Current scientific evidence showed that the Tongkat Ali root extract may have a clinical effect on erectile function, but how effective is Tongkat Ali as a libido booster for men?
According to studies, Tongkat Ali’s mechanism of action is through its testosterone-inducing mechanism in the adrenal, pituitary glands and testes. This has a profound effect on men’s libido and general fertility.
In this article, we shall deep-dive into the effects of Tongkat Ali on erection, sperm motility, sperm concentration, and sexual desire.
We shall look at scientific-based studies and clinical trials to investigate if Tongkat Ali does improve Erectile Dysfunction (ED) and boost men’s libido.
- A 6-month study by the researchers from the University of Santa Catarina Brazil in 2021 showed that daily consumption of Tongkat Ali with a 60-minute exercise 3 times a week brings the most improvement in ED, sexual satisfaction and desire.
- Randomized clinical trials in the past showed that Tongkat Ali may lead to improvements ED in males with Androgen Deficiency Aging Males (ADAM), higher scores in the overall Erectile Function IIEF (P < 0.001), sexual libido by 14%, with sperm motility at 44.4%, and semen volume at 18.2% at the end of a 12-week treatment.
- Medical specialists Dr. Rena Malik, an urologist from the University of Maryland Medical Center in the United States, reaffirmed that Tongkat Ali may improve ED based on scientific research publications.
- Most clinical trials on Tongkat Ali between 2010-2020 has shown aphrodisiac enhancing properties and improvements in sexual functions, that is safe to be consumed by adults.
Effects of Tongkat Ali on men's libido and fertility
Tongkat Ali is touted as one of the best natural libido supplements to improve men’s sexual health in areas such as sperm motility, sperm concentration (volume), erection, and overall sexual satisfaction.
Tongkat Ali contains eurycomanone that activates Luteinising Hormones (LH) that stimulates the Leydig cells in your testicles to produce free testosterone that helps your reproductive system whilst resulting in a better libido.
Whilst Tongkat Ali should not be used as a complete cure for ED, here are some of the improvements that one can expect from consuming Tongkat Ali based on various published research studies in the last two decades:
Tongkat Ali Benefits on Men’s Libido & Fertility
- Sperm motility: +11% to 44.4%
- Sperm concentration: +18.2% to 65%
- Sperm morphology: +94%
- Erection hardness: +39.3%
- Erection time: +102% to +162%
Results of these independent studies on men’s libido and fertility were conducted using Physta® Standardized Tongkat Ali extract which delivers maximum gains due to high potency and efficacy.
We will share more insights from the latest research-based evidence to validate Tongkat Ali’s ability to combat symptoms related to ED and improve men’s sexual health.
Here is our Tongkat Ali assessment based on empirical evidence from clinical trials on key parameters related to men’s libido and fertility.
- Erection Time: Length of time where erection is felt after consuming Tongkat Ali (minute)
- Erection Hardness: Scores based on Erection Hardness Scale (EHS) (Score 1 – 4)
- Sperm Morphology: Size and shape of man’s sperm (Score 4 – 14)
- Sperm Concentration: Sperm count (million per ml)
- Sperm Motility: Ability of sperm to move efficiently
Can Tongkat Ali cause a long-lasting erection?
Yes, Tongkat Ali may cause an erection as evidenced by clinical trials and past studies involving more than 500 male test subjects. There is sufficient compelling evidence that Tongkat Ali has a positive effect on libido for men with androgen deficiency.
Here are some facts:
Tongkat Ali’s Effect on Erection
- The Erection Hardness Scale (EHS) showed 39% improvement in erection in patients consuming Tongkat Ali for 12 weeks.
- A Sexual Intercourse Assessment (SIA) showed 102% improvement in longer erection time in a placebo-controlled group study conducted by Kay Udani, involving 30 male test subjects consuming 200mg Tongkat Ali daily for 12 weeks.
- Test subjects also reported a significant increase of 162% in the elapsed time from erection perceived hard enough for penetration to withdrawal from partners vagina
Erection Hardness: Measuring the effects of Tongkat Ali
The effects of Tongkat Ali on erection are measured by the Erection Hardness Scale (EHS); a four-point scale used to assess Erectile Dysfunction (ED) by many medical professionals, thus providing a reliable measure of erection.
Tongkat Ali showed an improvement in erection hardness from 2.54 to a score of 3.54 (out of a maximum score of 4.0) after 12 weeks of consuming Tongkat Ali. This translates to 39% gains after 12 weeks.
