Can Pine Bark Cure Erectile Dysfunction And Improve Libido?

Yes, Pine bark can help you overcome erectile dysfunction.


By helping you ‘get it up’ and ‘keeping it up’. 😊

How does Pine bark do this?

By helping you produce more nitric oxide, preserve your existing nitric oxide, and up your bloodflow.

However, Pine bark won’t typically boost your libido.

Let’s learn more about Pine bark.

Pine bark can help you overcome erectile dysfunction

Maritime Pine Bark (Pinus Pinaster)

Maritime pine bark is the bark of a tree called Maritime Pine, or Pinus Pinaster. This tree is an evergreen pine tree, growing 20-35 meters tall, and having a tree trunk with a diameter up to 120 cm, but often less than 50 cm. 

It is native to the western and southwestern Mediterranean region, but it has also been planted in many temperate regions around the world. 

Due to its rapid growth, it has even become an invasive and unwelcome tree in some regions, as it has overtaken native vegetation.

Pinus Pinaster is widely used for timber production in countries such as France, Spain and Portugal. It is also a popular ornamental tree, often planted in parks and gardens in temperate climates.

Maritime Pine Bark (Pinus Pinaster)

The bark of Pinus Pinaster, which is normally orange-red and thick, can have several health benefits.

The ingredients in Pine bark that produce the health benefits are called catechin, epicatechin, taxifolin, procyanidins, cinnamic acids and glycosides. 

One of the most important ones are the procyanidins.

Procyanidins are a class of what are called flavonoids, and it is thought that these procyanidins play an important role in the pine tree’s defense mechanisms against pathogens (bacteria, virus, or other microorganisms that can cause disease).

Procyanidins are also found in many other kinds of vegetation such as apples, cinnamon, cocoa beans, grape seeds, bilberry, cranberry, black currant, green tea, etc. 

The use of Pine bark for medicinal purposes goes back a long time. We know that it has been used for at least 2,000 years.

Jacques Cartier was a French explorer

Let’s look at a little piece of Pine bark history:

Jacques Cartier was a French explorer in the 1500’s. He was the first European to travel inland in North America, and he also claimed what is now Canada for France. 

In 1535, due to a very harsh winter, his ship got frozen in the St. Lawrence River (the river that runs through Montreal) for several months. 

As they ran out of food supplies, several of his crew members developed scurvy, a condition typically caused by nutritional deficiency, and particularly a lack of vitamin C. 

Many of his crew members got so sick that they died.

When the son of an Indian village chief observed this, he gave the crew a hot brew made of needles of the Thuja tree and Pine bark.

Indian made hot brew of Thuja tree and Pine bark

A few days after drinking this brew, the health of the crew members improved significantly. And shortly thereafter, they recovered. 

This brew contained large amounts of healthy substances such as vitamin C, antioxidants, flavonoids, procyanidins and phytochemicals, which were able to treat scurvy in the crew members.

Let’s understand how Pine bark can help you overcome ED.

How Does Pine Bark Help You Overcome Erectile dysfunction?

Pine bark is able to help you improve or cure your erectile dysfunction through the following pathways: 

  • By improving your nitric oxide production
  • As a potent antioxidant 
  • By its anti-inflammatory properties
  • By reducing glucose level (glycaemia) in the blood
  • By improving your LDL / HDL cholesterol balance
How Does Pine Bark Help You Overcome Erectile dysfunction?

Pine Bark Can Increase Your Nitric Oxide Production

The inner walls of your blood vessels are covered with cells called endothelial cells. Collectively, this layer is called the endothelium.

Inside your endothelium sit enzymes called nitric oxide synthase.

These enzymes produce nitric oxide. These are your ‘nitric oxide factories’.

Research studies (see below) have demonstrated that Pine bark is able to make this enzyme more efficient at producing nitric oxide.

So when nitric oxide synthase is able to produce nitric oxide faster, you will produce more of it.

This is how pine bark can improve your nitric oxide production.

Smooth Muscles Relax To Provide Bloodlfow

And why is nitric oxide so important?

Because nitric oxide is what enables your penis to go from limp to erect.

When your penis is flaccid, there is hardly any blood in it. In order for your penis to become erect, it needs to fill with blood.

