Side effects of Fadogia Agrestis on kidneys and liver are severe. Here is what science says

There are many consumers out there who are not aware of the potential side effects of Fadogia Agrestis.

The truth is, that consumers are misled by social influencers and celebrity doctors.

Even the infamous Dr. Andrew Huberman did not warn users of the negative effects of Fadogia on the kidneys and liver which may lead to safety concerns.

Many are willing to live with the minor side effects of Fadogia such as insomnia, nausea, and headaches without knowing the long-term damage to vital organs such as kidneys and liver.

This article deep dive into the severe side effects of Fadogia, how it may affect your kidney and liver functions, and whether Fadogia supplements are safe for daily consumption.

SUMMARY

Overview

Fadogia Agresits, Fadogia cienkowskii, Fadogia homblei and many other species of Fadogia flowering plants come from the same family, i.e Rubiaceae. Fadogia is a native plant from Nigeria and Fadogia roots are believed to treat various diseases and used as a natural aphrodisiac for men.

Regardless of the Fadogia species, taking Fadogia Agrestis or Fadogia Cienkowskii has the same level of risks to your kidney and liver as both contain the same phytochemicals and bioactive ingredients. 

For instance, Fadogia Homblei is known to cause gousiekte, a cardiotoxicosis of ruminants characterised by heart failure without any early warning signs four to eight weeks after ingestion. The endophytic bacteria found in most Fadogia species in Africa is deemed toxic and unsafe even for animals.

In recent years, Tongkat Ali and Fadogia are taken together as daily supplements, which many believe may boost testosterone, enhance muscle strength and improve men’s fertility. However, users should be aware of the side effects when taking Fadogia, or when combining Fadogia Agrestis with Tongkat Ali and other supplements.

Fadogia (Credit: West African Plants

Is Fadogia Agrestis safe?

A recent animal study in July 2023 by a group of scientists from the Pharmacology and Toxicology Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences University of Jos, Nigeria showed that Fadogia caused severe inflammation of the kidneys and death of liver tissues after 40 days.

The result of this study showed that Fadogia is toxic to the liver and kidneys at a Human Equivalent Dosage (HED) of 607 mg, which raises safety concerns when used as a daily supplement. As the liver and kidney damage may not exhibit any early symptoms, users are cautioned against using Fadogia Agrestis supplements long term or at high dosages.

With a growing list of adverse side effects with a strong possibility of toxic damage to the liver and kidneys based on 2023 toxicology study, Fadogia Agrestis supplements by Dorado Nutrition, Momentous, aSquared Nutrition, Salbinet may not be safe for consumption as it exceed 600mg per serving. US health experts, nutritionists and doctors are advising patients not to use Fadogia supplements due to high-risk toxicity on liver functions and kidney damage.

We concluded that Fadogia Agrestis may be unsafe for most individuals. We recommend looking at alternative herbs (eg: Tongkat Ali) until the safety of Fadogia has been conclusively proven.

Regardless of which Fadogia brands you take, Fadogia Agrestis extract may contain other types of Fadogia species that are known to be toxic, deadly, and even harmful. Due to the nature of the unregulated herbal industry, traces of highly toxic Fadogia Homblei and Fadogia cienkowskii species can be found in most Fadogia Agrestis supplements.

With increased concern on cellular and testicular toxicity of Fadogia, users should avoid or stop taking Fadogia supplements regardless of the Fadogia species or extract used. Actively promoted Fadogia by notable health personalities such as Dr. Huberman should not be used as a recommendation or endorsement that Fadogia is safe for everyone. 

Major side effects 

  • Liver – degeneration and death of tissue (necrosis) 
  • Kidney – chronic inflammation

Minor side effects of Fadogia Agrestis

  • Nausea
  • Headaches
  • Vommitting
  • Loss of vocal chords
  • Affects sleep
  • Skin irritations

What are common side effects of Fadogia Agrestis?

