There's a certain herb used in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) that's turning heads for its peculiar name. Horny goat weed, also known by its other names as epimedium, Barrenwort or yin yang huo, has been known to boot sexual health and performance, as well as help in the treatment of bone and kidney diseases.

One of the most popular stories about where it gets is name is from a legend that a herder noticed his goats who consumed the plant became more excited around animals of the opposite sex.

There has not been enough research, nor sufficient data available to prove the medicinal effects of horny goat weed, but years of usage supported by anecdotes tell us many of its uses and potential benefits. It’s mostly popular for addressing erectile dysfunction, thanks to the help of its main active ingredient, icariin.

How It Works

Icariin is from the extract of the Epimedium plant. This controls the PDE5, which blocks the dilation of the arteries in the penis. As a result, the blood can flow to the arteries and the nether regions and create an erection. Viagra works the same way. Did you know that an estimated 20 million men aged 40 to 70 years old in the United States are said to be affected by erectile dysfunction?

Before you completely close the door on this herb and think you’re not getting anything from it, you should know that it doesn’t just enhance the male sexual health, but it also works for women who are going through menopause, and anyone who suffers from any bone or kidney disease.

Female Sexual Health

Horny goat weed works much the same for women as it does for men by increasing blood circulation to the genital tissues. It also balances the estrogen and estradiol levels in postmenopausal women. Since icariin is a prenylflavonoid compound, it also contains phytoestrogen, which can help aid women with low libido.

Bone Health

The University of Tokyo’s chemistry and biotechnology department said that horny goat weed is capable of restoring bone density due to the presence of an osteogenic compound in icariin. Several tests conducted on mice and rats revealed that icariin promoted bone formation within four to six weeks. The chemical also decreases the risk of bone resorption and promotes microstructure in the bones.

Taking horny goat weed extract for 24 months also showed a significant decrease in bone loss in the spine and hips of postmenopausal women, according to a study published by the National Institutes of Health.

Muscle Strength

The Journal of Sexual Medicine said icariin possibly has neurotrophic effects, which means it can help the body release proteins that can allow the cells to grow quicker and help repair broken or depleted tissue. For body builders, icariin also serves as one of the active ingredients in supplements they take since it also helps the body recover after a workout and improves a person’s athletic performance.

Brain Performance

The plant doesn’t just improve blood circulation to the body’s lower region. In fact, icariin spreads throughout the body when taken, which explains why it can help with muscle strength and bone density as well. It also improves the blood circulation to the brain and help your mental functions like memory retention, help treat sleep deprivation, and relieve neural cell fatigue.

Dosage

Developing research recommends an intake of 180 to 900 milligrams daily for postmenopausal women and 900 to 1,500 milligrams for men. Consult your doctor about taking these supplements as it may interfere with any current medications. Try consulting a herbal specialist practitioner.

 


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