There are far too many variables to trust any study that I haven’t personally been involved with. And there are too many dishonest/arrogant PhDs/MDs/Researchers with too much to lose or with too large of an axe to grind for me to trust any of them. This doesn’t begin to address the problems with equipment calibration, measurement standards, etc. Sounds terrible, I know. I take the info, but I don’t hold it as gospel.

    As I observe regularly in a pain management practice, what works well for patient A does nothing for patient B. So, I’m not surprised at all to see such a disparity of results here. That in no way means Trib is a waste of money for everyone (assuming the Trib product isn’t adulterated). Interest in T levels is fine. But, if Trib works via an unknown mechanism and we toss it out because of an unchanged T level, we’ve lost an option that still worked for some.

    In medicine, 10 docs will give 10 opinions with 10 different studies to back each opinion. I’ve lived this for several years now in my training. Its exasperating for us and maddening for the patients. For this reason many of the docs I’m close to will never go to another doc for anything less than an emergency.

    In short if it works for one guy, it works for that one guy. This doesn’t help anyone else. But, the happy patient doesn’t give a rip. Every patient is an entirely new reality because each patient is a unique genetic protein machine. I’ve seen too many patients told that Evidence Based Medicine proves their complaint isn’t legitimate…that they are crazy and need to see a shrink, only to have them leave our office pain free for the first time in years.

    I tried Trib and it appeared to work well. This means nothing for the next guy. If I had tried it and it appeared to not work, again it would mean nothing for the next guy. The next guy is a blank slate.

    Looking back, if I had needed the effects that Trib gave me back then, I couldn’t care less what the lab values said, nor what any studies show (aside from patently obvious “30 people took it 30 people died” results). The only thing pertinent is if it worked for me or not. Barring data collection for future investigation, how it worked is purely academic. I’ve found 50% of patients in my encounters had great results with Melatonin for sleep, and 50% tell me its useless crap. Both groups are correct. To muddy the water further…at a dinner sponsored by Lunesta a physician friend of mine was also told Melatonin was crap. Of course he laughed because he knew the reality. Its as bad as Hollywood portrays it.

    I don’t mean to sound antagonistic. But, for an honest answer, does Trib work? Yes!…if it works for you…and….No!…if it doesn’t work for you.

    Or, deeper down the rabbit hole…did it work because it was doped, or because a rabbit peed on that plant before harvesting? Or, did it not work because there wasn’t any Trib in the capsules?…or the Trib was grown during a bad season or was processed poorly, or because a rabbit peed on the plant before harvesting???

    Our culture craves solid info that we can count on. We don’t want uncertainty. Even so, the more you peel the onion of medicine looking for something solid to hold on to the more nervous you become…if you’re paying attention.

    I’m older now. And I’m going to buy another bottle. Who knows…it may/may not work. I’ll report back with the anecdotal results. Take care.

    • Joe says

      K.Five, for what its worth I’m glad you say it worked for you and I hope it keeps working. I still have my doubts about tribulus but Im always open to the possibility that I am wrong or maybe there is an unknown mechanism afoot. I continue to keep my eyes open for new research so time will tell.

  62. K. Five says

    Thanks, Joe.

    Yeah, the unknown mechanism is the thing for me. I’m wondering if the unknown ‘mechanism’ in my case was adulteration. I started another bottle yesterday. So, far nothing noticeable. I don’t recall what the time frame for efficacy was back then. So, I’ll just play along and let you know how it goes.

    It’s frustrating to know that there are so many unknown variables (weather, soil, drunk plant pickers, etc.) that we will never truly get a grasp on most non-synthetic goods. Even in synthetics, the variation between Brand drugs and between the different generics is astounding.

    I recently heard a talk by a pharmacist on one of my rounds that described how the differences between generics is pronounced. Yet, most docs are dismissive when patients swear that generic A is better/worse than generic B. I guess we don’t know what we don’t know:)

    Take care.

  63. Greg says

    I’m a 40 year old man who just started noticing some T related issues, libido down, less emotional stability, longer recovery time from hard workout, metabolism slowing down as measured at waistline. I tried a supplement that uses 500 mg of Tribulus and it took longer than 2 weeks but after that I definitely noticed the effect. So did my wife.

      • Greg says

        This is what I took:

        http://www.vitaminshoppe.com/store/en/browse/sku_detail.jsp?id=VS-2249#.UUSBAtEVsgE

        It has other ingredients so I’m can’t say for sure the Tribulus was responsible for the effects I saw, but I noticed the effects starting in the third week. This also coincides with some other lifestyle changes, like trying to eliminate factory farmed meat from my diet, switching to natural diet free range meat and a lot of organic locally farmed veggies to eliminate pesticides and chemicals, so there are some overlapping factors that I can’t account for in here.

        Effect 1, and most unmistakably linked to the product, was libido. I was back to wanting my wife every night, and we had slowly become a once a week kind of couple before I started on the product.

        The other effects were possibly psychological just from having more sex or even placebo, but they were:

        Effect 2: working out harder and longer, not sure it was a physical effect or just feeling more aggressive from either T or more sex.

