Men may seek alternative products to launch their libidos

Men may seek alternative products to launch their libidos

Considering the enormous market for erectile dysfunction (ED) drugs such as Viagra ($1.9 billion) and Cialis ($1.5 billion)—and these drugs’ stiff price—one might expect to see a rise in the demand for natural and traditional alternatives.

Indeed, in some cases, one does—but the sector suffers from disrepute and hucksterism. ED/sexual enhancement/libido-enhancing supplements for men are included in three categories that elicit the most warnings from FDA about adulteration with risky drugs (along with weight-loss and muscle-building categories).

Ginkgo, which works by dilating the capillaries, appears to have lost some of its earlier appeal, though this may also be due to recent studies in which gingko showed little effect on improving cognitive abilities, another condition for which it is anecdotally known as a remedy.

Up-and-comers in the male libido category, for which there seems to be a lack of current statistics, include tongkat ali, catuaba and muira puama. Less well known is that phosphatidylserine (PS) has been shown to increase testosterone levels. According to SPINS data, PS sales remain steady at around $2.8 million.

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