What is Turkesterone?
Turkesterone is an ecdysteroid (ECDY) which are steroid hormones found commonly in insects but can also be found in certain plant species. These are known as phytoecdysteroids. In plants, these groups of compounds are used to deter predators while in insects they help to regulate key processes such as moulting and metamorphosis or insect development. Few studies have been performed on Turkesterone, however there has been interest in ecdysteroids, especially 20-Hydroxyecdysone as having many potential anabolic and beneficial effects including affecting metabolism and growth.
Where Does Turkesterone Come From?
Turkesterone was originally derived from the Ajuga plant, also known as Bugleweed, Ground Pine or Carpet Bugle. However as previously mentioned, it can also be obtained from a wide variety of moulting insects and animals such as crabs and also in a wide variety of other plants including the Cyanotis Vaga plant which is common to the African continent.
As previously mentioned, few studies have been conducted on Turkesterone specifically as most of the studies have looked at a different ecdysteroid. What few studies of Turkesterone have shown that perhaps it might help promote lipid and carbohydrate metabolism as well as promoting growth in animals. While the effects were not large in effect, in bodybuilding as with animal nutrition, every little bit counts.
Turkesterone Benefits for Bodybuilding
If Turkesterone has positive effects on lipid and carbohydrate metabolism, it could be a very viable supplement to help with weight maintenance and fat loss. In terms of your generic ecdysteroid, there appears that the growth promoting effects were due to due to better nitrogen retention and therefore a better protein metabolism profile with reduced protein catabolism and increased anabolism. However, these results have not been translated to human studies.
Turkesterone Negatives & Side Effects
There doesn’t appear to be any serious side effects to Turkesterone use and few if any published toxicology studies. However, ecdysterone, another common ecdysteroid has a proposed lethal dose in mice of 6.4g-9g/kg of body weight depending on method of administration. The issue with ecdysteroids is that they are actually very easily metabolised in the body and thus it is thought that a large amount is required to offer the benefits mentioned above. Interestingly, low doses of around 0.02 ug/kg of bodyweight in animals have been shown to offer beneficial effects. Therefore more studies are required to be conducted to ascertain the safety of Turkesterone.
Turkesterone Recommended Doses & Ingredient Timing
There are no current dosing recommendations for Turkesterone at the moment nor are there recommendations for ingredient timing. It is best to be cautious with your dosages however and keep your dosages at a level of under 1g/kg of body weight. In fact, one recent study which used ecdysterones on resistance trained males only used a supplement containing 30mg consumed once per day in the morning.
Turkesterone is still a relatively novel ingredient used in supplements. However a few testosterone boosting supplement formulations (such as methoxy supplements) employ it as an ingredient. If you are looking for turkesterone, sometimes it can be found listed as ecdysterone or ECDY, so be sure to keep an eye out for these names too.
Turkesterone can be stacked well with other testosterone boosters, growth hormone boosters or estrogen blockers, but may also be used with fat loss supplements due to its possible ability to alter lipid and carbohydrate metabolism.1. Dinan L, Bourne P, Whiting P, Tsitsekli A, Saatov Z, Dhadialla TS, Hormann RE, Lafont R, Coll J. ‘Synthesis and biological activities of turkesterone 11alpha-acyl derivatives.’ J Insect Sci. 2003;3:6. Epub 2003 Feb 24.
2. Lafont R, Dinan L. ‘Practical uses for ecdysteroids in mammals including humans: an update.’ J Insect Sci. 2003;3:7.
3. Wilborn CD, Taylor LW, Campbell BI, Kerksick C, Rasmussen CJ, Greenwood M, Kreider RB. ‘Effects of methoxyisoflavone, ecdysterone, and sulfo-polysaccharide supplementation on training adaptations in resistance-trained males.’ J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2006 Dec 13;3:19-27.