        Effect 3: lost weight quicker, this also could come from the psychological effects causing effect 2.

        Effect 4: recovered quicker from workouts, but maybe I just *thought* i did because I seemed to be overall feeling better.

        So overall my results were positive – although I don’t necessarily have a reason to believe they were definitely higher T, they could have been. Either way, I’m ordering some more, I plan to cycle 4-6 weeks on, 1-2 weeks off for a while and see what happens.

        • Joe says

          Greg, Im included to think what you experienced may have had more to do with the other stuff you did – working out, eating better ect and not tribulus. My instincts also are that the sexual improvements you noticed may have had to do with horny goat weed and arginine and not tribulus. I think diet an exercise may have been the biggest contributor.

          Either way glad something, whatever it was, helped you :)

          • Anonymous says

            Thats certainly possible. I’m going to go off it for a couple of weeks before starting a new course. After that maybe I’ll do a course of just tribulus and see what happens.

  64. Jason says

    I am 35 years old and Ive been taking Tribulus Terrestris for a couple months now. I have noticed a gain in muscle mass and my strength has gone up. My sex drive has not increased, which the product said it would, which is the main reason I purchased the product, I have noticed my drive has been decreasing as I am getting older.

    I take 6 tablets a day which equals 6000 mg a day. If I don’t take the product for a few days, and I return to the gym the weight I can lift drops dramatically. I have had my T levels checked in the past and the doctor said everything was in the normal range (not sure what my numbers were). I go to the doctor again on Tuesday to get tested again. I am going to ask him about this product, and to see if he will prescribe me an injectible testosterone, for other reasons then lifting weights, I’m trying to increase my libido and increase my energy.

    I have read most of your reviews on this product, and I think it will vary from person to person. I think everyone system will react differently. I have a trainer and he has been impressed with my gains. I will keep you posted on my T levels after i get tested again. Thanks for all the research you do and the options to leave our opinions.

  65. praful says

    im 57.used tribulus 750mg/day for two months. neither t level increased nor muscle mass. no side effects.

  66. mark says

    Hi can tribulus cause any vaginal infections trough sex i’m planning to use it my wife is concerned?

    • Joe says

      Roger, and you have proof that tribulus raised your testosterone levels? would love to see the test results

  67. martialartfailures says

    I would think a guy my age at 54, someone who has not worked out regularly in yrs., and started taking trib., would notice a difference very quickly, like in days if he started taking it. So after one capsule of 500mg as recommended did nothing for 2 weeks, I upped it to 2 then to 3 and still nothing.

    An old fart like me whose body is worn down just a little bit more(smile) than a 25 yr olds, should be a prime candidate to benefit. Nada! I personally think its a scam. Yep, I think tribulus is a scam and those who claim they are affected are paid endorsers or have placebo affect. I also admit I then added in Testosterone and dianabol and still tribulus did nothing which meant I was producing more testosterone than a 19 yr old kid.

    Its ok, after they bilk us out of a few hundred million with ridiculous cases studies and questionable doctors testimonials they will pull the old bait and switch. They will bring it back with another “do nothing” supplement saying these 2 have to be combined to get the full effect. Sound familiar?

  68. Heath says

    I’m 43, haven’t worked out In yrs. been married 15 of them. Although my girl says she content with my size, says I’m the (biggest) she’s ever had, there’s always been that question in the back of my mind. How can I naturally go bigger without surgery or BS pills? Is there really something out there that really works or is it all BS?

    • Joe says

      Heath, Im naturally skeptical about most testosterone boosters. I dont see any clinical proof their ingredients raise T levels in people. Im always willing to keep an open mind on this and so I will keep reviewing those that make claims that they work.

  69. Alex says

    hi,i took tribulus rau powder,cheap as a superfood,and tooked 2 grams/day,the recommended maximum dose…in tea..and noticed in one month at gym my arms growth 1 cm at least,my opinion is that if you take it…no matter the brand,you must eat more than before,to have results with tribulus,sorry for my english,eat like crazy with this and you will notice something

  70. joe4liberty says

    Blood tests people, blood tests!!! Joe is right, unless and until someone does a controlled study using no less than 350 participants (more would be better – and screw muscle growth size etc.. since too many factors play into muscle growth), and instead check testosterone (free-testosterone vs. total-testosterone vs. Estradiol), then we will never know whether this stuff effects testosterone hormone levels.

    And let’s not forget about Aromatase and SHBG – no use upping the “T” if it all turns to estrogen…

    I personally have been taking raw tribulus (available from Nutra-Bio in powdered form – MUCH CHEAPER than buying a lot of pills) for about six months now. I just had my levels checked. Total as well as free “T” levels are in the “low-normal” range, but still lower than ideal, and my doctor and I agree that for optimum health I need to raise both.

    My biggest problem however is that my estrogen levels are through the roof (42.0 pg/mL)– I’m damned near a woman! So I am going to begin an herbal anti-aromatase / SHBG program to see if I can correct this. If I can’t get it turned around with herbal supplementation in 90 days, I’ll begin an artificial hormone replacement therapy regimen.

