Damiana use dates back to the time of the ancient Mayans of Central America and continues today for its supposed stimulatory and toniclike effects. Women are purportedly more highly affected by damiana then men, particularly when they use it for prolonged periods of time, says HERBS2000.com. There is not enough scientific information to confirm the efficacy of damiana for any of its uses. Consult your healthcare provider before using damiana medicinally.
Identification and Dosage
Damiana is also known as herba de la pastora, Mexican damiana and old woman's broom. According to Herbs2000.com, damiana leaves can be taken as an herbal tea or smoked like tobacco. Damiana can also be taken as a tincture or in pill form. The tablets or capsules are usually taken in doses of 400 to 800 mg 3 times daily, and the tincture is commonly taken in 2 to 3 mL doses 3 times a day.
Some proponents of alternative medicine believe that damiana produces enhanced energy, sexual stimulation and alleviates menstrual problems in women. Damiana is also used by women who believe it can restore their ability to achieve orgasm. According to Wisdom.com, damiana may be useful for relieving asthma, mild depression, anxiety and nervousness. Other purported uses include enhancing digestion and treating constipation.
No scientific studies have confirmed the beneficial health effects of damiana. Its value as an herbal remedy has continually been questioned, and it may have no physiological effects in humans, notes Herbs2000.com.
No side effects have been reported from damiana use. Damiana may be safe when used occasionally and in moderate amounts. However, large amounts of damiana may cause insomnia, headaches and liver injury.