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Benefits and Uses of Catuaba (Erythroxylum catuaba)

Catuaba is a tree native to the lands of Brazil, the word itself translates to refer to a tree that gives strength to the Indian in the indigenous Guarani language. Traditionally, the bark of the catuaba tree has been used in traditional South American medicine.

There are even ancient writings from the region showing the tree’s extract being used as an aphrodisiac. In more recent years, flavorings from the catuaba tree were used as an ingredient in the traditional British cola manufactured by Fentimans.

Health Benefits of Catuaba

The bark of the catuaba tree offers many homeopathic and holistic benefits. Intrinsic properties inherent to the tree include those of antioxidants, immuno-stimulants, vasodilators, and antibacterial features. These properties work together within the plant to assist with ailments related to fatigue and erectile and libido dysfunctions (by widening blood vessels which allow more blood flow to the penis).

Recent studies have shown that the catuaba bark can have a positive effect in aiding prostatitis. The latest technologies and scientists are working to patent the properties of the catuaba as a preventative measure against the transfer of HIV.

Using Catuaba

Throughout its life as a holistic medicine, the bark of the catuaba has been traditionally used as a tincture. The method that is proven most effective when taking this tincture involves diluting the catuaba in a small amount of water, and then adding a mere 4 milliliters of lemon juice to the mixture.

The acid in the lemon juices serves to release the beneficial tannins and alkaloids within the tincture, therefore making it more potent. The tincture may be purchased from Brazilian medicinal importers and health food stores, online, or made at home.

It should be noted that many pharmacies and nutritional stores sell a number of similar products under the catuaba name. While none of these have been proven as harmful, patients should double check to make sure that the product they are purchasing is the product they are intending to buy.

Image credit: maisonterre.net

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