What nitric oxide does, is to open up the blood vessels in your penis so that blood can flow into it, and fill it up. 

Without nitric oxide, it would practically be impossible to get an erection.

Pine Bark Is A Potent Antioxidant (Which Also Preserves Nitric Oxide)

Research studies (see below) have also shown that Pine bark is an effective antioxidant.

Pine Bark Is A Potent Antioxidant

Why are antioxidants good?

Because they destroy free radicals.

And why are free radicals bad?

Free radicals are ‘unstable’ molecules. They are unstable because they have a single unpaired electron orbiting their nucleus. 

This electron is looking for a partner. Therefore, this free radical very easily reacts with other molecules.

Because of this, free radicals can cause all kinds of damage. They can even damage your DNA.

Nitric oxide also happens to be a free radical. Hence, it also reacts very easily with other molecules.

Free Radicals Can Eliminate Nitric Oxide

And when a free radical spots nitric oxide, they will normally react with each other. 

When this happens, your nitric oxide will transform into something other than nitric oxide. It will be eliminated. 

Now you have less nitric oxide.

By the way, two free radicals that very easily react with nitric oxide are superoxide, and oxidized low-density lipoprotein.

This is where Pine bark’s antioxidant powers enter the picture. 

As a powerful antioxidant, pine bark seeks out and destroys free radicals.

Pine bark has antioxidant powers

As a result, pine bark is able to reduce the number of free radicals such as superoxide and oxidized low-density lipoprotein, in your bloodstream. 

This in turn means that there will be fewer free radicals left to eliminate your nitric oxide. 

And in the end, your nitric oxide level is better preserved.

Pine Bark Has Anti-Inflammatory Properties

First off, what is inflammation?

Inflammation is your body’s natural response to protect itself against harm. Harm can be caused by infections, bacteria, injuries, toxins, etc.

Your immune system then releases antibodies, proteins and other ‘helpers’ to fix the damage.

Pine Bark Has Anti-Inflammatory Properties

This inflammation will often present itself as swelling, redness, soreness, etc.

Inflammation is not bad. It helps you deal with the problem.

What is bad, is chronic inflammation. This is inflammation that is permanent.

Research studies (see below) have demonstrated that Pine bark has the ability to reduce this kind of inflammation.

Chronic inflammation can cause erectile dysfunction mainly in two ways.

Firstly, if the inflammation is in your blood vessels, such as inflammation caused by atherosclerosis, this can reduce your blood vessels ability to produce nitric oxide. This inflammation can also restrict the amount of blood that can travel through your blood vessels.

Atherosclerosis Erectile Dysfunction

Secondly, inflammation can cause the composition of your blood to get out of balance. This can cause your bloodflow to thicken or otherwise slow down.

Reduced bloodflow may cause erectile dysfunction.

Pine Bark Can Reduce Your Blood Glucose Level (Glycaemia)

Research studies (see below) have shown that pine bark has the potential to reduce the amount of excess glucose in your blood.

You need some glucose, as this is used as fuel by your cells. The problem starts when you have too much glucose floating around in your blood.

First of all, this will make your blood thicker. Which in turn will make it flow less smoothly through your blood vessels, particularly through your very thin blood vessels.

Pine Bark Can Reduce Your Blood Glucose Level (Glycaemia)

Secondly, this can contribute to plaque building inside your blood vessels (atherosclerosis), which in turn can also reduce your bloodflow.

Thirdly, when you have excess glucose in your blood, your body will often start to produce more of the free radical superoxide. This can in turn reduce your nitric oxide levels.

All of the above can cause or contribute to, erectile dysfunction.

Therefore, when pine bark helps reduce excess glucose from your blood, it is also likely to improve your odds of functioning well sexually.

Pine Bark Can Improve Your LDL / HDL Cholesterol Balance

Researchers (see below for reports) have also discovered that Pine bark can reduce your LDL cholesterol, and increase your HDL cholesterol.

Cholesterol Atherosclerosis Erectile Dysfunction

By the way, LDL cholesterol is the ‘bad’ cholesterol that can contribute to atherosclerosis.

And HDL cholesterol is the ‘good’ cholesterol that is one its way to your liver for destruction.

When Pine bark improves this cholesterol balance, it will normally also lead to improved bloodflow. Which in turn will normally make it easier for you to function well sexually.

