Most people don’t know Tongkat Ali (Eurycoma Longofolia) is a powerful adaptogen herb.

While it’s not one of the 7 most powerful primary adaptogens, Tongkat Ali, also known as Pasak Bumi, has long been a staple natural healer in Asian cultures for centuries because of its wide variety of benefits. 

Similar to the amazing benefits of Shatavari, which has helped women throughout the ages, Tongkat Ali has many powerful healing properties that are highly important to a man’s health. 

Also known simply as “tongkat,” this powerful root has long been used as a dietary supplement for men because it has been shown to increase testosterone levels and enhance sexual vitality.

But the benefits of tongkat go way beyond just these two items. 

Studies show that Tongkat builds muscle and strength, reduces belly fat, improves sleep and relaxation, and improves mental health. In fact, it’s because of reasons like these that Tongkat Ali has been an important traditional and herbal remedy of Southeast Asian medicine for over 400 years (1). 

Let’s now dig deeper into some specific uses of Tongkat Ali.

Uses of Tongkat Ali

You may have heard of Tongkat Ali as longjack or Malaysian ginseng, but it is known in the scientific community as Eurycoma longifolia.  

Again, similar to the Shatavari root, the roots of Tongkat contain important compounds that have different effects on the body, including flavonoids, alkaloids, and antioxidants (1)(2). It’s these multiple compounds and healing effects that put Tongkat in the adaptogen category of natural healers.

Traditionally, Tongkat Ali was used to raise testosterone levels, treat male infertility, and increase muscle mass. It was also used to relieve malaria, high blood pressure, and anxiety, plus it served as an anti-aging compound. (2)

Modern science has thoroughly researched the powerful benefits of Tongkat. (3)  Some other current uses of this herb include:

  • To relieve stress and alleviate anxiety (4)

Reduced cortisol levels result in significant improvements in anger and tension levels in the body.

Additionally, Tongkat might be an effective remedy to sleep deprivation and exercise training due to reduced stress levels. Other impacts include decreased anxiety and improved mood. One study found that taking Tongkat Ali every day reduced stress hormone levels by 16%.

  • Improve body composition

Tongkat Ali contains ergogenic acid, a substance that can help increase muscle mass and aid in fat loss (6). With long-term supplementation, Tongkat Ali extract can also improve endurance performance.

  • Some anti-disease properties (4)

Quassinoids in Tongkat Ali can be used to fight some serious diseases as quassinoids are toxic to cells that can damage the health of the lung and cervix. Studies also show Tongkat supports prostate health.

  • Anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial effects

Tongkat Ali is effective against certain bacteria, including Escherichia coli and Salmonella typhi.  Root extracts of Tongkat also exhibit antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties (1)(2).

Does Tongkat Ali Increase Testosterone?

Tongkat Ali’s ability to increase testosterone levels in men is well studied and documented. The shrubby plant contains active compounds called quassinoids, proven to increase testosterone levels (3).

Tongkat Ali works by releasing free testosterone from its binding hormone. The additional hormones help restore testosterone to normal levels. Low testosterone can result from chronic stress, weight gain, diseases, aging, plus chemotherapy and radiation treatments. Inadequate testosterone levels can result in low libido, muscle loss, weight gain, depression, bad mood, erectile dysfunction and have been shown to significantly reduce male fertility.

By releasing free testosterone into your body, Tongkat Ali results in improved sex drive, greater overall well-being, and reduction in fatigue. With increased testosterone, you might notice:

  • A significant increase in lean mass
  • Increasing strength
  • Superior muscle recovery
  • A substantial decrease in body fat percentage

What's more, Tongkat can help boost your athletic performance. It can be used to reduce fatigue and improve endurance. Quassinoids can also help your body use energy more efficiently. Put simply, Tongkat Ali has been proven as a great supplement not just for men but also for athletes and bodybuilders.

Tongkat can also improve symptoms of low T, late-onset hypogonadism, or testosterone deficiency syndrome. 

Does Tongkat Ali Work For Erectile Dysfunction?

The search for an erectile dysfunction treatment dates back to centuries before the introduction of certain pills in the 1990s.

Tongkat has long been used to support healthy sexual function and treat erectile dysfunction in men. By increasing testosterone levels in the body, Tongkat can enhance male fertility and sexual performance. Moreover, studies in humans and animals show that Tongkat stimulates sexual arousal making it one of nature’s aphrodisiacs.

