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Testosterone Booster Tribulus - What Can the Earth Star Really Do?
In the European Rapid Alert System RASFF, Tribulus products with non-approved ingredients have been recorded again and again in recent years.
What is Tribulus terrestris?
Tribulus terrestris, also known as (earth) root thorn, earth star or earth prickly nut, grows worldwide, often in warm regions such as the Mediterranean, Central Asia and tropical Africa. The plant contains a variety of saponins, including the steroid saponins furostanol and spirostanol.
Saponins are among the secondary plant substances. They are found in 75% of all plant species, so they are very widespread. You come z. B. in beans, spinach, peanuts, soy and many types of allium, such as leeks, onions and garlic. Some saponins can have a fungicidal, i.e. fungicidal, or cholesterol-lowering effect, but also hemolytic, i.e. H. certain blood cells can be broken down. The yam root is particularly rich in steroid saponins, but so is the asparagus.
In the past, the spirostanol dioscin, which also occurs in Tribulus terrestris, was used as a starting material for steroid hormone production.
Saponins are difficult to analyze and quantify. The amount and composition of the saponins contained in Tribulus terrestris vary considerably. They depend on the geographical origin, the part of the plant and the growth phase of the plant. The furostanol protodioscin is highlighted in many dietary supplements. When comparing plants from different origins, the lowest concentrations of protodioscin are found in plants from India and Vietnam. Higher values can be detected in plants from southern Europe. The fruits usually contain less than the leaves.
Which ingredients are contained in Tribulus terrestris products?
In addition to the necessary additives such as release agents, many products only contain “Tribulus terrestris extracts”. In most dietary supplements, it is not clear which parts of the plants are used. For many, high saponin contents of 80 to 90% are advertised. High-dose products contain up to 3,600 mg tribulus extract and up to 1,800 mg saponins (daily intake). It is usually unclear how the extract was prepared or how the saponins are composed. However, some manufacturers indicate the protodioscin content (often 20-25% of the saponins).
In addition to the plant extract, individual dietary supplements also contain the B vitamins pantothenic acid and zinc. This has the advantage for manufacturers that they can advertise the health claims approved for these substances: "Zinc contributes to the maintenance of normal testosterone levels in the blood and to normal protein synthesis" and "Pantothenic acid contributes to normal synthesis and normal metabolism Steroid hormones ".
For strength training, products are also offered that, in addition to Tribulus terrestris, contain a so-called ZMA mixture, which consists of zinc, a magnesium compound and vitamin B 6.
It cannot be ruled out that products containing Tribulus terrestris contain unspecified anabolic or androgenic steroids.
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