Bigger. Harder. Longer. These are some of the words used to describe Male Extra, a male enhancement supplement from the United Kingdom that's said to “supercharge your sex life” with “no side effects.” Who doesn't want that! Big words aside, does it really work? In this review I'll look at the research on the ingredients in Male Extra -and show you the research – so you can best decide if it's right for you.
Male Extra Research
The Male Extra website (MaleExtra.com) hints that the product will provide:
- Bigger Harder Erections
- Improved Stamina
- Increased Sex Drive
- Multiple Orgasms
Bold words to be sure but hype aside, does Male Extra have any research to show it works? If it does, I can't find it. On the Science Page of the product website, there is a section called “How Fast Can I Expect Results” which depicts a graph which shows:
” the average increase in our customers’ erect penis size over a 6 month period of taking Male Extra every day.”
But, this does not seem to be a peer reviewed study. Also there are some things we are not told that I think are important. For example:
- Also how many people were in this “study?”
- How did they measure penis length – did men tell them (self reported results) or did the doctors measure it themselves?
- Did the men get the product for free or did they pay for it?
- Was there a placebo group?
The Science Page of the product website also mentions a clinical study of pomegranate and niacin but again, they don't tell us where this clinical study came from.
I tend to discount clinical studies if I don't know where they are published, so I can see them myself.
Therefore, I am forced to conclude that Male Extra -itself – appears to have no published, peer reviewed clinical studies. But what about it's ingredients? Might they have evidence? Yes, many do. So, let's look at those next.
Male Extra Ingredients
As I wrote this review, I'm not totally sure what the ingredients in Male Extra are. The MaleExtra.com website does list some ingredients, however a quick search of Google images turned up a picture of the box that contains additional ingredients and some that are not listed on the product website.
My guess is either the ingredients have changed or there is difference between the UK version and what's in the product in other countries.
So, that said let me first list the ingredients as they appear on the product website and then I'll list the ingredients I found online.
Ingredients Listed On Website
The product website (MaleExtra.com) lists these ingredients:
- Arginine 600 mg
- MSM 100 mg
- Creatine (amount not given)
- Cordyceps 25 mg
- Zinc 45mg
The website also states that Male Extra has pomegranate, containing 40% ellagic acid and niacin (they don't say how much niacin it has).
From these ingredients, I think I can understand the reasoning behind how Male Extra is supposed to work. I think they are trying to raise nitric oxide levels and maybe testosterone levels.
Nitric oxide (NO) is a gas that expands blood vessels. Increasing NO levels in the blood vessels of the penis might improve erections. Arginine can improve NO levels and so too can niacin.
There have been studies of arginine and erectile dysfunction (ED) that show in some men, it might help. Amounts research notes might help is about 5 grams per day. Taking 3 Male Extra tables per day only provides 1.5 grams per day.
Products I've looked at previously that also has arginine include:
- SeroVital ( anti aging)
- Force Factor (bodybuilding/male enhancement)
- P90X Recovery Drink (fitness/recovery drink)
See those reviews for more information.
Zinc might help testosterone levels if you are deficient in zinc. My guess is most men are not lacking in this mineral. The RDA for zinc in the US is about 13 mg per day. That's not much and is why I dont think most people are lacking in this mineral.
Creatine is popular in muscle building supplements and my guess here is that if creatine makes muscles stronger, it might make erections stronger. I'm not aware of any proof of this however. Searching the National Library of Medicine for “creatine erections” turned up no research.
MSM stands for Methyl sulfonyl methane and is popular in arthritis supplements. I've never seen any research on MSM and erections.
Just to double check, I searched the National Library of Medicine for “MSM erections” and saw no studies showing up.
Ingredients Listed On The Box
On the picture of the Male Extra box I found online, 3 capsules contains these ingredients:
|Amount||Percent Daily Value|
|Pomegranate (70% ellagic acid /whole fruit)||500 mg||N/A|
|Muira puama||15 mg||N/A|
|Epimedium sagittatum||50 mg||N/A|
|Tongkat ali 20:1 extract ( root)||50 mg||N/A|
|Maca (Lepidium meyenii) root||25 mg||N/A|
|Cordyceps mycelium||25 mg||N/A|
|Omega 3 fatty acid||25 mg||N/A|
Let's now look at the research on these ingredients and see what's up.
Taking 3 capsules of Male Extra contain 500 mg of pomegranate, obtained from the whole fruit and this is said to be standardized to contain 70% ellagic acid.
Pomegranate juice has been getting a lot of attention, mostly because of ads for POM Wonderful Juice
Pomegranate has been studied for a variety of reasons ranging from heart disease, obesity and improving strength. Let's just look at the evidence showing it helps erection issues because that is what Male Extra is marketed for.
In a 2007 study titled Efficacy and safety of pomegranate juice on improvement of erectile dysfunction in male patients with mild to moderate erectile dysfunction: a randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind, crossover study, pomegranate juice did not appear to significantly improve erections compared to placebo in 53 men who had erection problems.