Common side effects of Fadogia include nausea, headaches, jittery and vomiting which may be tolerated by some users. However, severe side effects of Fadogia Agresits on liver, testes and kidney are highly toxic. Testicular function damage (Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 2008), necrosis due to death of liver tissues (Scientific African Journal, 2023) and potential disruption of the ordered lipid bilayer of the plasma membranes of the hepatocytes in the liver (Journal of Human Experimental & Toxicology, 2009) are amongst severe side effects of Fadogia Agrestis that are considered harmful, unsafe and dangerous for men. In addition, kidney inflammation caused by Fadogia may lead to chronic kidney disease (CKD) which is deemed as toxic as evidenced in the in-vitro study published in 2023.

Users with liver issues or those who have been consuming alcohol are exposed to higher risks of liver damage. And you should avoid taking Fadogia Agrestis or Fadogia Tongkat Ali supplement as hepatocytes play a vital role in contributing to liver inflammation.

Does Fadogia affect liver or kidneys?

Yes, a recent study conducted by scientists from the University of Jos, Nigeria reported severe inflammation of kidneys and death of liver tissue (necrosis) based on 50 mg/kg, 100 mg/kg and 200 mg/kg of body weight after 40 days.

The animal study on Fadogia’s effect on the liver and kidney confirms the extent of the damage as the study was conducted as part of a toxicology and safety assessment published in the Scientific African in July 2023.

Source: Effect of oral administration of Fadogia cienkowskii Shweinf. (Rubiaceae) ethanol root extract on some semen parameters, testes, epididymis, liver and kidney of male albino rats (Scientific African Journal, Volume 1, July 2023)

In the following sections, we shall deep-dive into the extent of the liver and kidney damage caused by Fadogia extract.

Effects of Fadogia on liver

The study showed that the albino rats treated with 50 mg/kg of Fadogia extract showed ballooning necrosis (death of tissue cells), while rats treated with 100 mg/kg extract showed massive tissue degeneration (necrosis), and rats treated with 200 mg/kg of the extract also showed further ballooning necrosis.

The study suggests strong evidence of the damaging side effects of Fadogia on liver at low dosages, causing death of body tissue in liver (i.e necrosis) which cannot be reversed.

Photomicrograph showing the effects of Fadogia on liver tissue. Source: Sciencedirect (Scientific African Journal, July 2023)

Necrosis occurs when too little blood flows to the organ tissue and when large areas are affected, it is known as gangrene. The outcome of liver tissue analysis of rats suggests long-term use of Fadogia may cause gangrene, with a high risk of liver failure.

Effects of Fadogia on kidneys

Further investigation from the toxicology study conducted by the Toxicology Department of the University of Jos Nigeria in 2023 showed a massive presence of inflammation of cells in the kidneys of albino rats caused by 50 mg/kg bodyweight of Fadogia Agrestis root extract. This confirms that Fadogia causes permanent damage to the kidneys at both low and high dosages.

The negative effects of Fadogia Agrestis are more pronounced as the higher dosage of 100 mg/kg also showed a massive inflammation of red blood cells within the tissue and a reduction in interstitial spaces as shown in the photos below.

Photomicrograph showing the effects of Fadogia on kidney cells. Source: Sciencedirect (Scientific African Journal, July 2023)

Safety Review of Fadogia Agrestis Supplements

Our analysis of the best-selling Fadogia Agrestis supplements in the US raise safety concerns due to high concentration of Fadogia extract which exceeds the safety threshold limit based on the cellular toxicity liver and kidney study published in July 2023.

Here is a list of the strongest and most Fadogia Agrestis supplements in the market today.

Best Selling Fadogia Agrestis Supplements. But is it safe?

 

Fadogia Agrestis Supplement

 

Fadogia
Extract (Per Serving)

Is it safe?

Salbinet Tongkat Ali Fadogia Agrestis

 

1,400mg

·       Exceeded safety limit.

·       High risk of liver and kidney damage

 

aSquared Nutrition Fadogia Agrestis

 

1,000mg

·       Exceeded safety limit.

·       High risk of liver and kidney damage

 

DoubleWood Fadogia Agrestis Supplement

 

600mg

·       Unsafe for long term use

·       Risks of liver and kidney damage

 

Dorado Nutrition Fadogia Tongkat Ali Supplement

 

600mg

·       Unsafe for long term use

·       Risks of liver and kidney damage

 

Momentous Fadogia Agrestis Huberman Stack

600mg

·       Unsafe for long term use

·       Risks of liver and kidney damage

 

Based on our initial assessment, Salbinet Fadogia Agrestis and aSquared Nutrition Fadogia supplement contains the highest concentration of Fadogia extract (1,400mg and 1,000mg respectively) that exceeds the safety limit, increasing the likelihood of high risk of liver tissue damage and kidney inflammation.

