Gokhru: Health Benefits, Uses, Nutritional Value & Dosage

Commonly known by a plethora of names, gokhru or puncture vine is a type of herb that has been widely used in the Siddha, Ayurveda, Unani, Kashmiri and traditional Chinese medicine. It has been a definite part of the natural medicine field, for thousands of years. It is used as a [1]  general tonic, rather like a cure to various health problems. In each medicinal field where gokhru is used, that is Chinese and Indian, the herb has varied uses. The plant as a whole is used in traditional medicine.

gokhru image

Today, the ancient herb is widely recognized for its ability to restore as well increase the testosterone levels. It is used around the globe due to the amazing benefits the herb possesses. The herb is usually used in the form of [2]  powder, pill or liquid extract which is obtained from drying the gokhru fruit. Read on to know about the benefits and uses of the ancient herb, that is making its place in the current day health scene.

Nutritional Value Of Gokhru

According to the study conducted by Shail, Kumar, and Tripathi on the effect of gokhru as a health supplement for pregnant women, the nutritional value of gokhru powder is as follows.

100 grams of gokhru powder has 73.40 Kcal of total energy, and a minute percentage of fat (0.52 grams).

  • 15.9 grams carbohydrates [3]  
  • 1.3 grams protein
  • 14.2 grams vitamin C
  • 59 grams calcium, and
  • 19.92 micrograms total flavonoids.
gokhru nutrition

Health Benefits Of Gokhru

From erectile dysfunction to improving heart health, the advantages of the ancient herb are limitless.

1. Enhances libido

The most talked about the benefit of the herb is its ability to treat low libido. From ancient times, gokhru has been used to enhance the libido in both [4]  men and women. By treating the infertility problems in a natural way, it stimulates your body's natural hormone and aids in the production as well as the maintenance of the testosterone levels. The steroidal saponins called [5]  terrestrosins A - E, flavonoid glycosides and furostanol acts to improve the sperm quality and quantity in men and promotes ovulation.

2. Reduces inflammation

One of the significant benefits of the ancient herb is its anti-inflammatory [6]  properties. It helps in reducing the uterus inflammation, prostate gland disorders, and skin ailments.

3. Improves heart health

Gokhru is effective in the cholesterol levels in your body, thereby help reduce the risk of any heart ailments. Being antibiotic and antitumour in nature, the herb aids by reducing the stroke risks, blood sugar levels as well as the blood pressure levels. The herb improves your heart health by lowering the dangers and risk factors that could cause [7]  heart diseases. Studies have revealed a significant reduction in the level of the bad LDL cholesterol, suggesting that the consumption of the herb can protect your blood vessels from any damages.

Also read15 Amazing Herbs For The Heart

4. Delays ageing

As conferred earlier, gokhru increases the testosterone [5]  levels in your body in a healthy manner. This property of the herb is equally beneficial as it acts as an anti-ageing element as well. Regular consumption of gokhru limits the effects of ageing on your appearance. That is, it limits the onset of wrinkles, blemishes and muscular degeneration.

5. Treats erectile dysfunction

The steroidal saponins in the wonder herb are highly effective in treating a condition known as partial androgen deficiency in men. Individuals with this condition have [8]  erectile dysfunction, were in a study revealed that the consumption of gokhru improved their sexual satisfaction, ability to ejaculate, desire, and the overall sexual quality of life.

Also read: Ayurvedic Remedy To Treat Erectile Dysfunction In 2 Months!

6. Useful for women suffering from PCOS

Polycystic Ovarian Disease is commonly found in adults and young women. Females suffering from [9]  PCOS can have acne, irregular periods, weight gain, hair loss, and mood swings. In some cases, it can even lead to complications during pregnancy. Gokhru helps in treating the condition by eliminating the excessive water and decreasing the size of the cyst. Along with this, the herb helps by fighting glucose intolerance and increasing the exercise capacity.

7. Treats glucose intolerance

Regular consumption of gokhru is known to treat conditions such as hyperglycaemia. Being [10]  adaptogenic in nature, the herb helps treats glucose intolerance. An individual suffering from impaired glucose tolerance (IGT) can use the herb to deal with extreme thirst, loss of muscle mass, and extreme tiredness.

8. Lowers blood sugar

Research has revealed that the gokhru is effective in managing the blood sugar levels. Regular and directed consumption of the herb has shown to cause a significant reduction in the blood sugar level of individuals suffering from [11]  type 2 diabetes. The saponins in the herb are found to have a definite impact on reducing the sugar levels.

gokhru facts

9. Reduces urinary problems

Used as one of the best remedies to treat pain and other problems related to urine, the herb promotes the easy flow of urine. Gokhru treats the problem by soothing the [12]  urinary tract membranes and thereby preventing any bleeding. The rejuvenating properties as well as the lithotryptic activity of the ancient herb helps remove the unwanted toxins from your body and protects your body from urinary tract and bladder infections.

