Tribulus is a dietary supplement derived from the puncture vine, or Tribulus terrestris, a creeping type of vine that is native to parts of Asia Minor and South Central Asia. The correct tribulus dosage can be difficult to determine, because nutritional supplements are not closely regulated by most government agencies. Most manufacturers of supplements recommend a tribulus dosage of 250 to 750 milligrams per day, divided into three equal doses.
This supplement is taken for a number of purposes but is used primarily for treatment of erectile dysfunction and to increase levels of testosterone. Some studies suggest that tribulus does increase testosterone production and increases intercavernous pressure, or blood flow to the penis. These studies have not been substantiated by any government agencies or medical associations, though. Tribulus also is used in various parts of the world as a folk remedy for many ailments, such as constipation, headaches, liver problems and kidney problems.
Before starting any dietary supplement for any reason, be sure to consult a medical professional. Your doctor will be able to help you decide whether tribulus is right for you. Next, you should consult a pharmacist before choosing a brand of tribulus extract, to make sure that you choose a reputable brand. Tribulus capsules come in a variety of sizes, from 200 milligrams to 1,500 milligrams, and many formulas contain other herbal ingredients. Make sure that the formula you choose has no ingredients that are not suited to your needs.
The correct tribulus dosage is partially a function of your body weight and your metabolism. Some advocates recommend that you start with a smaller dosage at first, then gradually increase the dosage over a period of one to two weeks. Some also recommend taking tribulus in a pattern of two weeks on the supplement, then two weeks off.
Some people who have taken tribulus have reported mild side effects, including a feeling of warmth, restlessness, higher energy level and slightly elevated heart rate. The side effects seem to depend on the dosage. If you experience any side effects while taking this supplement, you should gradually reduce your tribulus dosage until the side effects subside. Also, tribulus should not be taken by pregnant women, because it can alter hormone levels, which might be harmful to a developing fetus.
The correct tribulus dosage also might be a factor of body mass index (BMI). If you have a higher percentage of body fat or higher BMI, a slightly lower dosage might be just as effective as a higher dose for someone who has a lower BMI. This is because tribulus seems to affect blood flow to muscular parts of the body, not fatty deposits.