Definition on Erection Hardness Scale (EHS)
- Score 4: Completely Hard & Fully Rigid
- Score 3: Hard Enough For Penetration
- Score 2: Not Hard Enough For Penetration
- Score 1: Large But Not Hard
Erection Time: Measuring the effects of Tongkat Ali
Whilst Tongkat Ali consumption caused a stronger erection, the same study also showed that Tongkat Ali makes you last longer.
Based on the Sexual Intercourse Assessment (SIA) survey on 30 male test subjects consuming Tongkat Ali for 12 weeks, the reported improvement was between 102% to 162%.
Here is the first SIA question that was asked to the patients who consumed Tongkat Ali during the test:
Here is the result before and after 12 weeks:
- Baseline on week zero: 0.44
- After the 12th week: 0.89
- Improvement: 102%
Here is the second SIA question that was asked to the patients who consumed Tongkat Ali during the test:
Here is the result after consuming Tongkat Ali for 12 weeks.
- Baseline on week zero: 7.47 minutes
- After the 12th week: 19.56 minutes
- Improvement: 162%
Latest research on Tongkat Ali’s efficacy in combating ED
There are hundreds of studies on Tongkat Ali’s ability to combat ED symptoms but we shall share the top and recent clinical trials in this article.
An independent study from University of Santa Catarina Brazil, published in 2021 showed that 200 mg Tongkat Ali (Eurycoma Longifolia) daily intake improved erectile dysfunction, sexual satisfaction, desire and testosterones level in a group involving 45 men over a period of 6 months.
The Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina (UFSC) is one of the best universities in Brazil and in Latin America. THE Golden Age University Rankings 2019 ranked USFC as the second best university in Brazil.
The study was conducted in a placebo-controlled groups – where test subjects were separated into four groups – G1,G2, G3 and G4. These groups were observed within an interval of 1 month, 4 month and 6 months period.
The group which consumes Tongkat Ali and regular exercise (i.e G4) showed a remarkable improvement in ED.
2-way RM-ANOVA for comparison of the sexual function domains of the four groups in the four moments of the study. (n = 38). BL – baseline; 1 month – after one month of intervention; 4 months – after four months of intervention; 6 months – after six months of intervention. G1: control + placebo; G2: control + Eurycoma longifolia; G3: concurrent training + placebo; G4: concurrent training + Eurycoma longifolia. AMS-S: sexual aspects of the AMS Scale
Consuming Tongkat Ali with regular exercises improve sexual desire and libido.
Tongkat Ali supplementation works best with regular exercises that help release and regulate testosterone. This improves your sexual desire and may potentially reduce ED-related symptoms due to age and hormone deficiencies.
What is androgen deficiency?
- Androgens (including testosterone) are the hormones that give men their ‘male’ characteristics.
- Androgen deficiency means the body has lower levels of male sex hormones, particularly testosterone, than is needed for good health.
- Causes of androgen deficiency include problems of the testes, pituitary gland and hypothalamus.
In the earlier study conducted by the University of Santarina, significant ED improvements were apparent when test subjects consumed Tongkat Ali with regular exercises during the 6-months observation.
International Index of Erectile Function (IIEF-5)
Group 2 (G2)
(200mg Tongkat Ali, with no training)
Group 4 (G4)
(200mg Tongkat Ali, with concurrent training, 3 times a week)
Can I Tongkat Ali improve my libido if I am overweight or obese?
Tongkat Ali is one of the best herbal supplements that may improve your libido if you are obese and suffering from ED symptoms due to low testosterone.
Facts on obesity & ED
- Studies have shown that BMI in the range 25-30 is associated with 1.5 to 3 times greater risk of ED.
- Physical activity showed greatest influence on ED for adults with high BMI
- For overweight adults, you may need to work on restoring testosterone with Tongkat Ali for at least weeks before seeing any noticeable gains.
To improve erection or libido, the first step is to build a healthy testosterone level by consuming Tongkat Ali with a good set of exercises.
Here are some tips that you can use when taking Tongkat Ali to maximize gains associated with ED symptoms or to improve your libido.
Tips to Maximize Gains From Tongkat Ali:
- Take Tongkat Ali 400mg daily – 200mg an hour before exercise, and 200mg after exercise.
- Perform high-intensity workout/cardio for a minimum of 30 minutes, at least 3 times per week.
