Fruits of Muira Puama tree - Ptychopetalum Olacoides syn. P. Uncinatum (Oleaceae)

Medicinal Use of Muira Puama – Ptychopetalum Olacoides syn. P. Uncinatum (Oleaceae)


Tree growing to 49 ft (15 m) with a gray trunk, dark brown leaves, white flowers, and orange-yellow fruits.

Habitat & Cultivation

Muira puama is native to Brazilian rainforests, especially the Rio Negro and Amazonas regions.

Part Used

Root, bark, wood.


Muira puama contains esters and plant sterols.

Medicinal Actions & Uses

Muira puama has long been used in Amazonian medicine as a tonic and aphrodisiac. Considered useful as an aid for impotence, it is thought to help with both physical and psychological aspects of the problem. It is also used to treat or prevent baldness. The bark is strongly astringent and is employed as a gargle for sore throats and taken in the form of an infusion in order to treat diarrhea and dysentery.

Related Species

Lirisoma ovata, another Brazilian tree, is also known as muira puama, but has quite distinct chemical constituents.