The following section summarizes key properties of ANANTRA™’s Female ingredients as revealed by peer-reviewed scientific studies.
Eurycoma longifolia (Tongkat Ali)
Eurycoma longifolia (Tongkat Ali) is an endemic South East Asian plant with well-documented aphrodisiac, anti-diabetic & other properties in local traditional medicine (active substance: quassinoids).
- A clinical study performed with Tongkat Ali showed natural aphrodisiac properties and enhanced ergogenesis (increased muscle strength, higher testosterone) in the absence of toxicity in female senior adults1.
- Unlike some pharmaceutical products, Tongat Ali does not inhibit the main metabolic liver enzyme CYP3A4 or a variety of p450 metabolizing enzymes2; this is indicative of minimal potential to induce harmful drug interactions.
- Several positive animal studies are also supportive of a beneficial action of Tongkat Ali in libido enhancement and reproduction in the absence of estrogenic effects3-4.
Lepidium meyenii (Maca)
Lepidium meyenii (Maca) is a small plant native to the high Andes of Peru. The nutritional value of dried maca root is high, similar to cereal grains such as rice and wheat (active ingredients: proteins, carbohydrates, lipids, fiber & fatty acids).
- Maca reduces psychological symptoms e.g. anxiety and depression and improves sexual dysfunction in postmenopausal women independently of estrogenic and androgenic activity, in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical study5. Beneficial results against depression and in vascular functions have also been reported in postmenopausal women by other investigators6.
- Two double-blind, placebo controlled studies conducted at the Massachusetts General Hospital have shown that Maca root alleviates SSRI-induced sexual dysfunction, thereby having a positive effect on female libido7-8.
Crocus sativus (Saffron)
Crocus sativus is a flowering plant that is best known for the edible spice saffron (which is its main active ingredient).
- Saffron was shown to improve sexual function and quality of life (including depression) in clinical trials involving women9-10. Furthermore, Saffron was shown to reduce appetite leading in lower snacking tendency in a randomized placebo-controlled study of mildly overweight, healthy women11.
- Saffron exerted positive cognitive effects in Alzheimer’s disease12-13, depression or in post percutaneous coronary intervention patients14. In agreement with the above, a recent review of all published clinical studies showed that saffron may improve the symptoms and the effects of depression, premenstrual syndrome, sexual dysfunction, infertility, and excessive snacking behaviors in patients15.
Turnera diffusa (Damiana)
Turnera diffusa is a small shrub that produces small, aromatic flowers used in traditional South American medicine for its beneficial properties (active ingredients: flavonoids).
- Two double-blind placebo-controlled studies in 77 and 108 women respectively, indicated that Damiana-containing preparations enhanced sexual activity irrespective of menopausal status16-17. Importantly, these affects were mediated by estrogen-independent mechanisms18.
- Overall, Damiana has a well-documented aphrodisiac action19.
Angelica sinensis (Dong quai)
Angelica sinensis, known also as the female ginseng, is used in traditional medicine for its beneficial effects in various conditions including women’s health and menopause, fatigue and osteoporosis (active ingredients: flavonoids).
A clinical study with a herbal formulation containing Angelica sinensis reduced hot flushes during menopause20. Moreover, a randomized, double-blind, multiple-dose escalation study performed with an Angelica sinensis product showed it was better than placebo in controlling vasomotor symptoms of postmenopausal Chinese women21.
Angelica sinensis is the most commonly used herb in traditional medicine in China, Japan, Taiwan and Korea nowadays. It is believed to counteract women’s reproductive problems, such as dysmenorrhea, amenorrhea and menopause symptoms22.
Centella asiatica (Gotu kola)
Centella asiatica is a small, herbaceous plant used as a medicinal herb in Ayurvedic, traditional African and Chinese medicines for its aphrodisiac and anxiolytic properties (active ingredients: triterpenoids).
Several clinical trials have shown beneficial effects on various functions including anxiety related disorders, stress and depression23, age-related decline in cognitive function and mood disorder in healthy elderly patients24. Similar results were reported in another double blind clinical study in heathy patients25.
The role of Centella asiatica in the CNS has been characterized in various mechanistic studies showing effects in well known anxiety pathways; this argues for use of the herb as a natural anxiolytic and mood enhancer26.
Centella asiatica has also been implicated in treatment of menopause symptoms27 and wound contraction in diabetic patients28.
Cimicifuga racemosa (Black cohosh)
Cimifuga racemosa is a flowering plant used in traditional medicine for its analgesic, sedative, and anti-inflammatory properties (active ingredients: triterpenoids).
- Cimifuga racemosa has shown beneficial effects in treating menopausal symptoms & lack of sexual desire in women in multiple studies including breast cancer patients with treatment-induced menopause symptoms29-30, healthy women with often elevated weight31 and polycystic ovarian syndrome patients32.
- In agreement with the above studies, several meta-analyses comparing published clinical studies revealed a significant activity of Cimifuga racemosa in reducing menopause symptoms and improving sexual/physical health33-34. Uses for pain reduction by Cimifuga racemosa have also been reported in various conditions35.
Other ANANTRA™ Female ingredients
L-arginine is an essential amino acid, is safe and promotes sexual arousal in postmenopausal women with sexual arousal disorder36, possibly via the nitric oxidation pathway37.
Vitamin B3 (niacin), a well-known vitamin may have an emerging role in sexual medicine as well38.
Green tea is a known and widely used antioxidant.
Zinc, Selenium, Magnesium & Manganese are trace elements with known roles as anti-oxidants.
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15 J Integr Med. 2015 Jul;13(4):231-40.
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25 J Clin Psychopharmacol. 2000 Dec;20(6):680-4.
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28 J Med Assoc Thai. 2010 Dec;93 Suppl 7:S166-70.
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35 Black cohosh monograh, Health Canada
36 Arch Sex Behav. 2002 Aug;31(4):323-32.
37 Andrologia. 2012 May;44 Suppl 1:600-4.
38 J Nutr. 2004 Oct;134(10 Suppl):2873S-2879S; discussion 2895S.