On the other hand, best-selling DoubleWood Fadogia Agrestis, Momentous Huberman Fadogia Stack and Dorado Nutrition Fadogia Tongkat Ali supplements contain high levels of Fadogia extract at 600mg per serving, which may not be safe for long-term use.

There are higher risks associated with Fadogia Agrestis if you are diagnosed with acute kidney diseases or unhealthy liver due to prolonged alcohol consumption.

As reference point in our safety review, severe inflammation of kidneys and liver tissue death can occur at 50mg/kg body weight of Fadogia Agrestis, or at 607mg of Human Equivalent Dose (HED) after adjusting to human weight.

FDA warnings:

FDA has not issued any safety warnings on the liver toxicity and long-term kidney damage of Fadogia despite growing concerns by scientists. Since it is not in the banned list, you may still buy and use Fadogia Agrestis supplements at your own risk.

FAQ: User Guide

Get more insights on Fadogia’s side effects on kidney and liver, safety and toxicity.

Are there benefits of Fadogia Agrestis?

There may be small incremental benefits of taking Fadogia Agrestis such as libido boost, sperm motility or even testosterone increase as claimed in past studies. However, the downside from severe toxic side effects far outweighs the health benefits of Fadogia. In addition, the health benefits and efficacy of Fadogia Agrestis have not been well established due to limited research studies compared to other well-researched herbs such as Tongkat Ali, Ashwagandha and Panax Ginseng.

Does Fadogia Agrestis affect kidney function?

A study conducted by Yakubu et.al published in 2008 showed that Fadogia Agrestis extract at doses of 18mg/kg, 50mg/kg and 100mg/kg produced significant increase in serum uric acid, creatinine, sodium ions, calcium ions and potassium ions which may lead to chronic kidney disease (CKD). Increase in serum acid found in the kidney caused by Fadogia Agresis may cause gout in users, i.e a painful form of arthritis that is closely related to chronic kidney disease (CKD).

In addition, the same animal study on Fadogia Agrestis showed significant changes in the kidney function after 21 days, indicating glomerular and tubular dysfunctions in the nephrons (i.e filtering units in the kidneys). According to a research published in the US National Institute of Health (NIH), progression of glomerular and tubular disease are clinically defined by a persistent reduction in glomerular filtration rate (GFR) that results in chronic kidney disease (CKD) and may lead to end-stage kidney disease (ESKD).

Can I take Fadogia everyday?

According to a toxicity study on Fadogia by a group of African scientists, the results suggest that it is not safe to consume Fadogia daily for more than 40 days. An animal study on Fadogia in July 2023 showed chronic inflammation of the kidney and permanent damage of liver tissues at 50 mg/kg body weight after 40 days.

Does Fadogia have severe side effects?

The most severe side effects caused by Fadogia based on the latest 2023 study were massive inflammation of the kidney and death of liver tissue cells due to necrosis. These damaging side effects may cause organ failure and the severity of it should be taken seriously.

Does Fadogia damage tissue cells?

Yes, the latest study in 2023 by a group of Nigerian scientists confirms that Fadogia causes necrosis – an irreversible cell injury (caused by inflammation) and subsequent death of tissue cells in the liver and kidneys.

Does Fadogia cause liver failure?

Yes, a recent 2023 study on 50 mg/kg bodyweight of Fadogia showed strong evidence of degeneration and death of tissue cells in the liver of albino rats after 40 days. This suggests long-term consumption of Fadogia may cause further deterioration of liver function that may lead to liver failure.

Is Huberman recommended Fadogia dosage safe?

Dr. Andrew Huberman’s recommendation of 400 mg of Fadogia Agrestis should not be viewed as safe as a recent study published in the Scientific African journal in 2023 reported that Fadogia caused massive inflammation of the kidneys and death of liver tissues at 50 mg/kg, 100 mg/kg and 200 mg/kg of Fadogia extract.

