Tongkat Ali extract is an herbal remedy derived from the root of the Tongkat Ali tree. A compound that increases the production of testosterone, it is often used in sexual enhancement products. The extract is also known to produce other health benefits.
The Tongkat Ali tree is native to the jungles of Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia. Natives in these countries consider every part of the tree useful in homeopathic remedies. Its root may be used in energy enhancement, as an overall tonic, and in aphrodisiac supplements. People in Southeast Asia have also used the remedy to combat bacteria and malaria.
Known as the Asian Viagra, Tongkat Ali extract is most commonly used as a sexual enhancement herbal remedy. In Malaysia, the plant has been used for many years to increase sexual performance, sexual desire, and libido. It has been used as a treatment for erectile dysfunction. It may also have effects on sperm production.
Due to its testosterone-increasing effects, Tongkat Ali extract is used by athletes for muscle mass and strength building. Ulcers and tumors are said to be remedied through use of the extract. The remedy is also reportedly effective for reducing fevers.
Available as a liquid extract, Tongkat Ali extract is also available in powdered root or capsule form. As a sexual performance aid, it is often combined with several other extracts for optimal effects. Other possible side effects from taking Tongkat Ali extract include insomnia and aggressiveness. Anxiety and restlessness can result from taking the extract as well. Children and pregnant or nursing women should refrain from using this herbal remedy.
People with weakened immune systems, prostate cancer, heart disease, diabetes, liver disease, diabetes, kidney disease, sleep apnea, or prostate cancer should also avoid Tongkat Ali extract. Taking multiple aphrodisiac supplements in the same 24-hour period can cause side effects, including fever and over stimulation. Frequent daily use of the extract is not recommended.
The Tongkat Ali usually grows up to 40 feet (12 meters) in height. The tree comes from the Simaroubaceae family, and is also known as the Eurycoma longifolia, Pasak Bumi, or Longjack. Taller trees have been known to grow up to 49 feet (15 meters). The Longjack features pinnate leaves arranged in spirals, green fruit that ripens red, and large panicles of flowers with small petals. The extract is taken from the plant's roots using a water-based solution.