Testosterone boosting supplements: Ginseng

Ginseng is the grand-daddy of all testosterone boosting supplements. The roots of this plant have been used for centuries in Chinese medicine as a "yang tonic" to increase your all-around masculine energy.

Increasing testosterone levels is a delicate balancing act. There are actually very few ways to directly increase your testosterone levels. Nature is far too complex for that to work well in the long run. So instead, we look for ways to indirectly boost testosterone.

Ginseng, in fact, does not boost directly testosterone. Instead, ginseng acts on the nervous system-- essentially giving you the effects of testosterone boosting supplements without directly increasing you T-level (1). In fact, Ginseng acts at the level of your erection, working with the nitric oxide in your system (2).

Here are some of the things ginseng has been shown to do in human and animal studies

1. Improves erections. Yes, it does. In a double-blind placebo-controlled clinical trial in Korea, ginseng was found to improve erectile function. In this case, 900 mg of Korean red ginseng was taken 3X per day. That's a high dose, but the improvements in erection rigidity and duration were quite significant too (3).

2. Enhanced sperm motility. A Chinese study on sperm donated from 23 patients with weak sperm motility found that Panax notoginseng extract improved the motility of sperm over controls (4).

3. Improved copulatory behavior in depressed mice There are all kinds of studies showing that ginseng supplements cause male mice and rats to be more likely to mount females. My favorite study looks at the effects of prolonged isolation on male mice. In fact, these mice won't even bother to get on top of a female in heat (5). That's pretty depressing, but a lot of men who have spent long periods of time in isolation can probably sympathize with that. The study found that ginseng supplementation prevented that from happening--- isolated males jumped on the females like sailors just off the boat! Cheers to that.

As I pointed out in the principles section, these effects will deliver the most robust T-boosting results in the long run. The most powerful testosterone boosting supplement you have is your erection. Every time you enjoy a full hard-on, you are getting solid, long lasting testosterone increases. It also is probably what you were looking for in a T-booster anyway.

Ginseng has something else going for it beyond it's indirect testosterone boosting supplements effects. It has been tested in over 6000 Korean subjects over the age of 55 over 18 years! Talk about a good safety profile! For men only, frequent ginseng supplementation was associated with lower mortality figures.

Bottom line: Ginseng is a safe way to improve your erections and indirectly supplement the effects of testosterone on your system. Ginseng is nature's oldest known testosterone boosting supplement.

If ginseng takes care of the sexual performance side of your principles-based T-boosting program, you will definitely want to look into something on the physical activity end, too. I recommend you check out this article on a very different set of testosterone boosting supplements here.

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1. Murphy, LL, Lee, TJ. "Ginseng, sex behavior, and nitric oxide." Ann NY Acad Sci. 962 (2002) 372-7.
2. Wang, X, Chu, S, Qian, T, et al. "Gensenoside Rg1 improves male copulatory behavior via nitric oxide.cyclic guanosine monophosphate pathway." J Sex Med. (2009) Epub Sep 14.
3. Hong, B, Ji, YH, Hong, JH, et al. "A double-blind crossover study evaluating the efficacy of korean red ginseng in patients with erectile dysfunction: a preliminary report." J Urol. 168 (2002) 2070-3.
4. Chen, JC, Xu, MX, Chen, LD, et al. "Effect of panax notoginseng extracts on inferior sperm motility in vitro." Am J Chin Med 27 (1999) 123-8.5. Yoshimura, H, Kimura, N, Sugiura, K. "Preventative effects of various ginseng saponins on the development of copulatory disorder induced by prolonged individual housing in male mice." Meth Find Exp Clin Pharmacol. 20 (1998) 59-64.6. Yi, SW, Sull, JW, Hong, JS, et al. "Association between ginseng and mortality: Kangwha cohort study." J Altern Complement Med. 15 (2009) 921-8.