Scientific Studies On Pine Bark’s Impact On Erectile Dysfunction

In this section, you will find all the relevant scientific evidence that exists about Pine bark and its impact on sexual functions. 

Or at least, all the relevant scientific evidence that I am aware of. 😊

Scientific Studies On Pine Bark’s Impact On Erectile Dysfunction

With this information at hand, you can better draw your own conclusions. 

You will find a summary of the key findings from these scientific studies. And you will find a link to the studies, should you want to read the actual studies yourself.

I have presented all relevant studies I am aware of, whether they indicated that the effect from Pine bark was positive or negative. 

By the way, many of the studies below are done using something called Pycnogenol. Pycnogenol is a standardized Pine bark extract that contains monomers (catechin, epicatechin, and taxifolin), condensed flavonoids (classed as procyanidins/proanthocyanidins), and phenolic acids (cinnamic acids and other glycosides).  

Let’s look at what the scientists say.

Scientists researching effects of pine bark

Pine Bark Study 1: December 2019

Natural polyphenols improve erectile function and lipid profile in patients suffering from erectile dysfunction.

The goal of this study was to assess the effect of Pycnogenol on erectile function and lipid profile in ED patients.

53 patients with ED were divided into two groups. One consisting of persons with diabetes mellitus, and the other consisting of men who did not have diabetes mellitus.

The patients received Pycnogenol or a placebo daily, for 3 months.

The outcome?

One month after the end of the intervention:

  • Erectile function increased 45% in the diabetes mellitus group 
  • Erectile function increased 22% in the non-diabetes mellitus group 
  • Total cholesterol decreased by 20% in the diabetes mellitus group
  • LDL cholesterol decreased by 21% in the diabetes mellitus group
  • Glycaemia decreased by 22% in the diabetes mellitus group
The effect of Pycnogenol on erectile function

Pine Bark Study 2: March 2019

Pycnogenol supplementation as an adjunct treatment for antidepressant-induced sexual dysfunction.

The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of taking pine bark extract in combination with an SSRI drug, on SSRI induced sexual dysfunction.

This study included 72 patients of both genders. One group took the SSRI drug Escitalopram, and one group took Escitalopram + 50 mg of Pycnogenol, daily for 4 months.

The outcome?

Pycnogenol co-treatment resulted in attenuation of sexual dysfunctions beginning at 1 month of treatment, and continuing for two consecutive months.

The researchers proposed that Pycnogenol-mediated sexual dysfunctions attenuation is based on its ability to improve endothelial functions by its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, vasodilatory, and anticoagulant action.

Research on pine bark and SSRI induced sexual dysfunction

Pine Bark Study 3: January 2012

Effects of Pycnogenol on endothelial function in patients with stable coronary artery disease: a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, cross-over study.

The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of Pine bark on endothelial function in patients with stable coronary artery disease.

This study involved 23 patients with coronary artery disease, who received 200 mg/day of Pycnogenol, or a placebo, for 8 weeks. 

The outcome?

After 8 weeks, the Pine bark group saw an improvement in flow-mediated dilatation of the brachial artery (the major blood vessel of the upper arm) of 32%. 

This group also saw a reduction in oxidative stress of 7%. 

The study concluded that Pycnogenol improves endothelial function in patients with coronary artery disease by reducing oxidative stress.

Pine bark can help coronary artery disease

Pine Bark Study 4: June 2011

Pharmaceutical and nutraceutical effects of Pinus pinaster bark extract.

The purpose of this study was to provide a brief overview of clinical studies describing the beneficial and health-promoting effects of pine bark extract.

The outcome?

By reviewing existing reputable studies, this study concluded that Pine bark extract:

  • Rich in polyphenolic compounds has been shown to cause endothelium-dependent vasorelaxation and decrease the amount of circulating inflammatory substances in the blood stream
  • Is useful in order to reduce the risk of heart disease, and is effective in the treatment of chronic venous insufficiency and retinal micro-hemorrhages venous disorders
  • Ameliorates excessive oxidative stress in several cell systems by doubling the intracellular synthesis of anti-oxidative enzymes, and by acting as a potent scavenger of free radicals
  • Plays an important role in the regeneration and protection of vitamin C and E
  • Has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties
  • Inhibits angiotension-converting enzyme which is associated with a mild antihypertensive effect
Health-promoting effects of pine bark extract

Pine Bark Study 5: January 2009

Antihypertensive effect of French maritime pine bark extract (Flavangenol): Possible involvement of endothelial nitric oxide-dependent vasorelaxation.