A study on the traditional uses and chemistry of the plant suggests other beneficial effects of Tongkat, including (9):

  • Improved sperm motility and concentration
  • Enhanced erectile function and sexual performance
  • Increased production of testosterone

Another study suggested that the aphrodisiac effects of Tongkat were a result of rising testosterone levels, reduced stress, and enhancement of neurotransmitters in the brain. As mentioned, Tongkat is a powerful adaptogen that works to reduce stress hormone levels.

Clinical studies show significant improvement in penile rigidity, improved libido, and overall satisfaction (10).

How Long Before Tongkat Ali Starts to Work?

There's no definitive answer to how long it takes Tongkat Ali to work. How long Tongkat takes to work will depend on your lifestyle. Within the first hour of taking Tongkat, you might experience increased mental alertness and energy.

Depending on your age and health condition, Tongkat starts taking effect in several hours to several days. However, the herb does work to increase testosterone levels in the body, and as a result, you might notice an uptick in your mood and energy levels within 12 hours of taking the supplement.

After about two weeks, Tongkat will impact your endocrine system as well as testosterone levels. If you're in competitive sports, using Tongkat can help you get ahead with more muscle, strength, power, and faster recovery from strenuous exercise.

Another factor that impacts the length of the Tongkat treatment period includes what you're using it for. If you're using it to increase male fertility, one study found that taking 200mg of Tongkat (Peak Male contains 400 mg per serving) could increase sperm count and motility after three months of consistent use. A 12-week study replicated the same results and managed to increase lean body mass.

It’s also important to note that you will not experience any withdrawal symptoms even after long-term use of the drug. However, you might notice a gradual drop in performance.

Can Women Take Tongkat Ali?

Tongkat is safe for women. 

In fact, most people don’t know that women need testosterone for optimal health, just like men.

While it's true women only produce about 10% as much testosterone as men -- this important hormone is critically important for a woman's overall wellness and vitality. Additionally, testosterone has essential effects on ovarian function and sexual behavior.

This is why EmpowHER has 200mg of Tongkat Ali.

Another interesting fact is that women have 10 times more testosterone than estrogen in their bodies in their healthy reproductive years. (11)

Research shows that testosterone can do more for women than many once believed.  That's because women need testosterone for the same reasons men do. (12, 13)

No matter your gender, a testosterone boost can impact your health and quality of life. Some benefits of Tongkat for women’s health include:

  • Maintain a healthy weight

Testosterone can help increase your metabolism by stabilizing hormones. This applies to both men and women.

  • Promotes skeletal health

Increasing testosterone levels decreases the chances of developing osteoporosis, especially in menopausal women. During menopause, estrogen levels reduce, resulting in a debilitating disease characterized by fragile bones.

  • Mood sport

Tongkat works like an adaptogen in that it reduces stress, tension, and anger. It can also result in improved memory.

So, yes! Women can take Tongkat. It’s just as beneficial to women as it is to men. Maintaining healthy levels of testosterone is necessary for optimal body functioning. 

Best Tongkat Ali Supplement

The Orang Asli aboriginals in Malaysia first discovered the Tongkat Ali root as a powerful medicinal herb.

Today, Tongkat Ali is an integral part of medicine cabinets around the world. 

Since its discovery, Tongkat Ali has found plenty of usage in modern-day medicinal discoveries.

There are three typical ways Tongkat Ali is used:

  1. Functional supplement – used as an additive in coffee, tea, and other beverages
  2. Performance supplement – used as a pre-workout supplement to support fitness enthusiasts and athletes maximize muscle growth and recovery, energy, plus stamina
  3. Dietary supplement – available in capsule form as a daily nutritional supplement

So, what’s the best way to take Tongkat Ali? There are currently two ways in which you can supplement with Tongkat Ali. 

  • You can either drink it as an herbal tea, or
  • Crush the root into a powder, capsule it, and take it in pill form. 

The tea method has been used for generations in both rural and urban areas. The problem is: boiling eradicates all nutrients in the show.

But today, the technology exists to safely grind the root, powder the root, maintain the crucial nutrients, and then encapsulate it.  Now, you can experience all the benefits of using freeze-dried Tongkat Ali, which offers superior health benefits due to its higher potency. This is precisely what we have done for you in Peak Male for men and EmpowHER for women.


