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Tribulus terrestris

Tribulus terrestris               Common name: Puncture vine, Devil’s thorn

Family: Zygophyllaceae

Part used: Aerial & Fruit

Constituents: Steroidal saponins & glycosides (diosgenin, tribulosin, cistocardin), amides, and alkaloids

Actions: Diuretic, astringent, stomachic, lithotropic, alterative, mild laxative, carminative, aphrodisiac, abortifacient, galactagogue

Medical uses: Is indicated in testosterone and estrogen imbalances, and has been used as an aphrodisiac in impotence and erectile dysfunction. Aid inflammatory processes of the genitourinary tract and dysuria. Has a possible use in angina pectoris for those with coronary heart disease. Has historical use in the treatment of disorders such as arthritis, diseases of the serious fluid, and eczema. In Ayurvedic medicine it is used to treat hypertension.  In postmenstrual women may be useful when treating symptoms related to reduced estrogen production.

Pharmacology:

  • Steroidal saponins appear to increase FSH in women which then increase levels of estradiol. It is thought that the saponins are weakly stimulating the receptors in the hypothalamus.

Pharmacy: Dried fruit: 1/2-1g TID. Decoction of crushed berries: 1/2 tsp/cup, simmer 15 min, TID. Liposterol extract (LESP): ~160ml/2 caps QD. Tincture: (1:2, 45%), 1-2 ml TID. Note: May take 4-6 weeks to see effects.

Contraindications: Pregnancy.

Interactions: None reported.

Toxicity: Reports of livestock (sheep) experiencing toxic reactions after consuming.

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