- Perform weight training with moderate weights, 3 times per week for maximum impact.
- Repeat the above for a minimum of 6 weeks.
- For faster gains, consume Tongkat Ali without ON/OFF cycle if you are overweight.
Kindly refer to our daily dosage guide for more info.
Tongkat Ali Dosage: Libido, erection, sperm concentration and motility.
If you are seeking to improve your libido, sperm concentration and desire, the general recommendation is to consume between 200mg to 300mg Tongkat Ali daily for 4 to 12 weeks.
- It is recommended to consume the most potent Tongkat Ali with higher efficacy to gain the most effect on men’s libido.
- Tongkat Ali with lower potency may require more time, or a higher dosage before it can deliver maximum erection or noticeable gains.
Scientists and researchers spend two decades analyzing Tongkat Ali to prove its efficacy in boosting libido, notably improvements in erection, sperm concentration and motility.
If you are using Tongkat Ali to combat ED or to improve sexual desire, here is a dosage guide:
Tongkat Ali daily dosage
Number of test subjects
Clinical Study & Research Conducted by
Results / Research findings
(men and women)
Dr. Jay K Udani
Dr. Annie George
Dr. Michael Pakdaman
Erection time: +161.8%
Erection hardness: +39.3%
Dr. Alice Erwig
Dr. Melissa Carvalho
Dr. Andriea Pelegrini
Improvement in Erectile Dysfunction in Androgen Deficiency of Aging Males (ADAM)
Dr. Shaiful Bahari
Dr. Annie George
Dr. Wan Zahiruddin
Sexual libido: +14%
Sperm motility: +44%
Semen volume: +18.2%
Dr. Ismail Mohd Tambi
Dr. Kamarul Imran
Sperm concentration: +65.5%
Sperm morphology: +94.9%
Sperm motility: 11%
Does Tongkat Ali increase sperm count?
The above studies showed there are sufficient evidence to confirm that Tongkat Ali increases sperm concentration and sperm motility by 65% and by 11% respectively.
Sperm count is a measure of good health for men that increases your overall fertility. Here is a quick summary of the semen analysis by patients consuming Tongkat Ali during a 9 month observation.
Most of the research on Tongkat Ali has been independently conducted using placebo-controlled groups to analyze the effectiveness of Tongkat Ali in combating ED, sperm concentration, sperm motility and overall sexual desire.
Here are some brief insights:
- In a 6 month study with 109 men using Tongkat Ali showed significant improvement with higher scores recorded in the International Index of Erectile Function (IIEF) score (P < 0.001), sexual libido at 14%, SFA- with sperm motility at 44.4%, and semen volume at 18.2% by the 12th week.
- In another 9-month clinical trial Damai Service Hospital by Dr. Tambi and Dr. Henkel on infertility, 75 males consuming Tongkat Ali showed an improved rate of fertility owing to the increased rate of semen volume, increased concentration of sperm, increased sperm motility, and sperm quality.
- In another 12-week study by Medicus Research LLC, Northridge, California on a sample size of 26 men, a proprietary freeze-dried water extract of Tongkat Ali, Physta®, was examined for its effect on sexual performance. The result showed improvement in sexual scores; subjective libido scores increased along with increased hardness and erection time
- In another study conducted published at PhytoMedicine, the consumption of Tongkat Ali was seen to result in improved sexual libido, sexual stimulation, and performance.
Medical views on Tongkat Ali's efficacy to combat ED
Yes, there are many experts who developed views and opinions on Tongkat Ali in recent years. Dr. Andrew Huberman, Dr. Ismail Tambi, Professor Kerry Bone and Dr. Militello have developed growing interest in Tongkat Ali’s effect on men’s libido.
US-born urologist, Dr. Rena Malik from Maryland USA went deep into Tongkat Ali’s effect on men’s libido based on recent scientific studies.
Dr. Rena Malik is an Urologist at University of Maryland Medical Center and was named a “Top Doctor” in the specialty of Urogynecology and Urology by Baltimore magazine in 2020.
In her video, Dr. Rena explains the science behind Tongkat Ali in 3 areas: Erectile Dysfunction, Testosterone and Stress based on research publications out there.
According to Dr. Rena, Tongkat Ali offers 3-in-1 benefits, notably to improve ED from restoring testosterone and these are based on scientific evidence backed by clinical trials.
If you have watched her video, Dr. Rena commented that the maximum efficacy (i.e the potency) that you can gain from Tongkat Ali depends largely on the extraction method.