    I only wish that

    #1 I had tested my levels before taking the supplemental tribulus so that I could see a rise or fall in “T” levels,
    and

    #2 I take other supplements such as 50-100 mg of zinc, 2,000 mg Acetyl-L-carnitine, and DHEA, and so there would be no way to know what the tribulus is and is not actually doing.

    Again, the raw powder from Nutra-Bio of the above was cheap, so I figured “what the hell, not like it’s gonna hurt”, but now I wish I had done a controlled test on myself… My doctor actually wants me to keep taking the tribulus as part of the overall herbal cocktail. His thoughts are the same “it’s cheap, and it can’t hurt, and if it can help avoid artificial treatments, it’s worth a try.”

    Anyway, every time I see someone talk about the “results” that they are getting in the gym it makes me cringe since you have no way of knowing if those results are coming from increased “T” levels, or from something else. It takes a lot of different factors to grow muscle, and you can have low-“T” and still grow muscle – I know, I did it.

    I went up 15 lbs of body mass, and dropped body fat from 15% to 9% in a year, and as mentioned, my “T” levels have been low. This is not bad for a 50 year old man who looks like he’s in his 30’s and has the blood of a 20 year old (aside from hormone levels that is).

    So STOP guessing, and get yourselves to your doctor, have your blood drawn and find out what your hormone levels actually are! You should have blood work done every year to track all of your nutrient levels anyway…

  71. Syed says

    Hello Joe,

    I am 24 years old,

    From last three years i am experiencing low libido and not very good erections.I got my T level tested….it was just on a border line of the lower limit…..From some where i got to know about Tribulus terrestris and this is the product offered by himalya pharmaceutical company..Is it Safe???

    • Joe says

      Syed, Ive never heard of that brand but I honestly dont believe tribulus raises testosterone levels. Because I could say is try it for a month and get your T levels tested again. if it changes let me know. Are you overweight? if yes, even a little, losing a few lbs can raise testosterone levels.

  72. David says

    I would like to see a study done on tired middle-aged men who are overweight and undersexed, and suffer from a general lack of motivation. Why does everyone think that rugby players and weight lifters are the ones who need it the most ??

  73. Hatem says

    my T levels is 1.54 ml/ng and im 33 years old my libido is getting down with my wife ? im taking the local Tribulus Terrestris .
    i would like to ask for the suitable dosage for better improvement?

    • Joe says

      Hatem, I have no idea what an effective dosage would be. my best guess is try it for a month and get your T levels tested again. you will know in a month if it raises your T levels.

  74. Ken Kaplan says

    My problem with your data is it all involves young men, most who are athletes. The issue is testosterone is supposed to decline with age. Therefore I will be 66 in two days and the studies should have been done with older males, both with and without training. Thus to me there is a serious flaw in the research.

    I can get it very inexpensive ($3.29 a bottle) for about 750 mg a day. I tried fenugreek and longjack but did not do them very long and did not notice a difference.

    However might try this because its so reasonable. Some formulas are more complete for about $15.

    I like the reply that results are highly individual. With supplements you have to see what works for you.

  75. Barry says

    Hi Joe,
    Im 53 and started taking 2103mg of Tribulus Terrestris and Citrullins Malate for 2 weeks (Nugenix), I have noticed a diff. in libito for sure… it caught me off guard,I wasn’t anticipating it So I know its not a sugar pill effect. Ill let you know about the effect in the gym, If there is any. I think that older users will get the benefits more than younger men.

  76. Jason says

    Hi there, I am 25 yrs old, 6ft 2 and am generally pretty active. I am looking to increase muscle mass and lean up. I have taken US Metabolics’ Tribulus a couple of times and have had some positive results. I came across the product as it was being sold with my pre-workout energy booster Gaspari Superpump on amazon. Gave it a go, took 1-4 tablets a day with a fairly clean diet. Each tablet contained 1000 mg / min. 45% Saponins. I trained in the gym 3-4 times a week and played football (Soccer) 2/3 times a week.

    I noticed an increase in muscle mass generally and my weight increased from 13st to 14st in the space of around 1 month. I found my focus increased, strength and size. My libido also increased and was not aware of this affect before taking the supplement. I did however notice an increase in fat around my lower abdomen

    • Joe says

      Thanks Jason for the feedback and your experiences. when you can, do get your testosterone measured (free and bound testosterone) as this will help your doctor 30 years from now, know what it was like today. this can help future doctors help you when your T is lower.

  77. Kilo says

    Doctor diagnosed low T when I was 47 tried the creams with some results.
    Found Tribulus (Bulgarian) at 50, complete turn around.
    I did not just depend on taking a pill, but used it as part of a exercise program of lifting heavy and cardio.
    I’m 53 now, lost 40 lbs had my T checked, levels are high, sex drive and performance is all my girl can do to keep up. I take 4,000 mg with no Dairy product in my stomach.
    I agree that 18 to a mid 30’s athlete is not who I what to hear about taking Tribulus.

    • Joe says

      Kilo, I appreciate you writing and am glad things have improved but it sounds like you had your testosterone levels checked after you lost 40 pounds. Since weight loss – as well as exercise – is known to raise testosterone levels, we really don’t know if it was tribulus gave you the improvements you are seeing. I’m inclined to think it was the weight loss and exercise program but regardless, I’m glad you are better than you were.