10. Acts a diuretic

The herb is used to treat kidney stones and urinary diseases. The diuretic property [13]  of the herb can help cure any diuretic ailments and bladder problems. By cleansing out the urinary tract, the herb helps in eliminating the excess of salt and water from the body, through urine.

11. Fights water retention

Being a [14]  natural diuretic, the herb helps remove the excess water content in your body. Consuming gokhru can help from having to suffer from swelling in the hands, legs, ankles and feet, as it reduces the excess amount of water lodged in the tissues and cavities.

12. Treats skin ailments

Consuming gokhru on a regular basis helps improve your skin quality from within. The healing properties of the herb can restrict the onset of acne and breakouts. It is actually used for the internal and external treatment of skin ailments such as [15]  eczema, allergic skin conditions, and psoriasis. It is also used to treat hives, wounds, skin inflammation, itchiness, and skin eruptions.

13. Improves brain function

The gokhru herb can regulate the levels of serotonin that influences the emotional and mental state of an individual. This is due to the presence of the [16]  Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors (MAOI). The regular and controlled consumption of the herb can help treat relieve tension and stress, psychological imbalance, soothe headaches and Parkinson's disease.

14. Helps fight cancer

Assumed to be an effective form of natural cancer treatment, studies have revealed that the consumption of gokhru has caused the elimination of the [17]  radical cells and was able to block the spread of the cancer cells. An in vitro study has also pointed out that the herb is beneficial in limiting the onset of prostate and breast cancer.

15. Treats gallbladder problems

The astringent properties of the herb are useful in the treatment of gallbladder stones. Acting as an anthelmintic and a tonic, gokhru can eliminate the stones in the [18]  bladder.

Also read: 6 Health Benefits Of Eating A Plant-based Diet

Uses Of Gokhru

Beneficial for a variety of conditions, the ancient herb is used in the form of pills, powder and tonic. It is widely used in Chinese traditional medicine and Ayurveda. Gokhru is available in health stores, an should only be consumed under the instructions of a medical professional. It is used for [15]

  • enhancing athletic performance, 
  • increasing libido, 
  • reducing hair fall, 
  • reducing rheumatic pain, headache and stress, 
  • bed wetting, 
  • eye problems, 
  • piles,
  • relieving anxiety, 
  • flatulence, and 
  • coughs.

How To Consume Gokhru

The ancient herb is available in the form of tablets, powder and tonic. It can be bought from a drug store or pharmacies. However, it is advisable that you consult with your doctor before incorporating the medicinal herb into your daily diet and lifestyle.

Dosage Of Gokhru

The exact dosage of the herb is singularly dependent on the individual's age, health, and several other conditions. For [19]  sexual dysfunction, the dosage of the capsules can vary from 250-1,500 milligrams. However, as of now, there is only limited information pertaining to the exact and appropriate dosage of gokhru. Even though it is a natural product, it does not mean that the herb is entirely safe and harmless.

Side Effects Of Gokhru

Every product that has a plethora of benefits will inherently have some risk pertaining to it. Take a look.

