Horny goat weed, scientifically called Epimedium grandiflorum, is an herb that’s part of the epimedium genus of flowering plants. It’s known by a number of other monikers, including bishop’s hat, barrenwort, fairy wings, and yin yang huo. Most species are found in China, with a few others in Asia and the Mediterranean. The herb has been a part of traditional Chinese medicine for centuries, wherein it is believed that horny goat weed is good for erectile dysfunction (ED), low libido, fatigue, and other conditions. 

Why Is It Called Horny Goat Weed?

As the story goes, a Chinese goat herder once had his flock graze on a field of this herb. Subsequently, he noticed a significant increase in sexual stimulation amongst his flock. The name stuck and so did its reputation. Today, it’s thought of as a natural aphrodisiac, believed to boost testosterone levels. Men widely use horny goat weed for ED and to improve their sexual drive. Its supplements are available as tablets, capsules, and powders.

How Does It Work?

For an erection to happen, the body signals chemical messengers in the blood, allowing the smooth muscle tissue in the penis to relax. This allows blood flow to these muscles and engorgement of the penis. One of the causes of erectile dysfunction is when an enzyme called protein phosphodiesterase type 5 (PDE5) inhibits the function of these chemical messengers, preventing an erection. Basically, if PDE5 is active in your bloodstream, it will interfere with a successful erection. Epimedium, or horny goat weed, appears to inhibit the activity of PDE5, much like Viagra and other drugs used to combat ED.

How Effective Is Horny Goat Weed for ED?

Technically, horny goat weed isn’t a scientifically established remedy for erectile dysfunction. However, a 2008 study found that icariin (the active ingredient in epimedium) is effective in impeding PDE5 in humans.

Are There Side Effects to Horny Goat Weed?

There are very few side effects to horny goat weed when it’s taken over a few months’ time. However, large amounts ingested quickly can result in spasms and breathing problems.

There isn’t a standard medically established dosage suggested when taking horny goat weed for ED. Supplements for it are usually available over the counter. If you’re taking some, you should follow the instructions on the package. If you have underlying medical conditions or you’re taking other drugs, it’s advisable to consult a doctor before combining it with horny goat weed. Generally speaking, if you have heart disease or hormonal sensitivities, you should avoid taking this supplement.


If you are looking to support your sexual drive and stamina, consider Howdy Handsome’s Men’s Vitality supplement. It’s a 100% organic blend of natural ingredients, including horny goat weed, saw palmetto, and other essential health boosters to help you reclaim control of your sex life. If you happen to have more questions about horny goat weed for erectile dysfunction, get in touch with us. We’re happy to talk to you.

Howdy, Handsome!

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