  78. thiago says

    Good morning, I wonder if anyone noticed any waist reduction, reduction of the hip bones after consumption of Tribulus terrestris.

    • Joe says

      Hyde, I’m not preventing anybody from trying tribulus. I’m just showing people the facts that nobody talks about – the current lack of proof that tribulus works – so they can make a more informed decision about where they spend their money. Testimonials from people we dont know is one thing, but I just need better evidence. I’m hoping that people see my words and it spurs better research that is currently out there.

  79. Cal says

    Hi Joe,

    Love the thoroughness and thoughtfulness of your info. here!

    Recently came across aenutrition’s APE product which promises, “22% greater increase in free testosterone in only 12 hours”. It lists tribulus as well as several other ingredients. See ingredients here: http://www.aenutrition.com/images/ape-supplement.jpg

    Their website has no information to back up the claim of increased testosterone. I contacted the company and it asked if there are any clinical trials or double blind studies.

    After several days a representative replied, “The 12 hour claim is taken from an unpublished double blind placebo controlled acute study on the ingredient testosurge, that can not be shared. It should be noted that another company using this ingredient claims 370+% increase in 12 hours which we did not think was accurately representative of the effects. We took extra steps to ensure that no absurdly gaudy claims were made and have never made unfounded claims.

    The other testosterone claims for APE are taken from a published, peer reviewed double blind study on testosurge. http://www.jissn.com/content/6/S1/P12“.

    That response certainly made me suspicious. Making claims in an ad that can’t be substantiated is a red flag. Still the product seems to get pretty good reviews. I’m curious if you have investigated this product or think any of the other listed ingredients could have a positive effect.

    Thx!

    • Joe says

      Cal, Id be a little skeptical based on that reply also. I looked at that testosurge study you referenced. I think this might be an abstract because the citation only lists 1 page for the study (citations usually list all the pages). It’s interesting that the young men in the study appeared to experience an increase in total testosterone but not free testosterone – its the free testosterone that is thought to do stuff.

      Its an interesting study and I’d like to read the entire study to get a better idea, but if it is an abstract, that decreases the power of the study in my view (abstracts do not have to go through the peer review process).

      I also noticed that the testosurge supplement is based on Fenugreek (not tribulus). Fenugreek has been in a lot of supplements Ive looked at.Just search for “Fenugreek” and they will all pop up.

  80. Rodger Dodger says

    Hay Joe:

    I have been watching this feed. I found that I have something to add.
    Blood test: In 2004 I was 51 Years old. My tests came back low in Testosterone. My Doctor prescribed [AndroGel] topical Testosterone. I found myself looking at Women more than usual.

    My sexual performance wasn’t bad, but I remember Better. I weighed about 280LBS @ 6ft tall and am a (self-diagnosed) Diabetic, confirmed by Doctors. I began Taking Resveritrol and began suffering from Hyper-Thyroidism, manifested by a large number of skipped Heart beats. I am not linking the two, this is history.

    From my research on the Liver enzyme [CYP3A4] I found it gets depleted for 72 Hours after eating Grapefruit. Lipitor, Resveritrol and Levitra all seem to use the same enzyme [CYP3A4]. So, If I wanted the Levitra to be effective, I had to Lay-Off it for 72 Hours. This is to show that I am conscious of these interactions.

    I heard stories of AndroGel’s side effects, of shrinking male Testes to Raisins and stopped using it in 2006. With Hyper Thyroid my then Doctor told me GYM activity had to be stopped. Dr. wanted my thyroid tested but I knew this involved Radio-Active injections scans and a lot of money.

    Started taking meds for Thyroid and went back to the GYM. Began “ProArgi9-Plus” for Cardiac health in 2011 and was working out in a GYM. I took the ProArgi9+ for a year and am still taking it to date. ProArgi9+ enhances Nitric Oxide for 24 Hours but has an amount of Resveritrol in it, remember [CYP3A4].

    All of this to say my sexual performance between 2011 and 2012 was at an all time low. Self manipulation yielded me a single Orgasmic contraction & my Testes were like Raisins. I was getting very little Benefit from Levitra which could be Resveritrol interference [CYP3A4].

    Year end of 2012, I began taking Sopharma Tribestin, two tablets in the morning & two tablets in the evening for all of 2013. Result was over the year my Testes grew in size after 6 months at the above dosage which was below Sopharma’s recommendations [I’m not RICH]. Self manipulation yielded 5 to 6 intense contractions with a slightly increased Semen Volume. The longer I went without self manipulation [5 Days] the stronger the Orgasmic experience.

    Now on Testosterone: I could dig up those 2004 Blood Tests and maybe I will, because I am curious myself. My Last Testosterone Blood test yielded 271 in standard measurements. My Doctor said because I’m a Big Guy now, More Muscle and 233Lbs, the Test could be skewed Low. Next Blood test will be for FREE Testosterone. Be mindful that I chose Tribestin because of the LACK of THYROXIN or Thyroxin stimulants in its ingredient. I don’t need more Thyroxin.