As the long-term kidney and liver failure from continuous consumption of Fadogia Agrestis cannot be detected early, users are advised to consult the nearest doctor before taking Fadogia supplements.

Is 600mg of Fadogia safe?

600 mg of Fadogia is relatively toxic and may damage both the kidney and liver. A recent Fadogia toxicity study published in the Scientific African journal in July 2023 showed a negative effect to kidneys and liver at 50 mg/kg bodyweight, or a Human Equivalent Dose (HED) of 607 mg for an adult weighing 75 kg.

Is Fadogia safe when taken in low dosage?

A recent study in 2023 showed that Fadogia produces adverse effects on the kidney and liver as low as 50 mg/kg body weight, which equates to 600 mg of Human Equivalent Dosage (HED). Taking Fadogia at a low dosage below 100 mg daily may still produce chronic inflammation of the kidneys and liver damage in the long term.

Should you combine Fadogia and Tongkat Ali together?

Fadogia is known for its damaging side effects on the liver and kidneys as reported by the study published in the Scientific African in July 2023. Therefore, is advisable not to take any form of Fadogia-Tongkat Ali supplements to protect against any possible liver and kidney damage.

Is Fadogia Tongkat Ali safe?

Fadogia-Tongkat Ali supplements or mixing Fadogia and Tongkat Ali may cause severe inflammation of the kidney and death of liver tissue (necrosis) due to negative effects from Fadogia as published in the latest study in July 2023.

Users are cautioned against mixing Fadogia and Tongkat Ali which may cause permanent damage and failure of both liver and kidneys.

Please consult your nearest doctor or healthcare for advice before consuming Fadogia-Tongkat Ali supplements.

Does Fadogia Tongkat Ali effect liver?

The addition of Fadogia as an active ingredient found in most Fadogia Tongkat Ali supplements may have detrimental effects on the liver caused by necrosis (death of liver tissue) as reported in a toxicology study published in the Scientific African Journal in July 2023.

On the other hand, Tongkat Ali has an opposite reaction and may not cause any liver damage as reported in many toxicology studies.

What is a safe dosage for Fadogia Agrestis?

There are insufficient human clinical studies or toxicology studies to suggest a safe daily dosage range for Fadogia Agrestis. Dosage recommendations between 500 mg – 1,000 mg by Huberman or unqualified scientists should not be viewed as safe as the recent 2023 animal study showed chronic inflammation of kidneys and death of liver tissue can occur from taking Fadogia at 600 mg daily.

What is the safety limit of Fadogia Agrestis?

The safety limit of Fadogia Agrestis has not been established in any conditions based on limited research and toxicology tests on humans. Studies showed that severe inflammation of kidneys and liver tissue death can occur at 50mg/kg body weight of Fadogia Agrestis, or at 607mg of Human Equivalent Dose (HED).

Is Momentous Fadogia safe?

Momentous Fadogia Agrestis supplement comes in 600 mg per serving which is a relatively high dosage that may exceed the safety toxicity limits. A recent study in 2023 showed chronic inflammation of the kidneys and liver damage at 50 mg/kg body weight of Fadogia, i.e 600 mg of Human Equivalent Dosage (HED) of Fadogia.

Parting Thoughts

Experts from the Botanical Institute concluded that Fadogia may not be safe for most individuals. Furthermore, our analysis showed that most Fadogia supplements are not safe at any dose. The latest toxicology study in 2023 further confirms the extent of the damage to your kidneys and liver, on top of testicular damage and other toxic risks.

Many US-health experts and doctors are now advising consumers to stay away from Momentous Fadogia and Dorado Fadogia Supplements mainly due to safety concerns and toxic damage to liver functions and kidneys.

While you may not experience any visible side effects of Fadogia, the long-term adverse effects on your liver and kidneys are irreparable. 

It is best to avoid Fadogia Agrestis rather than live a slow death with unforgivable consequences in the future.

Author

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: 

The content published on this website is for educational purposes and should not be viewed, read, or seen as a prescription or constitute any form of medical advice. We recommend you consult your nearest GP or doctors before consuming Tongkat Ali or any products which contain Tongkat Ali. For further information, kindly refer to our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) for more information.

