What are the Most Common Tribulus Side Effects?

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  • Written By: L. Roux
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The most common tribulus side effects may include an upset stomach, nausea, and an enlargement of the prostate gland. Tribulus may affect hormone levels in the body, which could lead to mild side effects, such as a change in voice, or more serious ones including an increased risk of cancer. In general, tribulus is considered to be safe, however, and these side effects are usually limited to only a small percentage of users.

Tribulus, also referred to as Tribulus terrestris, may increase the amount of testosterone in the body. This in turn may lead affect the levels of other hormones, and may also stimulate the androgen receptors in the brain. These receptors regulate the DNA function in the body and play an important role in the regulation of gene expression. Some experts believe that changing hormone levels in this way could have serious and even fatal results, although no research has proven this.

The potential risk of cancer is also important when supplementing with tribulus. Tribulus contains 5-Dehydroepiandrosterone, which is also known as 5-DHEA. This steroid may increase the risk of cancer in the body. It is not recommended to consume large dosages of this steroid due to the risk of cancer associated with it.


Some individuals may experience nausea when taking tribulus. This may occur more often when taking a dose on an empty stomach or when using tribulus for the first time. Nausea is considered to be a very temporary side effect and should only occur at the beginning of a tribulus cycle. For many people, this may easily be corrected by consuming a meal when taking the supplement.

It has also been reported that some women who have taken this supplement experience a change in the tone of their voice. This is usually due to the change in hormones levels within the body, specifically testosterone. This is also one of the temporary tribulus side effects, and the voice usually returns to normal once the supplementation cycle has been discontinued.

In some rare cases, lung damage might occur as a tribulus side effect, although this is usually only seen when consuming the fruit of the Tribulus terrestris plant. Many experts advise that the fruit should never be eaten in raw form. The spiky fruit is the sources of the plants common names, including puncture vine and caltrop.

Although tribulus is usually considered to be a very effective supplement for bodybuilders, is not regulated by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA). This may also explain why only a limited number of tribulus side effects have been documented. Anyone considering this supplement should consult a medical professional before using it. Starting with a smaller dosage may help prevent tribulus side effects.


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