“On pavements and the bark of trees, I have found whole worlds.” – Mark Tobey (1)
Yohimbine is included in numerous organic supplements and has several potential medicinal benefits, such as treating impotence and enhancing athletic performance. If you’re interested in the details of this mysterious tree, you’ve come to the right place. Sometimes when you’re learning about supplements you require additional information. That’s why websites like Supplement Lexicon can be a useful resource for looking up facts.
This review will examine the benefits and drawbacks of Yohimbe, how it functions on a biological level, and whether it’s worth using as a supplement. It should help you decide if this is the right substance for you.
What is Yohimbe?
Yohimbe is an evergreen tree also called Pausinystalia Johimbe, native to central and west Africa. The bark of the tree contains a potent substance called yohimbine which is the source of the medicinal benefits.
Yohimbine is a potent nerve-blocker. It’s added to many natural supplements, generally those for male sexual enhancement.
There’s a prescription medication called Yohimbine hydrochloride in the United States which is used to treat impotence, but that is a different substance (2).
Benefits of Yohimbe
Most frequently, Yohimbe is used as an aphrodisiac and to treat erectile dysfunction in men. There’s evidence to support its effectiveness in this realm.
For example, a study in the International Journal of Impotence Research examined the effect of Yohimbe on 18 men and found that it was quite helpful in treating erectile dysfunction in about half the participants (3).
Another research study gave veterans with erectile dysfunction Yohimbe for a month. At that point, 34% of the men had some improvement in symptoms, and 20% could achieve full erections (4).
There’s some speculation that Yohimbe can improve athletic performance, and that it can help people burn fat and lose weight. A study published in Research in Sports Medicine looked at the effect of Yohimbe on the body composition and athletic performance of soccer players.
They found little effect on athletics, but the players did lose a significant amount of fat (5).
There’s very little concrete evidence that Yohimbe improves performance at sports. In general, the research on weight loss is mixed, with some studies finding a positive link and others discovering no effect.
Yohimbe has also been used for several medicinal purposes, such as treating dementia, exhaustion, diabetes complications, insomnia, leprosy, low blood pressure, and obesity (6).
How Does It Work?
Yohimbine is a powerful nerve blocker that inhibits alpha-2 adrenergic receptors in the body. These receptors are responsible for preventing men from having an erection. Therefore blocking them may alleviate erectile dysfunction.
They are also thought to play a role in libido (7). In addition, Yohimbe stimulates the production of additional nitric oxide.
Nitric oxide improves circulation all over the body, including the penis. This is why it’s a helpful treatment for erectile dysfunction (8).
Cautions About Yohimbe
As useful as Yohimbe is in several realms, it’s also associated with quite a few side effects. Some of these include high blood pressure, anxiety, racing heartbeat, and headaches.
In very high amounts the substance can be dangerous and has even caused heart failure (9). One study looked at the calls about Yohimbe to the California Poison Control System between 2000 and 2006.
There were more calls for this substance than for any others. People calling about Yohimbe experienced stomach problems, tachycardia, anxiety, and high blood pressure (10).
It’s important to remember that these users may have been taking Yohimbe in high doses. There have been studies examining the usage of this substance where participants experienced very few side effects (3).
Some natural supplements include Yohimbe, but they don’t cite a dosage. If you’re going to take a product that includes this substance, given the potential side effects, it’s important that you choose one that’s very upfront about the dosage.
Choose a supplement that does not include a high amount of Yohimbe if you’re concerned about the risks. Make sure the dosage is clearly marked on the bottle.
Usage and Dosage
The recommended dosage for erectile dysfunction is 5.4 mg, 3 times a day. If you should experience any side effects, go down to a dose of 2-7 mg 3 times a day, and gradually work back up. Apply caution if you have low body weight and err on the side of a lower dose (10).
Is It Worth It?
Looking at the research into Yohimbe, it appears to be most useful for the treatment of erectile dysfunction. If you’re considering using the substance for this purpose, it’s important to weigh the benefits against the risks and make your own decision.
There are possible health problems that could go along with using this substance. However, these issues are not given and tend to occur when you take a high dose.
In terms of erectile dysfunction, there is some research to support its efficacy. If this is a problem you have, Yohimbe could be a helpful option to consider.
It’s important to remember that before you begin taking a supplement with Yohimbe, you should make an appointment with your doctor and have a discussion about it.
Make sure that the product is medically suitable for you and get medical approval before you start a regimen.
Yohimbe is an evergreen tree with a potent nerve blocker, Yohimbine, found in its bark. This substance is included in a number of natural supplements, mostly for male sexual enhancement purposes.
There are studies that do support the efficacy of Yohimbe for the treatment of impotence. The results are not overwhelming, but studies have consistently shown positive effects in comparison with placebo (7).
If you’re considering using this substance or taking a supplement which includes it, be aware of the potential side effects. If you do experience any uncomfortable symptoms, stop taking the product immediately, and see a doctor if you think it’s necessary.
In addition, make sure you take a low dose to lessen the chances of having side effects. If you choose to try it, we hope Yohimbe is helpful for you and has the intended effect.