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16 Responses

  1. Your saying 50mg/kg that’s a huge does much more then 607 grams for and adult your math is way off. Let alone 100mg/kg. 50mg/kg means 50mg per kilogram so 90 kilo person that’s a 4500mg dose !

  2. This article and/or the study is completely flawed.
    According to the article, the study was conducted at “50 mg/kg, 100 mg/kg and 200 mg/kg,” assuming a person weighs 70kg, that would mean they would be taking at minimum 3500mg! A 538% increase over the measly 600mg recommended daily.
    Please let me know if I’ve got something wrong.

  3. Finally someone exposed the shocking truth behind Fadogia. I tried Fadogia Agrestis supplement before it is notorious for giving me headaches and purging. I stopped taking Momentous Fadogia supplement immediately after diagnosed with kidney issues after being advised by my doctor. I was lucky the NHS UK doctors are quite well versed in diagnosing the kidney symptoms due to herbal intakes, especially when you are taking it consistently. It can reflect in your kidney test reports, as your urine will indicate whether your kidney and liver are in health condition. So by all means, please avoid taking Momentous Fadogia or any Fadogia Agrestis supplement. It does not matter if you are buying Fadogia on Amazon US, or anywhere – it is still filled highly toxic impurities!

    1. We share the same sentiment on Momentous Huberman Fadogia supplements. That are escalating unreported cases of taking Fadogia on Reddit. Users are cautioned against buying Fadogia extracts on Amazon, more so if the extracts are not clinically tested on humans under controlled environment (or using placebo controlled groups). At high dosages, these supplement may be toxic when taking it more than four weeks. It is better to avoid taking supplements that are known to affect your liver or kidneys.

    2. i started experiencing sudden painful headaches yesterday after a few days of taking the momentous fadogia agrestis supplement. although I can’t say 100% it was the cause, i will stop taking it now after reading this. thanks for doing this research

      1. There are bad reviews on Momentous Fadogia Agrestis supplement. Common user reported complaints are headaches, nausea and severe vomitting. Most Fadogia supplements sold in the US and UK are not safe as it should be due to the high dosage formulation and impurities. The source raw ingredients of Fadogia may contain dangerous and toxic Fadogia species that cannot be detected by lab tests or any other independent 3rd party toxicity tests.

      2. Momentous Huberman Tongkat Ali Fadogia has been thoroughly reviewed and investigated in recent reports but preliminary findings showed that there is a lack of purity of Tongkat Ali used as the extract is not clinically tested on humans. Huberman Tongkat Ali extract is sourced from Indonesia and experts are not convinced that it has the required level of eurycomanone to instigate any health benefits. In addition, Huberman Tongkat Ali Fadogia is not validated by scientists or any publications and may cause more harm on the kidneys and liver when consumed in high doses of more than 600mg daily. You may read more about Momentous Tongkat Ali product review here:

        https://akarali.com/momentous-tongkat-ali-review-is-huberman-recommended-tongkat-ali-supplement-worth-buying-and-does-it-even-work/

    1. Doublewood Fadogia may be toxic if it is consumed in high dosages or when taking it long term of more than 2 weeks. The highly unregulated herbal industry means that any Fadogia supplements may contain undetected impurities from other Fadogia species that are known to be highly toxic to animals and humans. If you have underlying kidney diseases or symptoms after taking Fadogia, it is best to check with your doctor before it is too late.

  4. The Botanical Institute made a good point and review about Fadogia. I hope EFSA and USFDA put a stop and ban Fadogia for good due to the toxicity regardless of the type of Fadogia species. Chances are, most Fadogia species including Fadogia Agrestis contains the same level of toxicity it contains the same bioactive ingredients! Some bright doctor from Stanford suggested Fadogia as a testosterone booster in 2021 was simply a huge scam! And my quick analysis showed that Fadogia is not even used by any athletes, sports men or even professional bodybuilders. We all should do our part to educate the public.

  5. I did not see in this report about the Fadogia if it was stem or roots extract, it’s already been said in other reports that the stem extract is highly toxic, but root extract is considerably safer. Definitely stay away from the products that say stem extract like the label on A Squared says stem extract. Be Ware!

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