Musculation et tribulus
Le Tribulus terrestris is used for bodybuilding as a dietary supplement to increase testosterone naturally (like maca from Peru). What is tribulus terrestris? Are these benefits real?
What is tribulus?
Tribulus terrestris is a small leafy plant that can be classified as an adaptogenic plant. The root and fruit of the plant have been used medicinally in traditional Chinese and Indian Ayurvedic medicine.
Traditionally, people used it for a host of potential effects, including improving sex drive, keeping the urinary tract healthy, and reducing edema.
Today, this herbal remedy is widely used as a general health supplement, for sexual dysfunction issues, as well as in products that claim to increase testosterone levels.
What are the benefits of tribulus?
This plant raises testosterone levels through its active ingredient, protodioscin. Through its action on the brain, this steroidal saponin amplifies the secretion of luteinizing hormone: this is carried by the blood to the testicles where it stimulates the synthesis of testosterone.
An increase in testosterone levels will help you in your muscle development and fat loss.
A high level of testosterone will lead to higher aggressiveness, essential for having more “aggressiveness” during high intensity weight training and therefore for gaining more strength and muscle.
What do the scientific studies say?
To prove the benefits of Tribulus terrestris for bodybuilding, some laboratories (which manufacture and sell it…) highlight unpublished studies (of which we do not know the methodology), carried out in Bulgaria in the early 1980s.
Bulgarian researchers have scientifically demonstrated that Tribulus terrestris increases testosterone levels. This would therefore stimulate muscle performance. No official study of these experiences has been published to date.
More recently (2008), a serious study1 and up to current standards was carried out in Australia: during 5 weeks of intensive training, a group of 22 rugby players took either a placebo or 450 mg of Tribulus terrestris extract per day. The researchers found no difference between the two groups on the following three points: gain in muscle strength, loss of fat mass and testosterone levels!
Another 8-week study was done on bodybuilders with a group taking a placebo versus a group taking Tribulus Terrestris. No difference was found on the same points as the Australian study…
Does it build muscle?
Is tribulus terrestris a marketing stunt? Each new study contradicts another.
So we can’t say…
To find out if it really increases strength and muscle mass, nothing prevents you from testing tribulus terrestris and making your own experience.
You can find tribulus terrestris in some pharmacies, herbalists and of course on the internet.
What are the side effects ?
No proven side effects in the short term. Cytotoxicity has been mentioned, which clearly leaves the need to carry out pharmacological studies. For long-term effects, there is currently insufficient data to establish its safety.
What Is The Recommended Dose?
The recommended dose is between 750 mg and 1500 mg per day taken twice: once with breakfast and once about an hour before training.