    I also cut Tribestin down before latest blood test to 2 tablets per day. I’m also looking for INFO on the Metabolic pathways of Tribesten especially if it uses [CYP3A4]. I’m not getting the best result from Levitra, where I’m up to 10mg. Next I’m stopping the ProArgi9+ for 72hrs and trying the Levitra again. Trying to build to some high Performance Female action soon. I’ll keep you posted.

    • Joe says

      yes keep me posted on the ProArgi9+ /levitra issue. A pharmacist might also be able to give you insights on this as well. The CYAP3A4 pathway is a common enzyme pathway used by a lot of different things. Grapefruit can alter it. They call it the “grapefruit effect” something I’m sure you came across in your research.

  81. Thomas Garza says

    I sell and use Tribulus, 500mg X 2 daily. I also suffer from post multiple spinal fusions and have 7 levels ( cervical and lumbar ) involved. I started using Tribulus over 2 years ago and to be honest, I believe that most folks miss the benefits of herbal supplementation due to not understanding if the “molecule” you wish to capture and maximize, is water or fat soluble.

    I regularly use flaxseed oil and take ALL my herbals with some fat in the stomach. I can attest that at 58 yrs. old, with a re-engineered spine, that I took up cycling over 2 years ago and ride 23 miles and 42 miles per ride. I can’t speak to elevated testosterone but I can speak to recovery issues as I have NO down time after my rides as my metabolism remain elevated well beyond 8 hrs, post ride.

    The increased “nut size” may simply be a related vascular issue being misinterpreted as ” mo tee “, yes ? The variations in outcomes are normal as with any over the counter supplement because there are few, if any, “controls” in a “public perception” interview.

    However, I would suspect that guys under 32 yr should not be needing extra Tee and if there is little or no appreciable reaction to tribulus therapy, it should NOT be read as a “fail”, but rather, “if the wheel ain’t broke, don’t fix it” result.

    The biggest problem I have with selling this supplement are two issues that are EXTREMELY subjective, 1) the power of placebo ( strong positive outcomes reported more often by those who BELIEVE it wholistic lifestyles ) and 2) big nuts and increased sex drive can have multiple causation.

    Finally, I continue to take it as I cannot deny it’s impact on my post ride recovery. My assessment is that there is a good vascular component being misread as ” mo tee”. Regardless, I notice enough performance increase to continue taking this supplement.

  82. supercarrot says

    Just wanted to say, I have read and thoroughly enjoyed this thread!

    I’m a 39 year male. I have come to the conclusion that I have had low test. A few years ago, I got it tested and the doctor said it was normal, but from my end I feel as though I am experiencing many of the symptoms of a lower than desired testosterone level.

    I started training at the VERY beginning of 2013 after 15 years or so with NO exercise and a very sedentary lifestyle. I was obese, being 6’1″. At the time I was (I’m from England – we use kg) 266. I started working out with EVERYTHING, cardio, weights you name it.

    In the end I actually settled for a consistent routine. I’ve lost a lot of fat. Now down to 224lb and below, it varies.

    But had put on a lot of muscle, but I was frustrated by the slowwweneeess of the gains. The weight felt bad heavy, when I was younger it felt good heavy.

    I was looking for a natural testosterone booster, I tried USM Tribulus. The results shocked me. I grew muscle mass. I was also using ZMA from a company called ON as well on training nights.

    The thing that hit me also was my mood changed, I felt like I had a little more fire in my belly, not quite as fed up and I got hornier also, at times, this was quite a strain.

    I decided to stop taking them for a week. I noticed that my mood went back to the normal that it had been before. I found that strange, it took about a week.

    I decided to start taking them again, about two days ago, I’ve upped my dose from 2 pills per day to 3 pills per day. Each pill contains 1000mg. The effect has kicked in already. I’m keeping an eye on fat loss/accumulation as well as muscle growth.

    I completely understand the frustration over the studies, as an older man, I kept reading down to see if there was better information done with people of a closer age group who are not rats…..

    But at the moment, the effect on me is great. No idea why, which is scary.

    Once again, thanks for the thread – really useful, really enjoyed it.

      • supercarrot says

        Cheers, but the question really is why does it appear to be working for some and not for others?

        It is for this reason that I made a point of stating which companies I’m using, just in case this is a factor.

        • Joe says

          Super, this is hard to say. My first thought was that as you lost weight, that this may have raised your testosterone levels. Weight loss will do this. But if I understood you correct, you said that things didn’t get better until you took the supplements. Placebo effect would be the easy answer but without any research on the combination of supplements -and brands -you are using, I dont know if that’s correct either.

          I wish I had a good answer for you. I’ll just be glad you are doing well with that combination and if anyone else tries it, I hope they will share their experiences so we can compare things.

  83. A says

    Apologies for lack of any lab data…

    I started taking a supplement with trib in it back in 2011 (at 41yo) and noticed similar to other comments here. I am a healthcare practitioner (not in the area of supplements). A practice where I worked sold this particular line of ‘practitioner only’ supplements. After a social conversation about lacking energy and feeling worn out, another practitioner gave me the supps saying “try these they might pick you up”…

    I’m saying this to communicate that I really had no idea what to expect. The supps stated they ‘may help with male sexual function’ etc. No claims of test increases etc.