According to Dr. Rena Malik, Tongkat Ali with hot water root extract is more potent. In other words, that translates to higher gains to improve your erection and men’s libido.
You should be looking at Hot Water Root Extract which gives the highest potency
For Tongkat Ali to be effective on libido, do not use the conventional 200:1 or 500:1 Tongkat Ali.
The reality is, a higher extraction ratio in Tongkat Ali extract is not a potency marker and may not work to boost your libido or erection.
Read more about the relationship between Tongkat Ali potency, efficacy, and dosage before choosing the right product.
Freeze-dried water extraction technology such as US-patented Physta® offers superior potency with higher bio-active ingredients such as:
- 1.5% – 3% eurycomanone
- 48% glycosaponin
- 30% polysaccharide
- 22% protein
Physta® Tongkat Ali was co-developed with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and is the strongest Tongkat Ali in the market today.
Due to growing clinical trials, Tongkat Ali may be a potential alternative for improving ED, men’s fertility, and general support for a healthy endocrine system.
Compared to other herbs such as Fadogia or Panax Ginseng, Tongkat Ali is a clinically proven alternative that are certified by scientists and recommended by urologists and andrologists, particularly if you are diagnosed with hypogonadism.
- Leitão AE, Vieira MCS, Pelegrini A, da Silva EL, Guimarães ACA. A 6-month, double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized trial to evaluate the effect of Eurycoma longifolia (Tongkat Ali) and concurrent training on erectile function and testosterone levels in androgen deficiency of aging males (ADAM). Maturitas. 2021 Mar;145:78-85. doi: 10.1016/j.maturitas.2020.12.002. Epub 2020 Dec 10. PMID: 33541567.
- Ismail SB, Wan Mohammad WM, George A, Nik Hussain NH, Musthapa Kamal ZM, Liske E. Randomized Clinical Trial on the Use of PHYSTA Freeze-Dried Water Extract of Eurycoma longifolia for the Improvement of Quality of Life and Sexual Well-Being in Men. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2012;2012:429268. doi: 10.1155/2012/429268. Epub 2012 Nov 1. PMID: 23243445; PMCID: PMC3518798.
- Kotirum S, Ismail SB, Chaiyakunapruk N. Efficacy of Tongkat Ali (Eurycoma longifolia) on erectile function improvement: systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Complement Ther Med. 2015 Oct;23(5):693-8. doi: 10.1016/j.ctim.2015.07.009. Epub 2015 Jul 31. PMID: 26365449.
- Udani JK, George AA, Musthapa M, Pakdaman MN, Abas A. Effects of a Proprietary Freeze-Dried Water Extract of Eurycoma longifolia (Physta) and Polygonum minus on Sexual Performance and Well-Being in Men: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2014;2014:179529. doi: 10.1155/2014/179529. Epub 2014 Jan 12. PMID: 24550993; PMCID: PMC3914427.
- Skrypnik D, Bogdański P, Musialik K. Otyłość–istotny czynnik ryzyka zaburzeń potencji u mezczyzn Obesity–significant risk factor for erectile dysfunction in men. Pol Merkur Lekarski. 2014 Feb;36(212):137-41. Polish. PMID: 24720114.
Naressa Khan contributes regularly on AKARALI. As a researcher and investigative journalist, Naressa is all about creating, deconstructing, and reassembling meaningful content through words and facts. With this approach always in mind, she eagerly explores the nuances in life via the aspects of lifestyle, culture, travel, health, and wellness in Malaysia .
Our articles are third party reviewed by our panel of experts and medical advisors to ensure the facts are accurate and credible. These are validated against multiple source references which include but not limited to research studies, peer-reviewed journals, pre-clinical studies, clinical tests and other credible publications.
Our panel of medical advisors and experts are highly experienced in their individual fields. However, they do not provide any medical advice or recommendations arising from content published in this article.
Disclaimer: Content published in this article is not intended to promote any brands nor to provide any form of recommendations to purchase or consume medication, drugs or herbal supplement brands directly or indirectly. By reading this, the sole responsibility and decision lies on the reader to perform their own assessment and / or to arrive at an informed decision based on publicly available information. By reading the content published on this website means you are aware on the risks involved in purchasing any of the products or brands mentioned in this article. We highly recommend you and the readers to consult your nearest doctor before making any purchase from this website or any other websites or social platforms after reading this article.