Tongat Ali also goes by these other names:
Longjack, pasak bumi, Akar Pasak Bumi, Ali's Umbrella, Ali's Walking Stick, Batang Pasak Bumi, Canne d'Ali, Eurycoma, Eurycoma Longifolia Jack, Eurycoma merguensis, Ginseng de Malaisie, Kayu Dali, Long Jack, Manotes Asiatica, Picroxylon Siamese, Sengkayap, Tongkat Ali, Umpudumaidu, Wonod Mondou, Malaysian ginseng, Eurycoma Longifolia, penawar pahit, bedara pahit, bedara putih, bedara merah, hempedu pahit, payung ali, tongkat baginda, muntah bumi, akar jangat semang, tongkat rasul, setunjang bumi, Babi kurus, Tungke ali, Phiak, Tung saw, Tho nan, Antong sar, antoung sar.


Resources

  1. Bhat, R., & Karim, A. A. (2010). Tongkat Ali (Eurycoma longifolia Jack): a review on its ethnobotany and pharmacological importance. Fitoterapia, 81(7), 669-679.
  2. Rehman, Shaheed Ur, Kevin Choe, and Hye Hyun Yoo. "Review on a traditional herbal medicine, Eurycoma longifolia Jack (Tongkat Ali): its traditional uses, chemistry, evidence-based pharmacology and toxicology." Molecules 21.3 (2016): 331.
  3. Tambi, M. I. B. M., & Imran, M. K. (2010). Eurycoma longifolia Jack in managing idiopathic male infertility. Asian journal of andrology, 12(3), 376.
  4. Moses, Lusia Barek, et al. "Unfermented Freeze-Dried Leaf Extract of Tongkat Ali (Eurycoma longifolia Jack.) Induced Cytotoxicity and Apoptosis in MDA-MB-231 and MCF-7 Breast Cancer Cell Lines." Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine 2021 (2021).
  5. Talbott, Shawn M., et al. "Effect of Tongkat Ali on stress hormones and psychological mood state in moderately stressed subjects." Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition 10.1 (2013): 1-7.
  6. Khanijo, Thasanee, and Wannee Jiraungkoorskul. "Review ergogenic effects of long jack, Eurycoma longifolia." Pharmacognosy reviews 10.20 (2016): 139.
  7. Panche, A. N., Diwan, A. D., & Chandra, S. R. (2016). Flavonoids: an overview. Journal of nutritional science, 5.
  8. McBride, J. A., Carson III, C. C., & Coward, R. M. (2016). Testosterone deficiency in the aging male. Therapeutic advances in urology, 8(1), 47-60.
  9. Chan, Kit-Lam, et al. "The effect of Eurycoma longifolia on sperm quality of male rats." Natural product communications 4.10 (2009): 1934578X0900401004.
  10. Talbott, S. M. (2013). Human Performance and Sports Applications of Tongkat Ali (Eurycoma longifolia). In Nutrition and Enhanced Sports Performance (pp. 501-505). Academic Press.
  11. Dyett Linda, “Should Women Consider Taking Testosterone?,” Next Avenue, Jul 15, 2013.
  12. Rohr UD, “The impact of testosterone imbalance on depression and women's health,” Maturitas. 2002 Apr 15;41 Suppl 1:S25-46. (low t = obesity, depression, osteo, low lib)
  13. Glaser R, et al. Beneficial effects of testosterone therapy in women measured by the validated Menopause Rating Scale (MRS). Maturitas (2010), doi:10.1016/j.maturitas.2010.12.001

What is Tongkat Ali?

Also known simply as “tongkat,” this powerful root has long been used as a dietary supplement for men because it has been shown to increase testosterone levels and enhance sexual vitality.

But the benefits of tongkat go way beyond just these two items. 

Studies show that Tongkat builds muscle and strength, reduces belly fat, improves sleep and relaxation, and improves mental health.

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Excerpt

What is Tongkat Ali?

Also known simply as “tongkat,” this powerful root has long been used as a dietary supplement for men because it has been shown to increase testosterone levels and enhance sexual vitality.

But the benefits of tongkat go way beyond just these two items. 

Studies show that Tongkat builds muscle and strength, reduces belly fat, improves sleep and relaxation, and improves mental health.