The aim of this study was to evaluate whether a dietary supplementation of Flavangenol exhibits antihypertensive action using deoxycorticosterone acetate-salt hypertensive rats.

A group of rats were initially treated with deoxycorticosterone acetate-salt, to induce hypertension.

For the following 5 weeks, the rats were treated with Flavangenol, or a placebo.

The outcome?

In rats were treated with Flavangenol:

  • Hypertension was significantly suppressed
  • Superoxide production was suppressed
  • Endothelium-dependent vasorelaxation was improved
  • Nitric oxide synthase protein expression was increased

The researchers concluded that it seems likely that the antihypertensive effect of Flavangenol is attributable to both its antioxidative property-related protective effects against endothelial dysfunction, and the endothelium-dependent vasorelaxant effect, which is mediated by endothelial nitric oxide synthase activation.


Pine Bark Study 6: September 2007

Pycnogenol, French maritime pine bark extract, augments endothelium-dependent vasodilation in humans.

The goal of this study was to determine Pycnogenol’s effects on endothelium-dependent vasodilation in humans.

This study included 16 healthy young men, who were given 180 mg/day of Pycnogenol, or a placebo, for 2 weeks.

The outcome?

After two weeks, the study found that forearm blood flow in the Pycnogenol group increased by 41%.

The researchers concluded that Pycnogenol augmented endothelium-dependent vasodilation by increasing nitric oxide production.

Science demonstrate that pine bark improve vasodilation by increasing nitric oxide production

Pine Bark Study 7: January 2004

Pycnogenol, French maritime pine bark extract, improves endothelial function of hypertensive patients.

The goal of this study was to assess the impact of Pycnogenol on endothelial function in hypertensive patients.

The study was done on 58 patients with hypertension. These patients received 100 mg of Pycnogenol daily, or a placebo, for 12 weeks.

The outcome?

Supplementation of Pycnogenol had the following effects:

  • Reduced the calcium antagonist nifedipine
  • Decreased endothelin-1 concentrations
  • Increased concentrations of 6-keto prostaglandin F1a in plasma

The study concluded that Pycnogenol was able to improve endothelial function in hypertensive patients.

Pycnogenol improves endothelial function in hypertensive patients

Pine Bark Study 8: September 2003

Lipid metabolism and erectile function improvement by pycnogenol, extract from the bark of pinus pinaster in patients suffering from erectile dysfunction-a pilot study.

The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of Pycnogenol on erectile dysfunction.

This research study included 21 men with erectile dysfunction, who were administered 120 mg/day of Pycnogenol, or a placebo, for 3 months.

The outcome?

After 3 months, the Pycnogenol group experienced:

  • Significantly improved ED score
  • A significant increase of plasma antioxidant activity 
  • A decrease in the level of total cholesterol from 5.41 to 4.98 mmol/L 
  • A decrease in LDL-cholesterol from 3.44 to 2.78 mmol/L
Studies on the effect of Pycnogenol on erectile dysfunction

Pine Bark Study 9: October 2002

Supplementation with a pine bark extract rich in polyphenols increases plasma antioxidant capacity and alters the plasma lipoprotein profile.

The aim of this study was to test the effect of Pycnogenol supplementation on measures of oxidative stress and the lipid profile in humans.

25 healthy persons received 150 mg/day Pycnogenol for 6 weeks.

Fasting blood was collected at baseline, after 3 and 6 weeks of supplementation, and again after a 4-week washout period.

The outcome?

There was a significant increase in oxygen radical absorbance capacity in plasma throughout the supplementation period. This returned to baseline after the 4-wk washout period.

Pycnogenol also significantly reduced LDL-cholesterol levels and increased HDL-cholesterol levels in plasma of two-thirds of the subjects.

The LDL changes reversed during washout, the HDL increase did not.

Pine bark extract can improve oxidative stress

Other Health Benefits From Pine Bark

Although Pine bark is often used to improve erectile dysfunction, it has also been shown to have several other health benefits.

