bark extract benefit and side effects, use for sexual and erectile enhancement, by Ray Sahelian, M.D., author of
Natural Sex Boosters, a comprehensive guide to natural supplements that enhance
male and female performance and pleasure.
Does it enhance male and female sexuality? Can this herb be combined with other aphrodisiac herbs such as muira puama, maca, and others for a male and female?
March 28, 2014
Catuaba is a medium-sized tree
the Amazon forest in the northern part of Brazil. In Brazilian herbal medicine,
catuaba bark is considered a
central nervous system stimulant with aphrodisiac properties and a bark decoction is used
for nervousness, poor memory, and sexual weakness. Apparently the Topi Indians
have known about the sex-enhancing properties for many centuries,
perhaps combining it with muira puama and other herbal aphrodisiacs.
The scientific name is Erythroxylum catuaba), while other common names are Chuchuhuasha, Tatuaba, Pau de Reposta, and Caramuru. I have also found research studies done with Erythroxylum vacciniifolium, Trichilia catigua, and Anemopaegma mirandum. I am not certain whether they are referring to the same plant.
Catuaba herb is mostly used in the United States in formulas promoted for male enhancement and female sexual dysfunction treatment. I, personally, find catuaba to be helpful for erectile function but is works better combined with other herbal aphrodisiacs. It works much better when combined with muira puama and other sexual enhancers. I have created an effective formula called Passion Rx that combines many of these plant extracts.
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Indigenous tribes of the Amazon Rainforest and city dwellers in Brazil have used catuaba bark for generations as a natural herbal remedy for libido enhancement. Catuaba and Muira Puama are the most famous of all Brazilian aphrodisiac plants.
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Suggested Use: As a dietary supplement, take one capsule a few days a week or as recommended by a health care provider. As with most herbs, I recommend taking breaks from use, for instance one or two weeks on, one or two weeks off.
A unique sexual enhancing product
Dr. Sahelian and his research staff have tested various doses and extracts of dozens of herbs from a number or raw material suppliers to determine the ideal dosage and combination for optimal aphrodisiac properties with the fewest side effects. After years of trial and error, a proprietary blend with more than a dozen herbal extracts from the best raw material suppliers has been created which works within days. Some of the potent herbal extracts in this natural male and female sexual enhancer include withania somnifera, Catuaba extract, Muira puama, Cnidium, Horny goat weed herb, Maca herb, Passion flower, Tribulus, and Tongkat Ali (Eurygold and LJ100), Tribulus and Yohimbe.
Passion Rx enhances:
Libido and sexual thoughts
Orgasms and climaxes
Energy and stamina
In recent years science has made breakthroughs in the understanding of sexual dysfunction. Now, renowned physician and herbal expert Dr. Ray Sahelian, M.D., author of Natural Sex Boosters, has discovered a combination of exotic herbs from the Amazon jungle, India, China, Malaysia, and Africa, that support healthy desire and performance, as well as to simply enhance sexual pleasure.
What the research says about catuaba bark, review of studies
Impotence or erectile dysfunction
As of March 2014, I could not find human research regarding the benefit of catuaba bark for male or female sexual dysfunction. I have personally tried the capsules and they do have a mild to moderate effect on erectile enhancement after a couple of days. In Brazil they are used for impotence or erectile dysfunction treatment.
Inhibition of platelet phospholipase A2 activity by catuaba extract suggests antiinflammatory properties.
Phytother Res. 2004.
Our present data are part of a wide explorative investigation on the effects of Trichilia catigua, which found that phospholipase A2 activity was totally inhibited by catuaba, suggesting that this natural substance may have antiinflammatory properties.
Back in 1992, researchers in Japan found catuaba bark extract (species Erythroxylum catuaba) to have potential antibacterial and anti-HIV activity. The herb, when given to mice, protected them from E. Coli and staph infections. It was also able to prevent the HIV virus from attaching to cells. In addition, catuaba prevented the death of white blood cells exposed to the HIV virus. Of course, more studies are needed before catuaba bark can be recommended for use by patients infected with the HIV virus.
Effects of catuaba extracts on microbial and HIV infection.
Horiuchi Itaro & Co., Tokyo, Japan. In Vivo. 1992.
Pretreatment of mice with hot water and alkaline extracts of Catuaba casca (Erythroxylum catuaba) effectively protected them from lethal infection of Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus. Catuaba significantly inhibited both the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-induced cytopathic effect.
What's in catuaba bark?
Substances found in this plant include alkaloids (catuabine A, B, and C), tannins, aromatic oils and fatty resins, phytosterols, cyclolignans, and cinchonains.
How does catuaba bark work?
The mechanism of action regarding the bark's aphrodisiac properties is currently not well understood. I am not sure if it influences nitric oxide levels or has an influence on testosterone.
Catuaba herb has been traditionally used by natives in the Amazon in combination with muira puama for sexual enhancement and erection enhancement.
