What is Tongkat Ali?

Debra Mastrianna

Tongkat Ali, Eurycoma Longifolia, also known as Malaysian Ginseng, comes from the root of the Tongkat Ali tree.  The medicinal plant is found mainly in the deep rainforests of South-East Asian countries.  Tongkat Ali is considered by herbalists to be an adaptogen; an herb that helps the body adapt to physical, chemical, and biological stress.  The plant contains many bioactive compounds, including alkaloids and steroids, but (Structurally complex and highly oxygenated degraded triterpenes) are the predominate active compound in the roots.

The general components of Tongkat Ali consists of various bioactive compounds, including eurycomalactone, eurycomaoside, eurycolactone, and eurycomanone, as well as alkaloids and quassinoids, .  Quassinoids are found to contain anti-cancer, anti-ulcer, and anti-parasitic effects, while alkaloids contain antibacterial and anticancer properties.

In alternative medicine, Tongkat Ali is said to increase strength and energy raise testosterone levels, promote muscle strength, stimulate appetite and address other conditions such as erectile dysfunction, decreased libido, fatigue, and stress.  It also contains antibiotic properties. 

Increased Testosterone Production

Testosterone is one of the key elements in our body that is associated with masculinity, energy, mood, stamina, libido, and overall general health. And Tongkat Ali is a natural resource that, in recent years, has been successfully proven by scientists to regulate testosterone hormonal levels in both men and women.  In fact, testosterone is responsible for many of the functions in our body.

As we age, testosterone levels can drop in both men and women, with testosterone levels falling to only 40-50 percent by the age 60.  Although Tongkat Ali benefits men more than women, it may be suitable for both, depending on your health objectives.  Tongkat Ali may improve body function, increase energy and strengthen hormonal activity, while fueling your body and reducing stress and anxiety.

Improved Sexual Health- Libido

Tongkat Ali regulates the testosterone hormone that is responsible for sexual organs functions and libido.  It has been studied as a natural option to Viagra to support healthy male reproductive function and fertility, including sperm motility, semen production, libido, and erectile function.  However, Tongkat Ali may also benefit women as a natural and safe way to boost libido.

Immune Builder-Anti Parasitic

Our immune system protects our body from virus and bacteria. The immune system is complex and early research on Tongkat Ali showed promising results to boost our immune system. And the presence of quassinoids in Tongkat Ali may also have certain anti-parasitic properties which inhibit the growth of parasites, their movement, and their reproduction.

Improve Stamina-Strengthen Muscle

Because Tongkat Ali is highly anabolic and contains a high level of protein, it enables growth and mineralization of bone and increases muscle mass.  And Tongkat Ali benefits men and women with regard to building muscle mass.

Stimulate Weight Loss-Reduce Body Fat

Tongkat Ali is also a popular performance ingredient, when combined with other herbs, in the fitness and sports community, providing a boost to strength and muscle development.  There is some evidence that Tongkat Ali may potentially contribute to weight or fat loss for both men and women.  However, the best way to achieve significant weight loss is through a combination of exercise, proper nutrition, and the beneficial supplements.


Tongkat Ali may also be a potential treatment for osteoporosis. Osteoporosis occurs when the bone becomes porous, much like honeycomb, and holes and spaces in become larger than in healthy bone.  The bone disease that occurs as the bones become weak then become susceptible to break or crack. 

Improve Mood-Reduce Stress

Tongkat Ali contains alkaloids, a bio-active compound, which is found in coffee, nicotine, and other natural ingredients, that produces a calming Zen effect.  It has been proven by scientists to reduce anger, tension and confusion, all factors that influence our mood and our stress levels. And may be a natural alternative, without the side effects of Celexa, Zoloft or Prozac.

Possible Side Effects

Side effects may include restlessness, anxiety, and insomnia.

Because Tongkat Ali may raise testosterone levels, it should not be used by people with conditions that would be adversely affected by higher testosterone levels, such as heart disease, hormone-sensitive cancers, liver or kidney disease, or sleep apnea.

Tongkat Ali should not be used by people who are pregnant or nursing, children, those with medical conditions or with a weakened immune system.

Tongkat Ali may interact with certain medications, such as blood pressure medication, anticoagulant and antiplatelet medications, drugs that lower blood sugar or insulin levels, immunosuppressant drugs or other supplements that may not interact appropriately.

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