    The before and after results were similar to others.
    Waking up with ‘diamond cutter’ morning erections, where previously there was none.

    Increase in libido – actually I felt like I was 20yo again.
    Sexual performance increase (erection strength, duration, volume of ejaculate number of times).
    In fact ejaculate volume was a source of amusement/shock for quiet a few girls.

    I was resistance training consistently both before and after starting the supplements. I must say that after being on the supps for 3 months there was a golden time for my training, with a lot of peaks in strength and lean muscle gain.

    The energy levels did improve. But I was shocked at the other sexual performance results. Feedback to the original practitioner caused a laugh and… “Yeah, that can happen”.

    Main points of my feedback:
    The practitioner told me about the effects after the fact, stating it can be hit and miss.
    The supplement had other co-factors etc added that can also assist if deficient.
    Hard to directly link but I can associate them with the best training cycles of my life.

    4 years later I still cycle this product occasionally during heavy training cycles and will hit it for a couple of weeks when the sexual aspect of a relationship needs a kick. Have recommended it to others and, again, it has been hit and miss. some good results, some so-so and others noticed nothing.

    This was the product:
    metagenics.com.au/products/tribulus-synergy-60-tablets

    • Joe says

      A, thanks for writing. I looked up the Metagenics tribulus synergy supplement on Amazon. While I could not see the entire ingredients label I was able to see that it contains more than tribulus. That means that whatever effects you said occured, cant be attributed to tribulus alone. It looked like the product also had Ashwagandha which has been in a few product Ive looked at before. Here is a list of all of them.

      • Scott says

        Have you heard about any scams on Amazon, people sell fake stuff through there, putting something else in the bottles. This makes me skeptical of going through Amazon. Have you or anyone else heard this?

        • Joe says

          Scott I’ve never heard of fake stuff being sold on amazon. Distributors of several products I’ve looked at have made this claim but show me no proof. While I’m sure there are knock off brands out there for most popular things, since I hear it so much, I wonder if it is talking points for the most part.

  84. whoiswho says

    This will be quite a story, but read it please :)
    So:
    I`m originally from an eastern european country not too far from Bulgaria, but i live in Germany. Before trying tribulus, i`ve heard and read that only bulgarian grown tribulus has an actual effect (soviet and eastern european athletes and researchers used bulgarian tribulus only), but i didn`t take that serious, since by my logic was tribulus is tribulus, finish. So i tried various pretty expensive products from german, american and polish companies. The price ranged from 15 – 25€ for like 60 pills with 600 – 900mg extract (the polish one had even 1200mg). The american company (it`s the product on the picture above) even claims that their tribulus is from bulgaria, but the effect fo all three of them was absolutely zero.

    I then decided to get a product directly from Bulgaria. The obvious choice would be Tribestan by Sopharma, because this is the product that was actually used by eastern european athletes as well as for research back in communist times, but that one was too expensive after all the disappointment before (like 25€ for 60 tablets with 250mg). So i searched bulgarian pharmacy sites (i`m a russian speaker so this was no problem) for alternatives and finally found one. .The Price directly from the company was 6€ per can (60 pills, 250mg each) which means it was DIRT-CHEAP in comparison, and contrary to my expectations that stuff did absolutely everything that tribulus is supposed to do.

    2 – 3 pills a day (i wasn`t taking anything other than these at that time) gave me the following effects:

    – skyrocketed libido and sperm production + constant spantaneous boners. I was feeling like a 15 years old teenager.

    – energy level and endurance was much higher than usual.

    – I was sweating like a bull when working out and feeling great afterwards. It gave me a general good feeling, i don`t even know how to describe it.

    – I can`t tell with guarantee that i raised my testosterone since i did no test, but going by the feeling after taking it for a few days, it probably did. Like i said, i was feeling like a teenager.

    You can believe it or not, but the difference between the bulgarian stuff and the chinese/indian tribulus extracts (along with fillers and other bullshit) that are used by all the common western supplement companies is like day and night.

    The smell and taste alone is enough to tell that the bulgarian ones are completly different. I once opened one pill to compare the look, smell and taste of the extract with 2 of the useless products i bought before, and again, it`s like day and night. The Bulgarian extract is dark brown, it is almost black, and the smell is really strong. The taste is so extremly bitter that you won`t be able to keep it in your mouth longer than a few seconds because it hurts. It is also extremly hygroscopic and since the bulgarian one doesn`t have any fillers in it, it had already drawn moisture and was a hard mass instead of a powder.
    Now first one that i compared it with was a dry powder (it had fillers in it) and the extract was much brighter, kinda greyish-brown with a much weaker and different smell. The taste was by far not as bitter as the bulgarian one (tribulus is supossed to be extremly bitter).

    The second one was also a powder which was not as dry as the other one, but still dry enough to tell that they had fillers in it. The colour was brown, but still lighter than in the bulgarian one and the smell and taste was again much weaker. As i said before, they were both completly useless, just trash.

