What Are the Health Benefits of Horny Goat Weed?

In Chinese medicine, the horny goat weed plant is often used to treat sexual dysfunction in women.
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  • Written By: Amanda R. Bell
  • Edited By: E. E. Hubbard
  • Last Modified Date: 08 August 2014
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Horny goat weed, also known as epimedium, is an herb that has been used for centuries to treat a wide variety of health problems. One of the most notable benefits of this herb is its possibility of treating erectile dysfunction in men. In traditional Chinese medicine, it is often used to treat sexual dysfunction in women. It is also believed to have a positive effect on seasonal allergies, can potentially treat cardiovascular issues, and may play some role in the treatment of other health problems.

Epimedium is perhaps best known for its use in treating erectile dysfunction. One of many natural treatments for male sexual dysfunction, horny goat weed is believed to aid in achieving and maintaining an erection, as well as helping to prevent premature ejaculation. When it comes to herbs used for these purposes, horny goat weed is often at the top of the list; however, as of 2011, there are very few studies that support this claim. Due to this, there is no definitive dosage information or set treatment plan to achieve these benefits with this herb. Traditional Chinese medicine practitioners and herbalists, however, almost unanimously tout the health benefits of this herb.

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In addition to treating male sexual dysfunction, horny goat weed is believed to act as an aphrodisiac in women. It is thought that the herb can not only help a woman to feel a desire for intimacy, but also make the entire experience more enjoyable. As with the claims of this herb treating erectile dysfunction and premature ejaculation in men, these supposed health benefits of horny goat weed are not currently backed by science, and it may be unsafe for pregnant or lactating women to take this herb.

Although this herb is best known for its uses in the bedroom, it is also believed to help keep seasonal allergies at bay. This can include reducing watering eyes, sneezing, and other sinus issues when these symptoms are the result of an allergic response to pollen in the air. Often referred to as hay fever, this herb can potentially replace the use of traditional allergy medications if seasonal allergies are relatively mild.

Traditional Chinese medicine also often uses horny goat weed to treat a variety of cardiovascular and other health issues. It can potentially treat hypertension, reducing one’s risk of stroke, heart attack, and other serious illnesses. In addition to these health benefits, there are some that claim this herb can help to improve liver and kidney function, which can potentially play a role in improving a wide variety of health problems.

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Sporkasia
Post 3

A Chinese goat herder stumbled on the benefits of the horny goat weed after his goats ate some of the plants, and the herder noticed the animals became more amorous than usual. That's how the plant received its name. At least, that's how the legend goes. Who knows?

Animandel
Post 2

Some of he epimedium (horny goat weed) plants have the prettiest flowers. I don't know exactly what the herbs do in terms of health benefits, but I know plenty of people who take the herb for high blood pressure and sexual dysfunction.

These people say the herb works for them. I can't say whether there is a real healing agent to the plant or whether the users just believe it is working.

Drentel
Post 1

I have never used a horny goat weed supplement, but I read a news article that compared the herb to other impotency prescription drugs and the goat weed compared favorably. The reporter ended his article by writing that based on it's use throughout history and on limited research data horny goat weed is "probably" effective in treating some male sexual problems.

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