If you read the study, you will see that some men in the study did report erections improved however, it did not reach “statistical significance.” I feel this should be followed up by a larger study to better see what might be going on.
Pomegranate does contain antioxidants and this might help blood vessels in the penis work better. But, does that translate into better erections? Theoretically, maybe, but right now I don't think we have the proof needed to say this with certainty.
For what its worth, the study above used POM Wonderful.
The label for Male Extra states that the pomegranate in the product is made up of 70% ellagic acid. This is a compound found in many foods from walnuts to strawberries. Pomegranate has it too.
Is it 40% or 70% ellagic acid? I saw both mentioned when I wrote this review.
Ok, great but does ellagic acid help erections? Since I had not seen this stuff in a male enhancement supplement before, I got curious. So, I searched the National Library of Medicine for:
- ellagic acid erections
- ellagic acid testosterone
I found no studies that specifically looked at whether ellagic acid helped erections. As for testosterone, I saw no human research.
This is ironic given that pomegranate is said to be one of the “active ingredients' In Male Extra.
This is also called “Potency Wood” and its scientific name is Ptychopetalum olacoides. I searched the National Library of Medicine for:
- Muira puama erections
- Muira puama testosterone
- Ptychopetalum olacoides erections
- Ptychopetalum olacoides testosterone
I found no studies on people or lab animals. While I'm not aware of any research on muira puama and erections, I did find one study of a product containing muira puama, called “Herbal VX”, however this study involved women, not men.
The more common name for this herb is “Horny Goat Weed.” This name alone makes it a common choice for for male enhancement supplement ingredients. In other supplements, it simply is called “epimedium.”
One of the compounds in epimedium is called icariin. There is some evidence that this compound is a PDE5 inhibitor. The enzyme PDE5 is the same enzyme that Viagra and other similar drugs inhibits. PDE5 stands for Phosphodiesterase Type 5.
For this reason some say icariin is the active ingredient in horny goat weed.
While this sounds encouraging, what I find lacking are studies where scientist give icarrin (or horny goat weed) to people to see if it actually helps erections.
I see rat studies.
I see test tube studies.
But I don't see any people studies.
Because there a link between ED and heart disease, I wonder if horny goat weed might be in Male Extra for another reason – homocysteine levels.
Homocysteine is a compound that is linked to dementia and appears to be linked to heart disease. There is some evidence that horny goat weed reduces homocysteine levels. Could this be why its in the product? I honestly can't say.
Other products I've reviewed at that also contained epimedium include:
See those reviews for more information.
In other supplements, this stuff is listed as it's scientific name, Eurycoma longifolia. Yet another name for this herb is “Long Jack.” Taking 3 capsules of Male Extra provides 50 mg of this herb.
One study from 2006 noted that Tongkat ali raised testosterone in men who had low levels to begin with. How much did they use – 200 mg for one month.
In this 2013 study, 200 mg of tongkat ali was found to raise testosterone in older men with low testosterone levels.
In this 2014 study of older men and women, 400 mg of tongkat ali raised testosterone in both men and women.
Conversely, Tongkat ali did not work in this 2014 study where young, healthy men took 400 mg for 6 weeks.
Based on these studies, I think If tongkat ali is going to work I think, it would work best in men who already have low testosterone levels.
These Tongkat Ali products all have at least 400 mg.
Other products I reviewed previously that also contained this ingredient include:
- Provalen (arthritis supplement)
- Triverex (male enhancement supplement)
- Andro400 (testosterone booster)
- Syntheroid (testosterone booster)
See those reviews for additional information.
I'm not aware of any evidence that flaxseed plays a role in erections, testosterone levels or improving sexual performance in men.
The scientific name for maca is Lepidium meyenii. Three capsuels of Male Extra provides 25 mg of Maca. In terms of raising testosterone, everything I see on Maca involves lab rats.
One study from 2002 noted that 1500 mg to 3000 mg of maca improved sexual desire in men, age 21-56 after 8 weeks of use. I also located a 2003 study on this issue but it appears to be the same as the 2002 study, just published under a different title.
Other products I've looked at that contained Maca include
See those reviews for more information on Maca.
This is an amino acid. The “L” in the name (L Methionine) is science talk that means the molecule is “left handed.” Trivia aside, I'm not aware of any research on methioine helping erections, raising testosterone levels or improving levels of sexual desire. Given it's potential to raise homocysteine levels, I wonder why it's in a product marked to older men.
Other products Ive looked at that listed methionine include:
See those reviews for more insights on methionine.
Most products I see just call this “cordyceps.” While traditionally it referred to a fungus that grew on caterpillars, my guess is that most of the cordyceps these days is made in a lab. I often see cordyceps in exercise supplements.
Since sex is a type of physical active, I guess I can understand why it would be in a male enhancement product. Three capsules of Male Extra prvide only 25 mg of cordyceps.
