Does Horny Goat Weed Work? What The Science Says in 2018

Horny Goat Weed Efficacy: What The Science Says in 2018

Horny goat weed has been traditionally used for enhancing libido and sexual health since time immemorial in Asian countries.

It has various botanical names such as Epimedium grandiflorum, Epimedium pubescens, Epimedium brevicornum, Epimedium koreanum, and Epimedium sagittatum. In traditional Chinese medicine, the leaves of these Epimedium species have been used for preparation of the herb known as yin yang huo. The herb has been utilized in the treatment of conditions such as osteoporosis, hay fever, atherosclerosis, erectile dysfunction, and nerve pain fatigue.

Horny goat weed herb is a well-known aphrodisiac used a testosterone booster. The herb has been utilized as an aphrodisiac product in both males and females, and beneficial at a moderate dosage for bone health.

Though human research data supporting the use of horny goat weed is insufficient, there is some subject evidence of its use in the treatment of certain medical conditions.

Active Ingredients of Horny Goat Weed Supplement

Icariin is the active ingredient of horny goat weed. It is a flavonol glycoside with the ability to improve the synthesis of Nitric Oxide in the penis. Icariin, as well as its derivatives, inhibits PDE-5 in cavernosal smooth muscle.

It has been considered to possess anti-osteoporotic, anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective properties. With its derivatives, they elicit positive neurotrophic effects on nitrergic nerves along with enhancement of smooth muscle proliferation. They also reduce advanced glycation end product formation, and copycat endogenous androgens [56-64].

Horny goat weed supplement is 100% natural and safe with a stability of two years from the date of manufacture. The water extraction method produces a balanced extract with other fifteen active compounds, such as quercetin, luteolin, epimedium and so forth.  People with medical conditions, nursing or pregnant women should consult a physician before using horny goat weed product.

One capsule is to be taken once daily along with meals. Quality may vary between different products and suppliers, but I recommend SlowfoodNation.org, which offers great quality and has the best price for horny goat weed. (Disclaimer: I’ve only ordered from 5 other vendors, so I may not have found the absolute best price. DYOR.)

How it Works

Flavonoids in horny goat weed have been demonstrated to possess estrogen-inhibitory properties. The capacity of horny goat weed to be used traditionally for the treatment of sexual problems and its clinical efficacy for enhancing of sex drive in patients with kidney failure have been attributed to its estrogen-inhibitory properties.

A study that assessed rats with injured nerves revealed that the active ingredient of horny goat weed (icariin) showed positive effects in the treatment of erectile dysfunction (ED) originated from nerve injury.

Almost 20 million men in the USA, especially from 40-70 years of age, are affected by ED. In vitro studies of horny goat weed have shown that it has neuroprotectant properties through the inhibition of pro-oxidant and pro-inflammatory marker in reaction to stress.

To validate the traditional treatment of using horny goat weed for erectile problem, rats treated with low-dose icariin showed an enhancement in penile nitric oxide synthase and smooth muscle content.

Studies have also revealed that icariin is more efficacious than Genistein in the prevention of osteoporosis because it has higher osteogenic (bone-forming) effect than Genistein.

Another study carried out in post-menopausal women using together icariin, and soy isoflavones a day for two years revealed an excellent attenuation of bone mineral density loss. Icariin derivatives, such as icaritin and desmethylicarin have been demonstrated in vitro have estrogenic characteristics useful in the treatment of breast cancer cells.

Moreover, a study that used 200mg/kg of icariin for seven days revealed that in castrated rat, icariin raised testosterone level to nearly thrice the control rats. Icariin is a potent pro-erectile agent and a potent PDE-5 inhibitor.

At lower doses (1-5mg/kg), it improves tissue expression of neuronal nitric oxide synthase together with PDE-5 inhibition. Icarin enhances nitric oxide signaling through the increase in expression of NOS enzymes with the synergistic action of PDE-5 inhibition. In vitro studies have also associated icariin with the capacity to increase neurite growth of pelvis ganglia.

Safety and Efficacy

Though icariin has been demonstrated to be effective in treating erectile in aged people, diabetic and castrated animal models, it has not been evaluated in randomized clinical trials. No lasting toxicology studies have been carried out on icariin.

However, its highest dosage that was utilized in rats (200mg/kg body weight) for seven days indicated no signs of clinical toxicity.

Pharmacokinetics

Icariin possesses low oral bioavailability. It is poorly absorbed with a very short plasma half-life. It is because of these unfavorable pharmacokinetics profiles that liposome encapsulated preparations of icariin are formulated.

The critical metabolic pathway of icariin seems to be through ejection with the bile salts or biliary excretion. A study shows that administering icariin with P-Glycoprotein inhibitors can eliminate icariin.

Recommended dosage

Studies in animal models show that testosterone boosting effects is at a dosage of 200mg/kg of a 40% extract (80mg/kg Icariin). Therefore, based on conversions the estimated human dose is: 900mg icariin for a person weighing 150lb, 1,200mg icariin for 200lb, and 1,500mg icariin for 250lb.

Other studies that utilized a lower dosage of icariin (1-10mg/kg) put their estimated human dose has: 11-110mg icariin for a person weighing 150lb, 15-150mg icariin for 200lb, and 18-180mg Icariin for 250lb. 60mg icariin daily was recommended in human studies on postmenopausal women and bone health.

Side effects

Horny goat weed is utilized in traditional Chinese medicine in combination with yin tonic herbs for prolonged treatment of sexual health.

When used in this mix, it is believed that it is associated with side effects as fever, irritability or hot symptoms. However, in animal studies, its prolonged usage is related to a decrease in thyroid activity.

Conclusion

In recent times, the use of herbal supplements for sexual arousal and improvement of erectile problems is on the increase. It could be very frustrating when someone is expressing erectile dysfunction.

It is crystal clear that poor sexual performance, weak libido or erectile dysfunction is a sensitive topic. Horny goat weed supplement is a real choice for a person looking for instant and long-term solutions for erectile dysfunction.

Horny goat weed supplements are presented as 100% safe, pure and natural products with high-standard of purity level for enhancement of libido for men and women. It is safe because there is no known side effect.

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