Pine bark has been used for preventing disorders of the heart and blood vessels, including stroke, heart disease and high blood pressure. 

It has been shown to improve blood sugar in persons with type 2 diabetes as well as to lower LDL cholesterol (the bad cholesterol) and increasing HDL cholesterol (the good cholesterol). It has also been shown to have anti-inflammatory effects and to treat the symptoms of knee osteoarthritis.

Pine bark extract may also reduce stuffy nose in response to allergies, have fat-burning and anti-obesity effects, and improve attention and memory functions. 

In addition, Pine bark has been reported to improve physical fitness and reduce oxidative stress and muscular pain. 

It is also reported to be antimicrobial and improve asthma conditions.

Let me tell you about my experience with Pine bark.

Health Benefits From Pine Bark

My Experience With Pine Bark Supplements

  • Form: Loose powder
  • Dose: One tablespoon (not fully topped) (approximately 7 grams)
  • When: 60-120 minutes before sexual activity
  • Effect on libido: None
  • Effect on erection: Very good
  • Effect on sensation: None
  • Taste: Horrific
  • Verdict: A very good supplement 👍
  • Noticed side-effects: None

The first time I tried Pine bark, I decided to do what I had done with most of the other supplements: Mix a tablespoon (not fully topped) in water and drink the mixture.

A tablespoon of pine bark powder

So that’s what I did.

My first observation: 

The taste was horrible! Almost unbearable! 

To me the taste of Pine bark is extremely bitter! Awful! 

The next few times I took it, I needed to take a teaspoon of honey immediately after to flush away the bad taste. 🙂

When I take Pine bark today, I put the powder in capsules. When I swallow the capsules, there is no taste. Hence, taste issue solved. 👍

If you want to purchase a capsule making set and capsules, you find them here.

Pine bark powder in capsules

So what effects does Pine bark have on me?

Firstly, it does not increase my libido. Nor does it impact the sensations I feel from having sex. This is probably because Pine bark does not impact testosterone or dopamine production.

However, Pine bark does have a profound effect on my erections. When I take this supplement, I normally get erections easier. I also normally get stronger and fuller erections, and my erections last for longer.

When I take supplements to boost my sexual abilities, I normally always take Pine bark. 

But I don’t take it alone. I take it in combination with 3 other supplements.

Pine bark forms the base of supplements I always take.

Pine bark and other supplements

So when I take supplements to improve sexual functions today, I normally always take a base consisting of L-citrulline (7 grams), Pine bark (7 grams) and ZMA (0.5 grams). 

On top of this I also take 7 grams of one herbal supplement, such as Tongkat Ali, Tribulus Terrestris, Fenugreek, Horny Goat Weed or Maca.

Why do I combine the supplements?

Simply because the effects I get are stronger and more consistent. Normally when I take these combinations, the results are amazing.

I have found that combining these supplements normally produces erections that are on par with those I got in the past, when I took pharmaceutical drugs.

Meaning that these combinations, for me, are as effective for erections as medications. 🙂

Combining supplements produces full erections

But without any of the awful side-effects, such as a flushed face, headache, runny nose, blurred vision, etc. 🙂

Also, sex is even more enjoyable when I take these supplements. The pleasurable sensations I feel from sex are enhanced. They are even more intense. And the orgasms are also amplified.

Lastly, these combinations also normally increase my libido, making me desire sex more and helps put me in a sexual mood.

By the way, if you want to learn how to cure ED naturally and permanently, you can read this guide.

Safety Of Pine Bark Supplements

Is it safe to take Pine bark in the doses that I have taken? Which is about 7 grams.

I wish I could give you a clear answer, but I can’t. The answer is that I don’t know. 

Safety of pine bark supplements

I am not a doctor and I don’t know for sure whether this is indeed safe.

However, in some the research studies above, the participants noticed no material side effect from taking large doses of the supplements.

Personally, I have never experienced any side effects from taking Pine bark in these doses. 

I have taken these supplements on multiple occasions over several years, and not a single time have I experienced negative side effects.

However, that does not mean that it is 100% safe. There is also a chance that your body may react differently than my body.

Therefore, should you try Pine bark in the same doses I have used, you do this 100% at your own risk.

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