Trichopus zeylanicus

Trichopus Zeylanicus is a berry and plant that is referred to as Kerala Ginseng. It does not have much evidence behind it at this time but appears to be a performance enhancer, Adaptogen, and aphrodisiac as well as generally healthy.

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Trichopus zeylanicus (of the family Trichopodaceae) is a herb from India, Malaysia, and Sri Lanka. It has been used historically by the Kani tribe in India, which uses this plant for its purported anti-fatigue effects.

It shows performance enhancing properties and may act as an aphrodisiac as well. A few in vitro studies also suggest that it may protect the body and DNA from various forms of oxidation.

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Also Known As

Arogyappacha, Kerala Ginseng


Things to Note

  • Aphrodisiac component appears to be fat soluble
  • Performance increasing may not be time-sensitive

Aphrodisiac properties were noted (in mice) at 200mg/kg bodyweight a day, and performance enhancing properties were noted at 250mg-500mg/kg bodyweight a day (again, in mice). These mice studies lead to estimated human doses of:

  • 1,100-2,700mg for a 150lb person
  • 1,400-3,600mg for a 200lb person
  • 1,800-4,500mg for a 250lb person

Table of Contents:


Edit1. Source and Composition

1.1. General

Trichopus zeylanicus (of the family Trichopodaceae) is a herb from the areas of India, Malaysia, and Sri Lanka. It has been used historically by the Kani tribe in India (whom call it Arogyappacha), which uses this plant for its purported anti-fatigue effects.[1][2] It appears to possess adaptogenic properties, and may be considered an Adaptogen.[1] Trichopus Zeylanicus also has been referred to as a Ginseng compound before (although not belonging to the Panax ginseng family) and is referred to as the Ginseng of Kerala (or Kerala Ginseng).[3]

Claims from the Kani tribe in regards to this herb state that the berries (bioactive portion) can gain enough energy to go days without food, and 1-2 berries can preserve youth, vitality, and prevent decline of the body.[4][1]

1.2. Composition

Trichopus Zelanicus, as a herb, contains:

  • An unnamed glycopeptide, possibly causative to the adaptogenic effects and found in the ethanolic fragment[1]
  • Sulfhydryl compounds at 2.09 ± 0.31 µg /mg[5]
  • NADH at 13.06 ± 3.16 ng/mg[5]
  • Unnamed polyphenols at 43.33 ± 6.21 µg/mg[5]


Edit2. Exercise and Performance

2.1. Physical Performance

In mouse tests (young and old), 250-500mg/kg Trichopus zeylanicus added to the feed was able to improve physical performance.[6] Similar effects have been seen in mice with doses ranging from 12.5-100mg/kg bodyweight of the ethanolic extract of the plant, where Trichopus at 12.5mg/kg bodyweight was roughly as effective as 125mg/kg bodyweight Ashwagandha, and doses ranging from 25-100mg/kg bodyweight were significantly more effective than Ashwagandha in preventing the decline in motor control and attenuating a rise in fatigue after exhaustive swimming (with subsequent physical testing immediately after).[1] When assessing physical performance in the aforementioned swim task (swimming until fatigue), Trichopus Zeylanicus was able to increase swim time by 40.33% (12.5%) to 103.47% (100mg/kg) whereas Ashwagandha at 125mg/kg was only able to increase time to fatigue by 38.85%.[1]

The mechanism of action by which it increases performance seems to be independent of adrenaline-mediated mechanisms.[6] The effects seen may be secondary to anxiolysis (reducing Anxiety) and the adaptogenic effects.[1]

Preliminary evidence suggests it is a potent performance enhancer, although whether this is inherent increases in performance or just secondary to a reduction in anxiety in the test animals is not known. It appears to be more potent than Ashwagandha, which is relatively impressive


Edit3. Intestinal Interactions

One study in mice using charcoal as a fecal marker noted that Trichopus Zeylanicus may reduce gastrointestinal motility (the speed of bowel evacuation).[7]


Edit4. Oxidation

Trichopus Zeylanicus has been implicated in being able to exert anti-oxidant, anti-lipid peroxidation, and anti-lipoxygenase effects and protect DNA from oxidation by reactive oxygen species.[5][8] The anti-oxidant effects are outperformed by an equal dose of Ganoderma lucidum while Trichopus Zeylanicus possesses more anti-lipid peroxidative effects.[5]


Edit5. Inflammation

Trichopus Zeylanicus is able to reduce inflammation as measured by edema after carrageenan injection, and was not significantly different than Ashwagandha in this regard.[1]


Edit6. Neurology

6.1. Anxiety and Stress

Trichopus Zeylanicus is touted as an adaptogenic compound able to reduce stress.

One study conducted in mice measuring both inflammation (as a response to exercise) and gastric ulceration (as a response to stress) noted significant attenuation when Trichopus Zeylanicus was fed at 12.5-100mg/kg bodyweight ethanolic extract; reducing 100% ulceration rates in the control group to 82.04% (12.5mg/kg) to 41.95% (100mg/kg) with dose-dependent effects.[1] These effects were slightly more potent on a per weight basis relative 125mg/kg bodyweight Ashwagandha used as an active control, which suppressed levels to 59.26% of control.[1] Trichopus was also able to dose-dependently reduce rectal hypothermia, a biomarker of stress, and all doses were slightly more effective than Ashwagandha.[1]

6.2. Aphrodisia

Trichopus Zeylanicus appears to have aphrodisiac properties in male mice through a fat soluble component at 200mg/kg bodyweight.[9]


Edit7. Safety

Two tests (performed by the same researchers) and one by another research group note that the LD50 value was greater than 3g/kg bodyweight[1][3][2] and that consumption of up to 3g of this herb (and 100mg of the ethanolic extract) for up to 15 days showed no observable abnormalities.

References

  1. Singh B, Gupta DK, Chandan BK. Adaptogenic activity of a glyco-peptido-lipid fraction from the alcoholic extract of Trichopus zeylanicus Gaertn. Phytomedicine. (2001)
  2. Singh B, et al. Adaptogenic activity of glyco-peptido-lipid fraction from the alcoholic extract of Trichopus zeylanicus Gaerten (part II). Phytomedicine. (2005)
  3. Sharma AK, et al. Adaptogenic activity of seeds of trichopus zeylanicus gaertn, the ginseng of kerala. Anc Sci Life. (1989)
  4. ‘AROGYAPPACHA’ (TRICHOPUS ZEYLANICUS gaerin), THE ‘GINSENG’ OF KANI TRIBES OF AGASHYAR HILLS (KERALA) FOR EVER GREEN HEALH AND VITALITY
  5. Tharakan B, Dhanasekaran M, Manyam BV. Antioxidant and DNA protecting properties of anti-fatigue herb Trichopus zeylanicus. Phytother Res. (2005)
  6. Tharakan B, et al. Trichopus zeylanicus combats fatigue without amphetamine-mimetic activity. Phytother Res. (2006)
  7. Pushpangadan P, et al. Further on the pharmacology of trichopus zeylanicus. Anc Sci Life. (1995)
  8. Cherian E, et al. Free-radical scavenging and mitochondrial antioxidant activities of Reishi-Ganoderma lucidum (Curt: Fr) P. Karst and Arogyapacha-Trichopus zeylanicus Gaertn extracts. J Basic Clin Physiol Pharmacol. (2009)
  9. Subramoniam A, et al. Aphrodisiac property of Trichopus zeylanicus extract in male mice. J Ethnopharmacol. (1997)

(Common misspellings for Trichopus zeylanicus include trikopus, tricopus, trichopus, zaylanicus, zaylanikus, zeylanikus)

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