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Puncture Vine - Nature's Viagra
Plant dubbed 'Nature's Viagra'
By Carol Harrington - Canadian Press
Calgary - Nature thought of it first. Puncture vine, affectionately called 'Nature's Viagra', is a common plant that proponents say may be as effective as the famous anti-impotence pharmaceutical.
'It really works', says Eric Wicik, 25, who took puncture vine drops to improve a sex drive temporarily lowered by strict fasting.
'I noticed an improvement after two days'.
Puncture vine -- so named because its sharp seeds can flatten bicycle tires -- grows wild throughout North America. Naturopaths or homeopaths prescribe an extract of it to treat impotency. Some bodybuilders also use it as a 'natural steroid'.
'It increases testosterone production', claims Edmonton botanist Robert Rogers, who owns an herbal centre. 'Studies found that in just five days of taking puncture vine, it increased testosterone levels by 30 per cent or more'.
Rogers cited a 1981 study by the Chemical Pharmaceutical Institute in Sofia, Bulgaria, of more than 200 men suffering from impotence. It found an increase in sperm production, survival rate and motility.
Other benefits cited in the study were increased immunity and self-confidence, lower cholesterol levels and generally better moods.
Puncture vine is usually listed on herbal bottles by its Latin name, Tribulus Terrestris, says Tom Chan, a researcher with Organica Health Products in Vancouver. It is often manufactured with a combination of other herbs, as are most herbal concoctions, and can be purchased in some drugstores and herbal shops, Chan says. Wild oats and plumtree berry extract are two other herbs that optimize testosterone levels, he claims.
Europeans, particularly Romanians, have been using puncture vine for more than 1,000 year, mostly as a muscle enhancer, he says. The drops can be used by either sex, Rogers says.
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