The herb Rhodiola, sexual performance

Q. What can you tell me about Rhodiola rosea? I’ve started taking it and found it really helps in dealing with fatigue and anxiety. Increased libido is an unexpected positive side effect, too. What should I know about possible downsides?

A. Rhodiola rosea is a plant native to the Arctic that is used in Chinese, Russian and Scandinavian traditional medicine. It is considered an adaptogen, allowing people to cope with stress and fatigue. A pilot study conducted at UCLA found that Rhodiola extract helped alleviate anxiety (Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, March, 2008).

Rhodiola might cause dizziness or dry mouth. In theory, it might increase the action of medicines or herbs that lower blood sugar or blood pressure and should not be combined with antidepressants. Its safety during pregnancy is unknown, so pregnant women should avoid it.

We did not find any research on the effect Rhodiola has on libido and we doubt it has been well studied. But your report suggests that perhaps it should be.

Get The Graedons' Favorite Home Remedies Health Guide for FREE

Join our daily email newsletter with breaking health news, prescription drug information, home remedies AND you'll get a copy of our brand new full-length health guide — for FREE!

  1. Abigail Lumbard

    To NR: Thanks to your question I looked more carefully at the label on my bottle of Rhodiola capsules. Also known as Arctic Rose, it comes from the arctic regions of eastern Siberia. It is an adaptogen – increases resistance and adaptation to stress. Helps to build stamina and vitality. sounds good.
    One a day to be taken early in the day “on a relatively empty stomach.” Not recommended for people with bipolar disorder. I’d search for reliable sources of herbal products.

  2. NR

    How do I find Rhodiola rosea at retail? Brand name? Stores?

What Do You Think?

We invite you to share your thoughts with others, but remember that our comment section is a public forum. Please do not use your full first and last name if you want to keep details of your medical history anonymous. A first name and last initial or a pseudonym is acceptable. Advice from other commenters on this website is not a substitute for medical attention. Do not stop any medicine without checking with the prescriber. Stopping medication suddenly could result in serious harm. We expect comments to be civil in tone and language. By commenting, you agree to abide by our commenting policy and website terms & conditions. Comments that do not follow these policies will not be posted.

Your cart

Shipping and discount codes are added at checkout.