    If you now ask how the same plant can have different characteristics and effects (or no effect at all) think about apples for example: There are hundreds of sorts, and every each is different from the other when it comes to the content of sugar, vitamines etc. Hemp is also a great example. You won`t get any effect from smoking industrial hemp, and even the ones that are used for smoking all have huge differences in the amounts of the working ingredient (THC).

    It all depends on the conditions in which these plants are grown, the soil, the climate, the air and many many other things.

    So what i want to tell you is: If you want tribulus that actually works, get it DIRECTLY from Bulgaria.

    Bulgarian tribulus is grown in the specific climatic conditions of Bulgaria (this is probably why it actually works) instead of industrial chinese greenhouses, and this is also exactly the reason you`ll find it in Bulgarian products ONLY. They just don`t have the capacity to provide the whole world with their product, since it`s naturally grown.

    Also, don`t believe all the bullshit statements about astronomic amounts of like 90% saponines/protodioscine and all the other nonsense which the supplement companies use for selling their crap. Serious bulgarian brands (not speaking about stuff like “Trybest” which seems dubious to me) have always the same writing on their products, which is: 40 – 45% FUROSTANOL Saponines. You won`t find anything about protodioscine etc and no claims of 90% saponine content, which is nothing more than a scam.

    And at last a short look on the leaflet of the Sopharma product. Sopharma is an actual pharmaceutical company.

    Product is used for:
    – Lack of libido and infertility in men and women
    – climacteric syndrome in women
    – dyslipoproteinemia

    Contraindications:

    – heavy heart and kidney disease
    – prostate adenoma
    – Children under 16 years
    – pregnancy and lactation

    Interactions/precautions
    – Tribulus and medications for ovulation stimulation increase each others effect
    – could increase effects of diuretics
    – could increase the effects of blood-pressure lowering medications

    • Joe says

      whoiswho, interesting stuff. I took a look at this after reading your comment. Since Sopharma is a pharmaceutical company figured they had a website. I did see “Sopharma.com” listed in google so that’s good.

      I then looked up sopharma.com in Whois.com, a website that sometimes can give useful info about websites. Whois.com said that the website name, sopharma.com, was registered in 1999 by someone named VASSIL LOUTCHEV of the BULGARIAN PHARMACEUTICAL GROUP LTD. Here’s the the thing. The address of the Bulgarian Pharmaceutical group is Las Vegas, Nevada! Why isn’t the Bulgarian Pharmaceutical group in Bulgaria?

      Here is the whois.com file for the company http://www.whois.com/whois/sopharma.com

      For those who want to check it out, here is Tribestan on Amazon.

      • whoiswho says

        Hi,

        never heard of Sopharma.com. Maybe they tried to establish themselves on the US-market with that website, or maybe it`s a fake at all, i don`t really know. It doesn`t look quite up to date. Anyway, The original website is http://www.Sopharma.bg
        http://www.whois.com/whois/sopharma.bg

        I mentioned their product just as an example since it`s the most famous in eastern europe, but like i said, i bought another one from Bulgaria which was much cheaper. It was this one: http://apteka.framar.bg/30025329/%D1%82%D1%80%D0%B8%D0%B1%D1%83%D0%BB%D1%83%D1%81-%D0%BA%D0%B0%D0%BF%D1%81-250-%D0%BC%D0%B3-60-%D0%BF%D0%BB%D0%B0%D0%BD%D1%82%D0%B5%D0%BA%D1%81%D1%82%D1%80%D0%B0%D0%BA%D1%82

        The producers had some cheap website which seems to be not more avaible, so i contacted them directly and they agreed to send it to germany. Like i said before, it was satisfying and the price was awesome.
        I`ve also tried the one from Sopharma later (got it from Moldova while visiting my grandmother) and since it has the same effect but is much more expensive, especially when you have to buy it from Germany or generally western europe, i didn`t bother to buy it again.
        I think all the products from Bulgaria use the same extract so it doesn`t really matter which one to buy.

        I`ve also found some interesting information about Tribulus here:
        http://examine.com/supplements/Tribulus+terrestris/#summary1-2

        Under “Variability” for example it says that the eastern european and western asian (mainly Bulgarian, Macedonian and Turkish) species have more than double the amount of Protodioscin compared to the Indian/Chinese ones.
        It also says that “the Bulgarian Tribulus is the only extract to possess sulphated spirostanol and furostanol saponins[18] and chinese tribulus seems to be the only compound with cisA/B ring junctures in their saponins”

        Please don`t ask me what that means, i don`t have a clue…

        The “Interactions with hormones” and “Interactions with sexuality” part is also an interesting read. It seems to interact somehow with the androgenic receptors in the brain (again the bulgarian tribulus) but there is no evidence that is raises testosterone or other hormones in the body. But then again “In persons with low sperm count given 6g of tribulus root daily for two months (where almost half of participants reported erectile problems) there was significant improvements in the loss of erection (6.03%), rigidity (9.41%), premature ejaculation (6.12%), and lack of orgasm (9.76%)”.

