Veterinarian Reviewed on January 10, 2012 by Paulina Nelega, RH
Posted in Uncategorized
Yohimbe (Pausinystalia yohimbe)
Yohimbe (Pausinystalia yohimbe) is an evergreen tree that is well known to have powerful medicinal properties especially in the treatment of impotence and infertility. Yohimbe is native to Africa but its uses have been known throughout the world. This tree has green rounded leaves that have a noticeable symmetrical growth pattern. Although the entire plant may be used for medicinal purposes, the bark of the Yohimbe is the most common part that is used for treating many types of diseases especially increasing sexual function in both men and women.
History and Origin
The Yohimbe tree is a sturdy plant that owes its popularity in its major use as an aphrodisiac and also for the treatment of impotence. Little is known as to where this usage was first developed but in West Africa and in South America, the Yohimbe is considered to be the herbal equivalent to the pharmaceutical Viagra. The major marketing of Yohimbe is solely for the purpose of increasing sexual functioning especially in men and also as an anabolic steroid enhancing athletic performance which was done in the later part of the 21st century.
During ancient times, the Yohimbe was used as a sexual enhancer or as an aphrodisiac. Tribes in West Africa used the bark of the Yohimbe tree as an overall stimulant and a remedy to increase vigor and athletic endurance.
In modern times, the Yohimbe tree has been the subject of many different studies and clinical trials and has been found to contain an alkaloid called Yohimbe which functions as a monoamine oxidase inhibitor increasing norepinephrine levels and that also stimulates the central nervous system. This action triggered dilated blood vessels which then treated erectile dysfunction in men. It has also been noted that Yohimbe can also increase testosterone levels in men increasing physical endurance and acting as an anabolic steroid.
The Yohimbe bark is also useful to increase overall physical health and gives an overall feeling of wellness and increased physical stimulation in both men and women.
The Yohimbe has been the subject of many studies regarding safety and effectiveness. The Yohimbe may cause dizziness, headaches, increased pulse rate, mood changes and an increased frequency in urination. There is a slight possibility of people having allergic reactions to Yohimbe and it is very important to note vital signs (respiration, pulse rate and blood pressure readings) when taking Yohimbe supplements. Along with changes in vital signs, itchiness, rash and severe dizziness may occur.
Since many people would prefer to take Yohimbe because of the sexual enhancement it gives, there is an increased possibility of over dosage. You should call your local poison control center or proceed to an emergency facility in case of over dosage.
If you would like to take Yohimbe as a health supplement and/or a sexual enhancer, consult first with your primary care physician or naturopathic doctor regarding the ideal dose for you. You may also need to ask for any interactions of Yohimbe with your current medications since it increases central nervous system functioning and also has a direct effect on cardiac rate and blood flow. Yohimbe supplements are generally contraindicated for pregnant and breastfeeding women.
Paulina Nelega, RH, has been in private practice as a Clinical Herbalist for over 15 years. She has developed and taught courses in herbal medicine, and her articles on health have appeared in numerous publications. She is very passionate about the healing power of nature. Ask Dr. Jan