  • It should not be used by women who have a history of [20]  uterine or breast cancer.
  • Men with enlarged prostate must avoid the long-term use of the herb as it can increase the prostate size and other disorders. 
  • Individuals with high blood pressure and diabetes should be careful in consuming the herb.
  • Breastfeeding and pregnant women must [21]  completely avoid using gokhru. 
  • It is advisable that children refrain from using the herb as it may have detrimental implications. 
  • If you are about to undergo surgery, stop the use of the herb 2 weeks prior as it can interfere with the blood sugar levels and blood pressure. 
  • In some people, it can cause restlessness, [22]  increased heart rate, nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, constipation and diarrhoea.
View Article References
  1. [1] Gauthaman, K., Adaikan, P. G., & Prasad, R. N. V. (2002). Aphrodisiac properties of Tribulus Terrestris extract (Protodioscin) in normal and castrated rats. Life sciences, 71(12), 1385-1396.
  2. [2] Gopinath, V., MubarakAli, D., Priyadarshini, S., Priyadharsshini, N. M., Thajuddin, N., & Velusamy, P. (2012). Biosynthesis of silver nanoparticles from Tribulus terrestris and its antimicrobial activity: a novel biological approach. Colloids and Surfaces B: Biointerfaces, 96, 69-74.
  3. [3] Shail, M. D., Kumar, N., & Tripathi, A. D. (2016). Nutritive Estimation of (Tribulus terrestris) Gokshura Ksheerpaka: A health supplement for pregnant women. International Journal of Home Science, 2(2), 349-352.
  4. [4] Bedir, E., & Khan, I. A. (2000). New steroidal glycosides from the fruits of Tribulus terrestris. Journal of natural products, 63(12), 1699-1701.
  5. [5] Wang, Z. F., Wang, B. B., Zhao, Y., Wang, F. X., Sun, Y., Guo, R. J., ... & Sun, X. G. (2016). Furostanol and spirostanol saponins from Tribulus terrestris. Molecules, 21(4), 429.
  6. [6] Chhatre, S., Nesari, T., Somani, G., Kanchan, D., & Sathaye, S. (2014). Phytopharmacological overview of Tribulus terrestris. Pharmacognosy reviews, 8(15), 45.
  7. [7] Samani, N. B., Jokar, A., Soveid, M., Heydari, M., & Mosavat, S. H. (2016). Efficacy of the hydroalcoholic extract of Tribulus terrestris on the serum glucose and lipid profile of women with diabetes mellitus: a double-blind randomized placebo-controlled clinical trial. Journal of evidence-based complementary & alternative medicine, 21(4), NP91-NP97.
  8. [8] Roaiah, M. F., El Khayat, Y. I., GamalEl Din, S. F., & Abd El Salam, M. A. (2016). Pilot study on the effect of botanical medicine (Tribulus terrestris) on serum testosterone level and erectile function in aging males with partial androgen deficiency (PADAM). Journal of sex & marital therapy, 42(4), 297-301.
  9. [9] Sandeep, P. M., Bovee, T. F., & Sreejith, K. (2015). Anti-Androgenic Activity of Nardostachys jatamansi DC and Tribulus terrestris L. and Their Beneficial Effects on Polycystic Ovary Syndrome–Induced Rat Models. Metabolic syndrome and related disorders, 13(6), 248-254.
  10. [10] Shivakumar, H., Javed, T., Prakash, T., Rao, R. N., Swamy, B. J., & Goud, A. V. (2006). Adaptogenic activity of ethanolic extract of Tribulus terrestris L. Journal of Natural remedies, 6(1), 87-95.
  11. [11] Li, M., Qu, W., Wang, Y., Wan, H., & Tian, C. (2002). Hypoglycemic effect of saponin from Tribulus terrestris. Zhong yao cai= Zhongyaocai= Journal of Chinese medicinal materials, 25(6), 420-422.
  12. [12] Usman, H., Abdulrahman, F. I., & Ladan, A. H. (2007). Phytochemical and antimicrobial evaluation of Tribulus terrestris L.(Zygophylaceae). Growing in Nigeria. Res. J. Bio. Sci. Medwell Journals, 2(3), 244-247.
  13. [13] Al-Ali, M., Wahbi, S., Twaij, H., & Al-Badr, A. (2003). Tribulus terrestris: preliminary study of its diuretic and contractile effects and comparison with Zea mays. Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 85(2-3), 257-260.
  14. [14] Singh, R. G., Singh, R. P., Usha, K. P., Shukla, K. P., & Singh, P. (1991). Experimental evaluation of diuretic action of herbal drug (Tribulus terrestris Linn.) on albino rats. J Res Edu Ind Med, 3, 19-21.
  15. [15] Adaikan, P. G., Gauthaman, K., & Prasad, R. N. V. (2001). History of herbal medicines with an insight on the pharmacological properties of Tribulus terrestris. The Aging Male, 4(3), 163-169.
  16. [16] Fatima, L., & Sultana, A. (2017). Efficacy of Tribulus terrestris L.(fruits) in menopausal transition symptoms: A randomized placebo controlled study. Advances in Integrative Medicine, 4(2), 56-65.
  17. [17] Kim, H. J., Kim, J. C., Min, J. S., Kim, M. J., Kim, J. A., Kor, M. H., ... & Ahn, J. K. (2011). Aqueous extract of Tribulus terrestris Linn induces cell growth arrest and apoptosis by down-regulating NF-κB signaling in liver cancer cells. Journal of ethnopharmacology, 136(1), 197-203.
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  19. [19] Gauthaman, K., Ganesan, A. P., & Prasad, R. N. V. (2003). Sexual effects of puncturevine (Tribulus terrestris) extract (protodioscin): an evaluation using a rat model. The Journal of Alternative & Complementary Medicine, 9(2), 257-265.
  20. [20] Gauthaman, K., & Ganesan, A. P. (2008). The hormonal effects of Tribulus terrestris and its role in the management of male erectile dysfunction–an evaluation using primates, rabbit and rat. Phytomedicine, 15(1-2), 44-54.
  21. [21] Antonio, J., Uelmen, J., Rodriguez, R., & Earnest, C. (2000). The effects of Tribulus terrestris on body composition and exercise performance in resistance-trained males. International journal of sport nutrition and exercise metabolism, 10(2), 208-215.
  22. [22] Wang, B., Ma, L., & Liu, T. (1990). 406 cases of angina pectoris in coronary heart disease treated with saponin of Tribulus terrestris. Zhong xi yi jie he za zhi= Chinese journal of modern developments in traditional medicine, 10(2), 85-87.
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    Read more about: nutrition benefits gokhru
    Story first published: Friday, January 4, 2019, 17:28 [IST]
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