Which of the two Amazonian sex herbs do you like more, catuaba or muira puama?
I like them both for different reasons. Muira puama has a nice mood-lifting effect along with increased libido which are quite pleasant, and catuaba has a more direct effect on erectile function. I actually like the combination.
Catuaba side effects,
safety, danger, risk
There are no known side effects with catuaba reported in the medical literature as of 2014. However the use of catuaba supplements in North America is relatively new since for centuries it has been used predominantly by Amazon natives. Little is known about the safety of catuaba supplement use when taken daily for weeks or months. High doses could cause insomnia.
I have not come across research that clarifies the effects of catuaba bark extract on the fetus in humans nor rodents, therefore it would be best that if you are pregnant you not take catuaba supplements until studies are done.
What about interactions?
So little is known about this plant product that it is difficult to say how it interacts with other herbs. However, we do know that it is often used safely with muira puama by natives in northern Brazil.
Can I expect any side effects from taking the
combination of catuaba and muira puama, one pill each a day? Would you take one
week on one week off or how would you suggest?
When combing supplements female or male enhancement herbs, it is a good idea to learn how each one works by itself and to use lower dosages. Each person is different and therefore no specific dosages or schedules can be eaily recommended.
Can catuaba be
combined with other herbs such as yohimbe or tribulus?
I can only speak from my personal and professional experience. Thus far I have combined it with a dozen other herbs and have not found any problems with the combinations when low dosages are used.
Does catuaba bark supplement interfere with medications?
This is a difficult question to answer since there are thousands of medicines and each one is unique in its action. As a general rule, catuaba bark, at least in low doses, should not have a major effect when combined with medicines, but I wish to emphasize that this is a general statement.
Reports from patients, experiences, testimonials
About half of patients to whom I have recommended catuaba report a positive response. Most of the positive responses mention a slightly enhanced ability to maintain erections. Dennis, 47, says, “I do find catuaba helps me have better erections after several days of use, and a friend told me to combine it with muira puama. The combination seems to be more effective. I had previously noticed that muira puama enhanced my libido, and since the catuaba helps with my erections, it seems logical to combine them.”
Roseanne, 38, had difficulty with being aroused during to raising two children, ages 4 and 6. "I took 2 capsules a day for 2 days then cut down to one. After 3 days I found myself in a more aroused state than I remember for several months before. Catuaba herb does work!"
Catuaba dosage and availability
This herb has been historically consumed by Amazonian natives as a tea made from the bark. Indigenous Brazilians claim that after drinking one to three cups of catuaba tea steadily over a period of a few days or weeks, the first effects that occur are usually erotic dreams, and then increased sexual desire. Claims have been made that an alcohol tincture extract of catuaba bark contains more of the active ingredients and provides better results, although I have not come across such research.
Catuaba capsules are sold consisting of a range from 500 to 1,000 mg. The recommended dose would be 0.5 to 1.5 grams per day of the regular full spectrum herb powder. One full dropper of the alcohol tincture can be taken twice a day with breakfast and lunch. Catuaba is also found in two-ounce liquid bottles; one milliliter provides about 500 mg. There are also different extract potencies. A Google search reveals that it is available in many formulas, often combined with other herbs. There are probably hundreds of libido products marketed over the counter that contain catuaba, and it is quite likely that many of them are effective while others provide disappointing results. We have no indication that this herb has addictive potential.
Which is better to take, catuaba powder,
liquid, or extract?
I still have not been able to find the answer to this question. I need to experiment some more to determine which form is best. The capsules seem to work well since I have experience taking them. Much also depends on the manufacturer, the quality of the herb, and how the extract, liquid, or tincture is prepared. Liquid extract tinctures and preparations should work well, too, if they are concentrated enough. Another option is to open a catuaba pill capsule and place the contents in a small amount of alcohol or wine.
Do muira pauma and catuaba need to be dissolved in
an alcohol tincture in order to work? Won't the powdered form just pass through
the body unused? is it better to make a catuaba tincture from the
capsules? Does use lead to penis enlargement?
Actually both are potent as a powder in capsules. All one has to do is to take muira puama and cautaba in capsule form and one will realize how potent they are after a few days. Sometimes tinctures do work better due to better absorption.
The well-documented historical use of catuaba bark, and my personal experience with patients, lead me to believe that it does have aphrodisiac properties. With its popularity gradually becoming more prominent, it would help us all if more attention and research focused on the potential benefits of this interesting plant.
I have a problem with an overly sensitive organ causing me to have premature ejaculation, unsustained erection and lack of hardness. Is there an alternative that I can use that does not aggressively enhance the sensation on my private part but will provide lasting stiffness. I'm in my early 40s, healthy and exercise a few times a week with no or little anxiety attacks and only take multivitamins on a daily basis.
Catuaba is an option since it has a tendency to enhance blood flow without much of a difference in sensation.
Sometimes misspelled as catauba or catawba