Muirapauma
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MUIRAPAUMA  
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Botanical: Ptychopetalum olacoides
Family: Olacaceae (olax)
Other common names:  Muirapuama, Marapauma, Muira Puama, Muira Pauma, Marapuama, Marapama, Muiratam, Potent Wood

Muirapauma is said to be a powerful aphrodisiac for both men and women that has been used to correct erectile dysfunction and impotence in men and frigidity in women and is also believed to enhance arousal and prolong the sexual experience.  Muirapauma is also used to relieve central nervous system disorders, digestive disturbances and menstrual difficulties.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein by Herbal Extracts Plus is intended for educational purposes only. These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose, cure, treat or prevent disease. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

History:
Muirapauma, sometimes spelled Marapauma or Muirapuama, is a South American small tree (or bush, growing to only five feet in height) that is native to the Amazon rain forests and predominantly the northern and northeastern parts of Brazil.  It produces white flowers with a jasmine-like fragrance that is at once aromatic and pungent.  Muirapauma is one of the most active botanicals with a long history of traditional use as an energy tonic, general health improver and remedy for impotence and sexual insufficiency.  Amazon natives of the Rio Negro area have used it for centuries as an aphrodisiac for both men and women, and many different native populations have used it in a tea, which is slightly bitter (but can be sweetened) to enhance virility and impotence.  It is alleged to be effective against a multitude of symptoms.  In Notas Sobre Plantas Brasileires (1930), M. Penna claimed that Muirapauma treated disorders of the nervous system, impotence, as well as gastronintestinal and circulatory asthenia; and the herb has been in the Brazilian Pharmacopœia  since the 1950s.  In 1993, D. Schwontkowski wrote in his Herbs of the Amazon that Muirapauma not only treated impotence, but also frigidity, menstrual cramps and premenstrual syndrome (PMS).  One study at the UCLA School of Medicine determined that the roots of this Amazonian tree may improve both erectile function and sexual desire, and two French studies claimed that it improved libido and sexual function.  Muirapauma was brought back to Europe by explorers who noted its indigenous uses and aphrodisiac qualities, and it became part of herbal medicine in England, where it remains in the British Herbal Pharmacopœia  as a treatment for impotence, infertility, nerve pain, menstrual disturbances and dysentery.  Scientists began searching for the source of Muirapauma's efficacy in the 1920s, and discovered that it was rich in fatty acids, essential oils, plant sterols, triterpenes (including lupeol) and an alkaloid named muirapaumine.  Further research in the 1980s, went on to find sessquiterpenes, monoterpenes, alpha- and beta-pinene, camphene and beta-sitosterol, among many other active constituents.

Beneficial Uses:
Muirapauma is widely used as an aphrodisiac for both men and women, and some scientists say the herb increases testosterone levels, but that claim has not been clinically proven.  In the case of male sexuality, it is regarded as one of the best and most effective herbs to counteract erectile dysfunction and impotence.  In a paper presented to the International Congress on Ethno-pharmacology in 1990, in Strasbourg, France, a study of 262 patients who complained of erectile impotence or lack of libido noted that sixty two percent of those who received the herb claimed that the treatment had positive effects within two weeks and greatly improved their sex lives.  It is thought that when Muirapauma is used by sexually healthy men and women, it will enhance arousal and prolong the sexual experience.  The herb is believed to treat impotence in men and frigidity in women. South American tribal couples sometimes drink a Muirapauma tea before planned lovemaking to heighten sexual desire. The exact mechanism of the herb's efficacy is still under investigation, as the responsible constituents have not yet been isolated, but preliminary reports say that it works by enhancing both physical and psychological aspects of sexual function.

Muirapauma is believed to be a gentle tonic that strengthens, nourishes and restores the health of the central nervous system.  As such, the herb has been used in stress management and to treat mild cases of nervous exhaustion, depression and trauma. It is also thought to relieve neuromuscular weakness, nerve pain and physical and mental fatigue.

There are claims that Muirapauma acts as an astringent and has been useful in cases of diarrhea and dysentery.

Muirapauma is believed to benefit women's reproductive health and specifically alleviate menstrual cramps and premenstrual syndrome (PMS).

Muirapauma is thought to be a tonic for overall good health, ameliorating a weak constitution.  It is also believed to stimulate gastrointestinal function and relieve gastrointestinal disorders, including dyspepsia and ulcers.  There are also assertions that the herb helps to stimulate the circulatory system, and perhaps that is the reason why it has been used to treat baldness (it is included in many South American herbal blends as a treatment for male pattern baldness).  In 2003, Brazilian researchers reported that in lab tests the herb facilitated memory retrieval and may be beneficial for Alzheimer's patients - perhaps, again, a result of circulatory improvement.

Contraindications:
Currently, there are no known warnings or contraindications with the use of Muirapauma Herbal Supplement.

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