I'm not aware of any evidence cordyceps raises testosterone levels or raises sexual desire. Things I previously looked at that also contained cordyceps include:
See those reviews for more information
Omega 3 Fatty Acid
I can't tell which omega 3 fatty acid Male Extra has. Is it omega 3 fats from fish oil (EPA and DHA)? Is it omega 3 fats from flax seed (ALA)? They don't tell us. If anyone knows the type contained in Male Extra let me know and I'll be glad to update this part of my review.
Who Makes Male Extra?
When I went to the Male Extra website (MaleExtra.com) I did not see a company listed. When I looked at Whois.com (which gives information about other websites), I found that the website was registered in 2009 by supplement company called Advanced Health Limited, located in Glasgow Scotland.
I then called the US/Canada customer support number for Male Extra and spoke with a friendly woman with a refreshing Scottish accent. She told me that the company that makes Male Extra is called Bauer Nutrition.
Bauer Nutrition a company based in the United Kingdom. Their website is BauerNutrition.com and their are located at 10 Payne Street, GLASGOW, UK, G4 0LF. Here is what it looks like. On their website, they list this contact phone number: 1 646 568 9679.
When I looked up Bauer Nutrition in Whois.com I found that their website was registered in 2012 by yet another company called NuroPharm. NuroPharm / Advanced Health Ltd market a variety of supplements that may be familiar to people in the UK including:
When I tried to go to NuroPharm.com it did not appear to be working although I did find this address: 81 Griva Digeni Avenue MARINOS Court: Larnaca Larnaca 6043 CY.
My guess (I could be wrong) is that NuroPharm is the parent company of both Advanced Health Ltd and Bauer Nutrition. I stopped my investigation of the companies at this point and provide this information for those doing their own research.
How To Contact Male Extra
The product website lists these contact numbers
- US/Canada: 866-975-2466
- UK: 0208-914-8439
- International calls: +44-208-914-8439
They also list this email address for customer support: [email protected] For faster service, I recommend calling first if that is possible. When I called them, they answered the phone very quickly, were friendly and answered all my questions.
Does Male Extra Enlarge The Penis?
There is no reason to believe that any of the ingredients in Male Extra make an erect penis bigger or longer than what it normally is when it is erect. Claims that any supplement can do this should be viewed with skepticism.
Who Is Male Extra For?
When I looked at the product website, I saw men who appear to be in their 20s and 30s. If you are that person, you don't need any male enhancement supplement. These types of products are often marketed to men in their 50s, 60s and beyond.
This marketing to younger men is a trend I've noticed before. The only reason I can think of for showing younger men in male enhancement supplement ads is to “cast a bigger net.” In other words, by appealing to more men, this means potentially more customers.
If you are a man in his 20s or 30s and is having problems in the bedroom, I don't think supplements are the answer. Please speak to your doctor about this. There maybe something else going on.
Male Extra Side Effects
I'm not aware of any side effects of Male Extra when I wrote this review. My guess is that in healthy people, it's likely safe to use. That said, here are some topics that I believe are worth mentioning for those who are not “healthy.”
- If you have any health issues especially heart disease, high blood pressure or low blood pressure or kidney problems, speak to your doctor first. Show your doctor/pharmacist the list of ingredients and ask if these are ok to take given your health and medications.
- Stop taking Male Extra – and other supplements – at least 2 weeks before surgery.
- If you are taking any blood thinner medications, speak to your doctor first.
- Don't combine Male Extra -or similar supplements – with Viagra or other erection drugs.
- If you have elevated homocysteine levels, speak to your doctor.
- People who have dementia should speak to their doctors.
Natural Ways To Improve Erections
For the man reading this who might be wondering if there are natural ways to improve erections, the answer is yes. Let me mention some of these ways to get you started as you do your own research.
1. Lose weight. Even losing 10 pounds might improve erections.
2. Exercise regularly. Exercise naturally raises nitric oxide levels and also helps keep blood vessels “rubbery” allowing them to more easily expand in response to nitric oxide. See my review of SuperBeets for more info on nitric oxide.
3. Do cardio before strength training. There are some studies showing that performing aerobic exercise before strength training may lead to higher testosterone levels over a longer period of time. For more on this, see the review at my personal website.
4. Eat more fruits and vegetables. One of the most interesting things about the China Study Book was that eating more fruits and vegetables was noted to reverse erection problems.
5. Reduce stress. This is much easier said than done but erection issues might also be due to depression or other emotional/ psychological stress in our lives. Some drugs may cause erection problems too.
As always, do speak to your doctor too. Remember, heart disease may start in the small blood vessels of the penis. Because of this, I think having this conversation with a doctor may be one of the smartest things a man can do.
Does Male Extra Work?
Male Extra appears to have many of the same ingredients I've seen in other male enhancement supplements. While there is some logic to many of the ingredients, I believe the amounts are less than what research shows might work.
Could I be wrong? Of course. It's possible all the ingredients work together better than those I've highlighted here. To know for sure, we would have to do real clinical studies to see. If those clinical studies are ever published, I will be glad to update my review.