Mucuna pruriens is a legume known as “velvet bean” or “Cowhage” containing a phenolic compound in the seeds, L-Dopa (1).
Mucuna Pruriens Extract (L-Dopa 15%) Capsules Benefits
- Stress support (ref)*
- Promotes sexual health in males (ref)*
- Precursor to the neurotransmitter dopamine (ref)*
Mucuna Pruriens Extract (L-Dopa 15%) Capsules Mode of Action
Mucuna belongs to the sub-family Papilionaceae which includes 150 species of legumes. Mucuna is indigenous to tropical and sub-tropical areas and is regarded as a food source due to its viable proteins and digestibility. It was widely cultivated in eastern India and southern China and is cultivated for food use in Africa, Asia, America, and the Pacific Islands (1).
“Cowitch” and “cowhage" are the names the English gave to Mucuna for the species that have long hairs on the pod which cause stinging and itching by mucunain. The other species of Mucuna that have silky hairs which do not sting are known as “velvet bean” (1).
Mucuna Pruriens’s seeds contain L-Dopa which is a precursor to the neurotransmitter dopamine (1). L-Dopa, or Levodopa, is the main constituent of Mucuna, along with nicotinic acid, serotonin and the precursor 5-HTP, tetrahydroisoquinoline alkaloids, bufotenine, beta-carboline, mucunain (which causes itching when it comes into contact with skin), behenic acid, CoQ10, NADH (nicotine adenine dinucleotide), Inositol (D-chiro inositol and myo-inositol), selenium, iron, magnesium, and other saponins, flavonoids, anthraquinones, terpenoides, cardiac glycosides, and tannins (2).
Mature seeds contain between 3-12.5% L-Dopa, and the leaves contain only 0.5%(2). L-Dopa is a direct precursor of dopamine and can also be directly synthesized from the non-essential amino acid tyrosine, or indirectly from acidphnylalanine, an essential amino acid. Both amino acids are found in protein and tyrosine is the most abundant in food sources (3).
L-Dopa synthesizes dopamine in the body after ingestion through a rapid conversion in the peripheral tissue (2). Dopamine is a neurotransmitter which functions in a neuromodulatory system known as the dopamine system, consisting of dopaminergic pathways and cell groups. Dopamine is involved in motor control, executive functions, reinforcement and reward, motivation, and arousal. Other functions it influences include nausea, lacatation, and sexual gratification. Dopamine is also involved in some aspects of pleasure-related cognition (3).
Dopamine circulating in the bloodstream is small and can be produced by the digestive system or sympathetic nervous system. Dopamine receptors in the peripheral tissues may receive the dopamine or it can be metabolized and converted in norepinephrine and then released by the adrenal glands (3).
Mucuna Pruriens (L-Dopa 15%) Capsules Dosage
Pure Nootropics’ Mucuna Pruriens (L-Dopa 15%) Capsules provide 800 mg of Mucuna seed extract (min. 15% L-Dopa, naturally occurring) and 120 mg of L-Dopa per 2 capsules. Suggested use for adults is 2 capsules by mouth daily, or as directed by your healthcare practitioner.
Mucuna Pruriens (L-Dopa 15%) Capsules Side Effects and Toxicity
Mucuna is generally well tolerated, and most common side effects are gastrointestinal symptoms. Side effects may include headache, sweating, palpitations, diarrhea, flatulence, dry mouth, pruritus, rash, changes in urine color, and symptoms of psychosis have been noted (4).
If you are taking any medications, please consult your healthcare practitioner before beginning supplementation with Mucuna.
For further information, please see our References Tab above.
The references below are not meant to imply that any of our products treat, cure, or diagnose any disease or human condition. References to clinical studies and pre-clinical studies may use varying dosages and may not represent the dosages or subsequent results of products we sell; however, the references provided are pertinent to the subject supplement itself. References provided are intended for research and informational purposes only and do not represent the entire body of knowledge available on the subject(s) referenced; nor do they represent all possible outcomes associated with the subject(s) referenced including, but not limited to, adverse effects, precautions, or chemical interactions within the human body. The Content provided on this website is not intended to be a replacement for professional medical advice, treatment or diagnosis. Never ignore the advice of a medical professional or delay in attaining professional advice because of information or impressions you gather on this website. Choosing to rely on any information provided by the Content of this website is solely at your own risk. We encourage our audience to do their own research beyond the resources we have provided so your decision is as educated as possible.
• Stress support*
Shukla, KK, et al. “Mucuna Pruriens Reduces Stress and Improves the Quality of Semen in Infertile Men.” Evid Based Compelement Alternat Med, vol. 7, no. 1, Mar. 2010, pp. 137–44., doi:10.1093/ecam/nem171.
• Promotes sexual health in males*
Ahmad, MK, et al. “Effect of Mucuna Pruriens on Semen Profile and Biochemical Parameters in Seminal Plasma of Infertile Men.” Fertil Steril, vol. 90, no. 3, Sept. 2008, pp. 627–35., www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18001713.
• Precursor to the neurotransmitter dopamine*
Lampariello, Lucia Raffaella et al. “The Magic Velvet Bean of Mucuna pruriens.” Journal of traditional and complementary medicine vol. 2,4 (2012): 331-9.
1. Lampariello, Lucia Raffaella et al. “The Magic Velvet Bean of Mucuna pruriens.” Journal of traditional and complementary medicine vol. 2,4 (2012): 331-9.
2. “Mucuna pruriens.” Examine.com, published Sep 30 2013. Last updated Jun 14, 2018. https://examine.com/supplements/mucuna-pruriens/.
3. “Dopamine.” Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dopamine.
4. “Cowhage.” Foods, Herbs & Supplements. https://naturalmedicines.therapeuticresearch.com/databases/food,-herbs-supplements/professional.aspx?productid=1020#adverseEvents