        It`s all very confusing, but i can only speak about myself. The sexual effects and the effects on my energy level were pretty distinctive while taking it and did go away as soon as i stopped taking them. Since i didn`t take anything other with the tribulus and didn`t change anything in my lifestyle while taking them, the effect was clearly coming from the tribulus. I didn`t notice any significant changes in muscle mass/building though and i don`t really believe that it has an anabolic effect.

        • Joe says

          WhoisWho, well now, that is a different company then! I guess what threw me off is that Tribestan is mentioned on the “.com” sopharma website. I dont know if they are the same company or not and I agree it all can be very confusing. If it helps you I’m really happy. I do wish there was better research on tribulus (including the Tribestan version).

          I do think men should get their testosterone levels checked anyway before starting any tribulus supplement. this will at least give them a baseline idea of what their T levels are and, I hope, open up a conversation with their doctor because ED is not just about testosterone levels. It can be an early sign of heart disease.

  85. says

    The common mistake people (and researchers) make with supplements like this is that they CANNOT be prescribed unversally. Gokshura is mostly used in the Ayuvedic formulary and the principles of ayurvedic pharmocology do not support a one-size-fits-all approach. Herbals are not only prescribed for the presenting symptoms but for the patient’s unique physiology. Consequently, even identical twins presenting with the same symptoms–let’s say a flu–might be given different medicines.

  86. Frank Reyna says

    I have tried Bulgarian Tribulus Terrestris for about 1 week. I have noticed some increase in blood flow increasing erections also noticed a drop in blood pressure and blood sugar levels. I am a diabetic with high blood pressure My personal experience with this herbal pill has been somewhat beneficial.

  87. steve payne says

    I have been using Tribulus and I have to say I feel amazing I going to try it for 6 weeks and see what happen. I had the best work out in a long time last night

  88. says

    Hi all!

    I am a 43 years old Bulgarian and I have never used Tribulus in my life. Recently I have experienced some problems with my libido and testosterone levels in general (my muscles cannot recover well after a workout). To go to a doctor in my city is equal to go ask a gypsy “healer” for a health advice. So, I have decided to try Bulgarian Tribulus on my own. I have checked the web, especially Bulgarian MMA and fitness communities (the largest consumers of all kind of supplements) and it seems there is a local “winner” among all products. It is called VemoHerb Bulgarian Tribulus (I have ordered it already); here is a link to the product on the manufacturer’s website: http://vemoherb.com/shop/index.php/vemoherb-bulgarian-tribulus.html (it is not an affiliate link and I have nothing do with these guys). It claims to offer 60% saponins of furostanol type and many people who use it say it is working more than well.

    As for Sopharma, it is the local equivalent of a typical pharmaceutical “giant”, but in our case, it is more former socialist mafia type of a “corporation”, since it was beyond competition since the yearly 50-ties of the last century. You can read some details about it here in case you find it interesting: http://www.sopharma.us/About-Sopharma/About-Sopharma/history-of-sopharma.html. Their product Tribestan is widely recognized on the Balkans (I cannot say anything about Europe and the rest of the world, although I have found with a click or two this info: http://www.bodybuilding.com/store/soph/trib.html). I personally don’t like monopolists.

    I intend to share how this product has affected me after a month or more (hope to survive the treatment).

    • Joe says

      Meleager, I hope it helps you. I went to the website of the product you mentioned. They listed this address for the company that makes the bulgarian tribulus product you ordered: 13 Shumen str., 1309 Sofia, Bulgaria. If you google that address you will see what the company looks like. It might be worth a look.

      • says

        Thanks. Actually I am not quite sure the exact address is shown on that poor picture, but you are right – what is shown looks scary. But on the other hand, the whole country has been looking scary for the last 20+ years and I am pretty sure I have made more damage to my health by simply buying and consuming the most common food products on our market (trying to get rid of it already – not an easy task though).

        Anyway, the company claims these are their production facilities: http://www.vemo-vsv.com/ and if so, it looks quite alright to me. I intend to try their product and in case I notice some drastic change in my heart rhythm or anything of the sort, I will simply stop taking it.

  89. Justin says

    You have to carfare where you get these supplements at, it may say it on the bottle but it may not be the real deal. tribulus is working for me, noticing a huge increase in strength, etc. recommended dose of 1mg 3 times daily

    • Joe says

      Justin, Thanks for the feedback. All I can say is I used what others said worked for them. Happy its working for you.

    • Joe says

      Le bon, thanks for bringing this to my attention. I’ve updated my review and included the study. It’s interesting. The women noted that they had better sex lives after taking tribulus (7.5 mg per day) compared to women who took a placebo. While the researchers did not measure hormone levels, I still found it interesting. I noticed the researchers appeared to take pains (rightly so) in making sure they were getting the real deal tribululs. Might differences in study outcomes be due to lack of quality of tribulus? I do not know. Id like to see this study confirmed by another study and compare the survey results to changes in hormone levels.

  90. Mario says

    There are a number of supplements that promise results but don’t deliver. From my personal experience, no testosterone booster will be as effective unless it is also paired with a proper diet plan and a good workout protocol. Both of these will additionally be key to success.

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