Herbal Supplements

Tribulus Terrestris Benefits: Health, Skin, Side-Effects and Scientific Studies


Tribulus terrestris is a small leafy plant that grows in parts of Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Both the root and fruit have been used medicinally in Traditional Chinese Medicine and Indian Ayurveda for centuries.

Tribulus Terrestris: A Deep Dive into Its Health Benefits and Scientific Studies

Tribulus terrestris, often referred to as puncture vine or devil’s thorn, is a plant that has been used for centuries in traditional medicine systems worldwide. This article will delve into the health benefits of Tribulus terrestris, backed up by scientific studies.

Health Benefits of Tribulus Terrestris

A variety of potential health benefits have been linked to Tribulus terrestris, from its reputed aphrodisiac properties to its proposed heart health benefits. Let’s examine these benefits in detail, supported by scientific studies.

Enhanced Athletic Performance

Some athletes use Tribulus for its potential to enhance athletic performance. A study published in the Journal of Dietary Supplements suggests that Tribulus terrestris might enhance strength and body composition in resistance-trained males.

Heart Health

Tribulus terrestris may also contribute to heart health. Early research suggests it might improve heart health and reduce symptoms of angina, potentially due to its anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidative properties.

Blood Sugar Control

There is some evidence that Tribulus terrestris may help with blood sugar control. A study in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology found that it significantly reduced blood sugar levels, suggesting it could be helpful in managing diabetes.

Libido and Sexual Function

Tribulus terrestris has a long history of use as an aphrodisiac. While results have been mixed, some studies suggest that it may enhance libido and sexual function, particularly in men experiencing reduced sexual desire.

Reduction of Inflammation

Due to its potent anti-inflammatory properties, Tribulus terrestris is also being studied for its effects on reducing inflammation. A study published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology found that extracts of Tribulus terrestris showed significant anti-inflammatory activity.

Tribulus Terrestris and Skin Health: A Dive into Scientific Studies

Tribulus Terrestris and Skin Health

The potential benefits of Tribulus terrestris are not just internal; it might also have implications for skin health.

Wound Healing

Tribulus terrestris has been traditionally used in wound healing. A study in the Journal of Traditional and Complementary Medicine supports this, showing that it can promote wound closure and healing.

Skin Infections

The antimicrobial properties of Tribulus terrestris could also make it useful in treating skin infections. Research published in the Journal of Photochemistry and Photobiology suggests that it might be effective against certain types of bacteria and fungi that cause skin infections.

Skin Inflammation

Topical application of Tribulus terrestris has also been found to improve skin inflammation. A study published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology demonstrates that the topical application of Tribulus terrestris extract improves skin inflammation in mice, suggesting potential benefits for conditions like atopic dermatitis.

Skin Aging

A study published in the journal Cosmetics clearly demonstrates the beneficial effect of a mixture containing Tribulus terrestris on skin photoaging, making it a potential ingredient in anti-aging skincare products.

Safety and Side Effects of Tribulus Terrestris: An Evidence-Based Look

Tribulus terrestris, a plant native to the Mediterranean, is widely used in traditional medicine for its potential health benefits. However, as with any natural supplement, it’s crucial to consider the safety and possible side effects. This article delves into these aspects, backed by scientific studies.

Overview of Tribulus Terrestris

Tribulus terrestris, often known as puncture vine, is a flowering plant used in traditional medicine across Asia and Europe. It’s believed to offer several health benefits, including enhanced athletic performance and improved heart health.

Safety of Tribulus Terrestris

As a natural supplement, Tribulus terrestris is generally considered safe for most people when taken appropriately and short-term. Several studies have revealed no significant adverse effects in healthy individuals using the supplement for up to 90 days.

However, long-term safety data is limited, and caution is advised for prolonged usage.

Side Effects of Tribulus Terrestris

Despite its general safety, some individuals may experience side effects from taking Tribulus terrestris.

Digestive Issues

The most commonly reported side effects are mild and relate to the digestive system. Some individuals might experience stomach pain, cramping, nausea or diarrhoea, particularly when starting the supplement or increasing the dosage.

Sleep Disturbances

Some people have reported experiencing sleep disturbances, such as insomnia or vivid dreams, after taking Tribulus terrestris. These effects appear to be more common when the supplement is taken close to bedtime.

Irregular Menstruation

Women may experience changes in their menstrual cycle, including irregular menstruation or missed periods. Pregnant and breastfeeding women should avoid using Tribulus terrestris due to insufficient safety data.

More Serious Side Effects

In rare cases, more serious side effects have been reported. These include increased heart rate, restlessness, and even kidney damage. However, these severe side effects appear to be extremely rare and typically occur only at very high dosages.

Who Should Avoid Tribulus Terrestris?

Certain individuals should exercise caution with Tribulus terrestris or avoid it altogether.

People with Hormone-Sensitive Conditions: As Tribulus terrestris may affect hormone levels, individuals with hormone-sensitive conditions, such as breast cancer, prostate cancer, or endometriosis, should avoid it.

People Taking Certain Medications: Tribulus terrestris may interact with certain medications, including blood thinners, diuretics, and diabetes medications. Always consult a healthcare professional before starting any new supplement if you’re taking medication.

Is Tribulus Terrestris Halal and Suitable for Muslims? An In-depth Exploration

Understanding Halal

Halal is an Arabic word meaning ‘permissible’ and refers to anything that is allowed according to Islamic law as defined in the Quran. It is most often used in the context of food and drink, but it can apply to all aspects of life, including medicine and dietary supplements.

Is Tribulus Terrestris Halal?

Based on the information available, Tribulus terrestris itself, as a plant, is halal. It is a natural product without any inherently haram (forbidden) substances. However, whether a specific Tribulus terrestris product is halal can depend on several factors, such as the way it is processed, any additional ingredients used, and the potential for cross-contamination with haram substances.

Processing and Additional Ingredients

Even if the Tribulus terrestris plant is halal, the processing methods or additional ingredients used in a particular supplement could potentially make it haram. For example, if a Tribulus terrestris supplement contains gelatine in its capsules, the supplement would not be halal unless the gelatine is sourced from a halal-certified animal.

Risk of Cross-Contamination

Cross-contamination is another factor to consider. If a Tribulus terrestris supplement is produced in a facility that also processes haram substances, there could be a risk of cross-contamination.

How to Ensure a Tribulus Terrestris Product is Halal

To ensure a Tribulus terrestris supplement is halal, look for products that have been certified as halal by a reputable certification body. These organisations inspect the sourcing, processing and packaging processes to ensure they meet Islamic dietary laws.

Several companies offer halal-certified Tribulus terrestris supplements. Always look for the halal certification logo on the packaging, and if in doubt, contact the manufacturer or certification body for confirmation.


In conclusion, whilst the Tribulus terrestris plant itself is halal, whether a specific Tribulus terrestris supplement is halal can depend on various factors such as the processing methods, additional ingredients, and the risk of cross-contamination. To ensure a product is halal, look for supplements that have been certified by a reputable halal certification body. As always, when considering taking any new supplement, it’s advisable to consult with a healthcare professional.